Andrey Mikhnevich in Top Shape: 22.09m ! by Alfons Juck, Note by Larry Eder

Andrey Mikhnevich, Europeans 2006, photo by

The key, for a top athlete, whatever the sport, is to be in shape and ready to compete when a Championship arrives. We are relearning this lesson as the European Championships get closer and closer ( July 26-August 1, 2010, Barcelona, Spain).

Andrey MIkhnevich, a former World Champion and European medalist, has been a key player in the Olympic shot battles as well. MIkhnevich hit 22.09m, equaling his countries NR from 1984 and giving him the leading throw for a European shot putter.

In the Self Made Olympian, published back in 1974, the late Ron Daws, who was a member of the 1968 U.S. Olympic team at the marathon, noted that,  In an Olympic final, in a field of twelve, three people are over-trained, three are slightly injured. That leaves six to consider, and in that group, Of that six, it comes down to the three who want it the most, and who can take that want or need and convert it to a victory.

Our sport is based in science, but at the end of the day, the athletes is also an artist. His or her creative expression is that performance, that sixth round throw that puts one in medal contention, that last fifty meters of a distance race, when the competition is worn down and it comes down to who wants it more. We shall see such heroics at the European Champs, as athletes challenge themselves to run, jump and throw farther than ever before!


MINSK (BLR, Jul 14): Former world champion Andrey Mikhnevich is in great shape before European Championships. At a meet devoted to past legends of Belarus athletics at the Dinamo Stadium in Staiki (part of Minsk) he achieved european lead and third best in the world 22.09. With that personal best he also equalled the national record of Sergey Kasnauskas from 1984. In his series the worst measured attempt was 21.68 (f-21.85-21.68-f-22.09-21.82). Natalya Koreyvo was impressive in the 1500 m 4:06.52. Volha Tsander achieved 71.66 in women hammer and Valeriy Svyatokha 77.26 in men competition. Solid also 81.86 in javelin by Vladimir Kozlov.

SARANSK (RUS, Jul 14): In high jump battle during windy third day of Russian National Championships Aleksandr Shustov won over big names with 232 and will travel to Barcelona. Second Aleksey Dmitrik 230 and only then followed World indoor champion Ivan Ukhov (228) and olympic gold medalist Andrey Silnov (228). World champ Yaroslav Rybakov is not interested in Barcelona, Shustov was pre-selected so remaining two positions will be decided between Dmitrik, Ukhov and Silnov. Other finals were also due to weather not too impressive, Sergey Makarov 78.65 in javelin and his former wife Oksana Gromova 55.68 (Abakumova did not compete, she is pre-selected). Yulia Golubchikova won the pole vault with 450 ahead of Valeriya Volik and Tatyana Polnova. Their marks only 425 and 405 due to wind. Svetlana Feofanova did not compete, she is pre-selected. In running events excellent european seasonal lead for Mariya Konovalova in the 5000 m 14:49.68. Men´s winner Aleksandr Orlov achieved 13:37.52. In the 1500 m heats Anna Alminova clocked the fastest 4:06.18 in first race in her return after 3 months ban, Oksana Zbrozhek got 4:08.83 in second. 800 m world leader Mariya Savinova also qualified from another heat in 4:10.25. 200 m semifinals were aided by too strong wind, Anastasiya Kapachinskaya (+2.7) and Aleksandra Fedoriva (+3.5) both clocked 22.50 in different races. Aleksandr Khyutte was the fastest in men´s semifinals in 20.73 (+4.0). In triple jump qualification Nadezhda Alekhina achieved 14.45 (+5.0).

NUORO (ITA, Jul 14): World indoor champion Australian Fabrice Lapierre impressed with new personal best at Italian international fixture. His 840 leap was supported by legal +0.5. It is second best mark of the year, Dwight Phillips has 842. It should be also noted that in Spring at Australian Championships Lapierre achieved 878 but aided by +3.1 wind. Another top mark in good summer weather was the return of relay olympic winner Nesta Carter after injury. The Jamaican posted solid 10.08 (+0.9) ahead of US Ryan Bailey (10.10), Wallace Spearmon (10.15) and home Simone Collio (10.22). Bailey also won the 200 m in 20.31 (+0.8). Blade Runner Oscar Pistorius of South Africa was third in the 400 m (46.60), won by Jeremy Davis of US (45.97). Ty Akins won the 110 m hurdles in 13.43 (+0.8). In women events Marshevet Myers continues in solid return from injury with 11.24 (+1.1) win, Anneisha McLaughlin of Jamaica was the best in the 200 m (23.01, +0.5) and Novlene Williams-Mills at 400 m (51.14).

NEWCASTLE (GBR): Haile Gebreselassie is finally confirmed to compete in the Great Bupa North Run, a half marathon race from Newcastle to South Shields. Gebreselassie had promised his commitment to the race in 2000 after winning the Olympic 10000m race, however injuries had prevented him to actually compete. Gebreselassie is really eager to keep on winning races and hopes to do so on September 19th, he also expressed he is not yet planning to retire soon. The 37-year-old Ethiopian still remains highly motivated although fetching silence at GNR press conference, when saying: „Really, I can say I am lucky to take part this year - before I stop competing. Now I'm preparing for this half marathon and then I'm going to New York for the marathon (November 7)." Looking to the future, he insisted: „I hope I can do something special in London in 2012 at the Olympics."

