Munich: Armand ‘Mondo’ Duplantis and Kirsten Warholm brought stardust to Day 4 of the European Athletics Championships in Munich on Thursday. Olympic pole vault champion Duplantis just broke his own world record in Eugene, winning world gold in 6.21m last month and easily qualified for Saturday’s final.
He rattled the bar down on his first attempt at 5.65m, but the US-born Swede made a mistake on his second effort to secure his place in the bid to retain the continental title. did not commit His 6.05m championship record, set by Soviet and Ukrainian great Sergei Bubka, looks dangerous if Duplantis puts his mind to it and the weather remains favorable. Likewise, there was no drama in his second defending champions Warholm, who started at a breakneck pace in his 400 m hurdles semi-final at the Olympic Stadium.
He streaked to the front of the field and stuttered slightly entering the final hurdle, but the Norwegian clocked a winning 48.34 seconds and raised his fists as he crossed the line. When he broke the 29-year-old world record to win the 400m hurdles in a time of 45.94 seconds at last year’s Tokyo Olympics, he ran one of the greatest Olympic track performances of all time. However, the 26-year-old suffered a hamstring injury in June, and although he made it to the world finals in Oregon, he could only finish seventh.
Warholm’s gold-medal rivals in Friday’s final, scheduled for 2000 GMT, are Wilfried Happio of France, runner-up in 48.89 seconds, and 2016 European champions Warholm’s rivals in Berlin in 2018. Cuban-born Turk Yasmani Copelo, behind who became the silver medalist. “I’m happy to be in the European finals again,” Copello said.
Boll gets back on track
Dutch runner Femke Boll, who just won European gold in the 400m flats on Wednesday, is back on track in hot and sunny conditions for his favorite 400m hurdles. The hurdles world silver medalist and Olympic bronze medalist dominated the semifinals by 53.73 seconds to qualify for Friday’s final, scheduled for 1945 GMT, and maintain her bid for a daring double.
Great Britain’s Jake Wightman beat Norwegian star Jakob Ingebrigtsen to a surprise 1500m win at the World Championships, setting the fastest qualifying time of 1:45.94 in the 800m heat. The semi-finals of the two-lap race are scheduled for Friday, with the final scheduled for Sunday at 17:40 GMT. “This early morning race was a little nerve-wracking,” said Wightman. “I didn’t know what I needed to do to get to the next round, so I wanted to run faster and win the heat.
Reigning champion Nafi Thiam of Belgium took pole position with the remaining 800m of the heptathlon. The two-time Olympic and world champion Belgian clocked 13.34 seconds in the 100m hurdles, 1.98m in the high jump, 14.95m in the shot put and 24.64 seconds in the 200m on Wednesday’s first day of action. After a disappointing result, he rebounded with a 48.89m javelin throw for a total of 5,776 points. Poland’s Annik Sulek is second with his 5,604 points. – AFP