Four Games records
GUANGZHOU (CHN, Nov 23): Four Games records were registered during third day of athletics at Asian Games. Improving from 6th place four years ago Saudi Arabian Mohamed Othman Shahween won the 1500 m in new event best 3:36.49. Second Sadjad Moradi achieved new national record for Iran 3:37.09 and third olympic finalist Bilal Mansour Ali of Bahrain 3:38.39. Games record also for succesfull steeple title defender Tareq Mubarak Taher from Bahrain 8:25.89. Qatari Kamal Ali Thamer was second (8:26.27) and bronze for Saudi Arabian Ali Ahmed Al-Amri in 8:30.96. World junior champion Mutaz Essa Barshim of Qatar won the high jump with 227 clearance. Silver for Japan´s Hiromi Takahashi 223. Best women result was achieved in discus when Chinese olympic finalist Li Yanfeng achieved new event best and fourth best mark of 2010 66.18. Title defender Song Aimin was second (64.04) and Commonwealth gold medalist Krishna Poonia from India third (61.94). Fourth Games record of the day in women´s 20 km walk by World bronze medalist and title defender Liu Hong in 1:30:06. Silver for Japanese record holder Masumi Fuchise 1:30:34 and bronze for second Chinese representative Li Yanfei (1:32:34). Another Doha 2006 gold medalist winning also in Guangzhou was reigning world champion Maryam Jamal from Bahrain at 1500 m in 4:08.22. Surprise for silver, Vietnam´s Truong Thanh Hang achieved new national record 4:09.58. Bronze for Bahraini Mimi Belete 4:10.42 ahead of best home runner Su Qian (4:11.76). Big programme for Uzbekistan´s Yulia Tarasova. She was third in long jump (648) and won the heptathlon with 5783 score. Surprise Korean win in long jump for national record holder Jung Soon-Ok with 653 (smallest margin in this event in the history of the games) ahead of favorite Olga Rypakova from Kazakhstan (650). In relay heats Chinese men were fastest in 4x100 m with 39.03 (sensation - Japan out), Saudi Arabian men in 4x400 m (3:06.25) and Thailand´s women in 4x100 m (44.42).
College team a surprise winner
CHIBA (JPN, Nov 23): In a surprise result the annual Chiba Ekiden Relay (mixed teams) in central-eastern Japan was surprisingly taken out by a team of Japanese university all-stars in 2:07.52, the local outfit followed across the line by distance running powerhouse Kenya in 2:08.06 and 2009 winner Japan in 2:08.12. Fourth place for Russia (2:09:35) ahead of USA (2:10:54). From European teams Italy 8th (2:14:55), Romania 9th (2:15:02), Czech Republic 11th (2:15:23) and Norway 12th (2:17:01). Yuichiro Ueno led after first 5 km stage for Japan seniors after 13:23 and 6 seconds ahead of Kenyan Vincent Yator (13:29, here Craig Mottram 5th fastest 13:49). Japan continued to lead after women 5 km at second leg when Yuriko Kobayashi achieved 15:27. But then Kenyan Titus Mbishei posted 28:57 at 10 km and his team was in lead. Back to lead in fourth stage as Kasumi Nishihara achieved in women 5 km for Japan College 16:02 (and Kenyan only 16:54). Tsuyoshi Ugachi for Japan was the best in fifth leg at 10 km (28:51) and was in lead together with Japan college going into last stage. There Hanae Tanaka clocked 23:37 at 7.195 km (third fastest) and enough to hold the lead ahead of fast closing Kenya and Russia.
Martina is new European top sprinter
AMSTERDAM (NED): Europe has new top sprinter. Olympic and world finalist at 100 m and 200 m Churandy Martina will have to compete for the Netherlands as the IAAF no longer acknowledges the Netherlands Antilles as a country. The only exception stays Aruba, but all other Antilles Islands will have to send their athletes to the Netherlands. Martina has always freely chosen to compete for Curaçao even though he could have run for The Netherlands reports The Volkskrant. Martina has excellent best times 9.93 at 100 m and 20.08 in the 200 m which will qualify him as medal favorite at any European event indoor or outdoor. But he is not decided yet whether to compete for example at European Indoor Championships in Paris. "It 's has been for all of us a surprise and I need some time to think about this all. Sprinting is my passion and my job, I will continue doing this," he said for EME NEWS.