PRAHA (CZE): Due to a hamstring injury legendary Roman Sebrle will not be able to compete in Barcelona at his fourth European Championships. He won the decathlon at two previous editions in Goteborg and Munich and was 6th in Budapest 1998. „I wanted to compete, was ready to do some individual events at Czech nationals this weekend. Even coach Kupka was surprised that my shape was growing at very good level. But the injury stopped me, my body was against," explained Sebrle. But he is still far away from ending his career. „Next year I will be back," he added and is having European Indoor Championships in Paris in his plan. The world record holder will still travel to Barcelona because he is bidding for a place in European Athletics Athletes Commission. „I think that after so many years competing I have what to say and I would be interested to work in this field in future," said Sebrle.

PARIS (FRA): Teddy Tamgho sustained an injury on his first attempt at the French championships in Valence last week-end. The MRI showed a light hamstring injury but also a more serious lesion in the right calf. The French triple jump star has pulled out of the Paris Areva Diamond League this Friday and there are now questions surrounding his participation in Barcelona.


PARIS (FRA): French marathon record holder Christelle Daunay announced she won't defend her chances in Barcelona, due to anemia-related fatigue. The winner of the 2010 Paris marathon (2:24:22), Daunay was planning to compete in the 10,000m in Spain.

ROME (ITA): Italy will send a team of 70 athletes to the European championships in Barcelona. 40 men have been selected of which defending marathon champion Stefano Baldini, walker Alex Schwazer, who has confirmed to take part in both the 20Km and 50km, and returning long jump champion Andrew Howe. The women's team has 30 qualified athletes with Elisa Cusma Piccione (800m) and Antonietta Di Martino (high jump).

GUADALAJARA (ESP): World record holder Dayron Robles has pulled out of the Paris Diamond League meeting complaining of soreness in both his legs following his victory in Lausanne last week. Robles will not be seen in one of the most anticipated duels predicted for the meeting as he was going to take on world leader David Oliver. Robles hopes to be back in top shape for next week's Diamond league in Monaco.

PARIS (FRA): Allyson Felix wrote in her latest IAAF Diary entry she is very excited about competing in the 200m at the Paris Diamond League. She hasn't run a 200m at that track since 2003 when she was on the USA world championships team as a junior. Also in her diary she wrote about becoming a member of the US president's council on fitness, sports and nutrition.

STOCKHOLM (SWE): For the third consecutive year the DN Galan Diamond League in Stockholm will hold its shot put competition one day ahead of the regular competition. The event will be held downtown and accessible free of charge. Main competitors in the event are Diamond race leader Christian Cantwell , who will take on Olympic champion from Poland Tomasz Majewski, and in the women's competition world and Olympic champion Valerie Vili. She will face competition from world leader Nadezhda Ostapchuck.

JOHANNESBURG (RSA): After organizing an outstanding FIFA world cup, South Africa has decided to officially enter the 2020 Olympic bidding race. A city will be chosen from Cape Town, Durban or Johannesburg. IOC president welcomes South Africa's bid as no other Olympic or Paralympic Games have been organized on the African continent yet writes insidethegames.

BARCELONA (ESP): In an interview with the Barcelona 2010 organizing committee Andrew Howe said he is hopeful to jump 830 in Barcelona and defend his European title he won four years ago. Howe has been suffering from a string of injuries but came back last weekend with a 816 jump at the Italian national championships.

PARIS (FRA): Just a few days after his historic performance of 9.98, Christophe Lemaitre spoke about his achievements at the press conference. Lemaitre said his record-breaking run is still far from perfect and he feels he still has a long way to go. Lemaitre is very eager to compete against sprintstars Asafa Powell and Usain Bolt at the stade de France on Friday. He also expressed he could run 9.92. In Barcelona Lemaitre aims at winning a medal in both the 100m and 4x100m, he is still undecided wether to compete in the 200m.

ZURICH (SUI): New initiative around Weltklasse Diamond League meet in Zurich is that the traditional „Youth trains with World Class" will happen also outside of Zurich. For first time it will be held also in Chur on Tuesday, Aug 17 with guest stars Barbora Spotakova and David Oliver. Opening a second possibility gives the chance also to other interested children.


KITAMI (JPN, Jul 14): At Hokuren Distance Challenge meet 28:08.16 at 10 000 m for Takayuki Matsumiya.

BRNO (CZE, Jul 14): Czech hammer record holder Lenka Ledvinova finally qualified for Barcelona with 70.10 at a local meet in Brno.

CONEGLIANO (ITA, Jul 14): Italian shot put record holder Chiara Rosa achieved here her season best 19.00 and her overall 4th 19+ mark.

NOVO MESTO (SLO, Jul 13): Additionally to the report, Merlene Ottey was even faster at this meet in heats of 100 m with 11.67 (+0.9). That is now the fastest by 50+ female athlete ever. Just to compare the fastest male at 50+ age as per World Masters website is Bill Collins (USA) with 10.95 in 2002.


DUSHANBE (TJK, Jun 18): Only now it is known from Heinrich Hubbeling Asian Report that at Tajikistan´s national championships in June Dilshod Nazarov achieved his first-ever 80 m-throw for a new PB and now he is the 3rd Asian thrower over 80 m with 80.11. Only Koji Murofushi of Japan (84.86 m in 2003) and Andrey Abduvaliyev of Tajikistan (TJK-record with 83.46 m in 1990) had longer throws. Nazarov is only third this year in the world with 80+ after Slovak Charfreitag and Belarussian Krivitskiy.

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