Spotakova and Thorkildsen first stars
PRAGUE (CZE): The launch of jubilee 50th Ostrava Golden Spike Meeting (IAAF World Challenge) started with the announcement that both current best javelin throwers will compete there on May 31 next year. Not only local hero and olympic winner and world record holder Barbora Spotakova but also the men´s number one and double olympic winner, world champion Andreas Thorkildsen of Norway. For Spotakova this will be already 6th Ostrava participation, but she won only once (2007) and wants to attack again the top place. "After beeing second in 2010 in rain what was one of my worst conditions to compete in my career I immediately decided I must return for the jubilee and finally show something spectacular," said Spotakova who is now coached by meet director and best male javelin thrower of the history Jan Zelezny. The multiple olympic and world winner was delighted that Andreas Thorkildsen will return to Ostrava after his only appearance here back in 2002 (fifth with 81.15): "I m really looking forward to have Andreas in Ostrava. He is now the best European athlete in all throws and have him is always very special. He is able to throw far already at the beginning of the season." The Norwegian is also expecting great competition at Golden Spike. "Already in 2002 the crowd was amazing, I saw the meet on TV in recent years and it looked great. My goal for 2011 is not only try to win in Daegu and the Diamond League but also to improve my personal best and throw over 90 meters as many times as possible," said Thorkildsen. In Ostrava he will face three strong opponents, all coached by Jan Zelezny. Both Barcelona finalists Petr Frydrych (88.23) and Vitezslav Vesely (86.45) with the best 20-years old thrower in the world Jakub Vadlejch (84.47). More on that at www.zlatatretra.cz.
Howard skipping the indoor season
ATLANTA (USA): US high jump record holder Chaunte Howard will pass the indoor season 2011 in order to be ready for summer and mainly World Championships in Daegu. The 205 jumper from last season´s US Championships in Des Moines ended the summer earlier than expected because of an injury. She won also bronze in Doha at World Indoor Championships. After Blanka Vlasic this is the second world class female high jumper missing the next undercover season.
TALLINN (EST): Discus thrower Gerd Kanter and long jumper Ksenija Balta are the Estonian athletes of the year 2010. Coach of the year for male athletes is Vesteinn Hafsteinsson who leads the career of Kanter. Best coach of female athletes is Andrei Nazarov who leads Balta´s career. European indoor heptathlon champion Mikk Pahapill and high jumper Anna Iljuštšenko finished close second in the men's and women's category respectively. Writes EA.
PORTLAND (USA): One of top US distance runners Kara Goucher will return from maternity leave in January and compete in the half marathon of the Arizona Marthon & ½ marathon on January 16th. Goucher gave birth to son Colt on September 25th and returned to training in October. Goucher's half marathon best stands at 1:06.57 which she ran on the downhill course of the 2007 Great North Half Marathon in England writes azcetral.com.
LONDON (GBR): Hugh Robertson, the Minister for Sport and Olympics, has suggested that Sergey Bubka is indulging in political showboating. Bubka urged the London Organizing Committee to honour its promise of delivering an athletics legacy from the 2012 Games by keeping the athletics track inside the Olympic stadium. Bubka is referring to Tottenham's bid to take of the Olympic Stadium without guarantees for the track. "We will deliver an athletics legacy from London 2012, and the scope and shape of that will be apparent once the bidding process is gone through" Robertson insisted on Insidethegames.biz. The writer of insidethegames Tom Degun who spoke to Bubka in Monte Carlo commented on this: "He looked me directly in the eyes during most of his words and I could see him visibly shaking. He may be a brilliant politician who makes you believe his every word but I assure you that he threw an unusual amount of force behind his comments on Saturday afternoon. For that reason, I must disagree with Hugh Robertson, who I know told insidethegames that Bubka is playing politics. I understand that the Sport and Olympics Minister may have seen his words as an attack on Coe in the battle for IAAF Presidency - as many I have spoken to have suggested. However, had Robertson been there in person, he may have felt differently as I and my colleagues did."
LONDON (GBR): Both the German and French Olympic Committees have concluded deals for their hospitality bases during the London 2012 Olympic Games reports Insidethegames. The Museum of London Docklands will host the DOSB (German Olympic Sports Confederation) while the Old Billingsgate will be home to the French Olympic Committee. Brazil earlier this year announced they would base at the Somerset House and will turn it into 'Casa Brazil'.
LUDWIGSHAFEN (GER): European long jump champion German Christian Reif is having no problem to defend his title in 2012 at European Championships in Helsinki and compete also at the Olympic Games in London. "Helsinki will be for me as a warm-up before London," he confirmed for Leichtathletik weekly issue.
INDIANAPOLIS (USA): Walker Trevor Barron has been named the 2010 Youth Athlete of the Year by USA Track & Field's Youth Committee. Barron will be honored on Saturday, December 4 at the Jesse Owens Awards and Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony, held at the Virginia Beach Convention Center. Five American junior records in one year have helped to make the 18 year-old the new face of race walking in the United States.
GUANGZHOU (CHN): Pat Butchers posts blogs from Asian Games at his www.globerunner.org.
KITA KYUSHU (JPN, Nov 23): Asahi Kasei won the men´s ekiden Kyushu Corporate at 78.8 km (7 stages) in final time of 3:53:33.