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Yarislay Silva, photo by

Silva 491 AR, WL
BECKUM (GER, Aug 2): Cuban Olympic medalist Yarisley Silva is in top shape as she won the 17th pole vault meet in Beckum before 3000 spectators with 491 clearance in third attempt. That is new Continental record and World lead, also meet record. She did not jump more. She started at 450 in second attempt, then 460 and 470 in first, after first not succesful attempt at 475 she mastered 483 in second and new record in third attempt. "I knew based on my training that I could jump such a height. But still, Im little bit surprised I did it already here. Thanks to excellent public for the support," said Silva. Second Lisa Ryzih 465, she did not continue after breaking her pole. Third Katharina Bauer personal best 465. Fourth French Marion Lotout 450 and fifth Martina Strutz 444. 

Editor's note: Yarislay Silva is the vaulter to watch out for in Beijing. If she continues to perform, she will be the one to watch. My guess, watch her and Jenn Suhr. The vault for women is becoming truly exciting. Congrats to Yarislay who impressed in Manchester on the City Games vault in May 2015 and recently at Stockholm last Thursday night. 

Seb Coe and Sergey Bubka, photo by

Bubka says has plenty of support
KUALA LUMPUR (MAS): Insidethegams informs that Sergey Bubka vowed not to withdraw his bid to become President of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) after two more countries publicly promised to back his rival, Sebastian Coe. Spain and The Netherlands both announced that they would be voting for the double Olympic 1500 metres gold medallist, meaning 14 European countries in two days have come out in support for the Briton. "Many thanks to those backing me for the IAAF Presidency. I'm very grateful for the support," Coe tweeted.  "I am not worried," Bubka, who is attending the 128th International Olympic Committee Session here, told insidethegames. "I too have plenty of support from members of the IAAF family. I have no intention of withdrawing."

Editor's note: With less than three weeks to go, the election for IAAF President is closer than some might suspect. Seb Coe just gained support of 14 European countries in the past two days. Sergey Bubka notes in story above that he is not withdrawing. 

Much is on the line in our sport with the upcoming vote. This vote does matter. We hope that Federations, all 209, will consider what is good for the sport. 
Stockholm is sacred ground for athletics. Not only do we have the 1912 Olympic stadium, we have the original home of the IAAF. 

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The Bauhaus Gala as TV is calling it is a reemergence of the meet, which has had a couple challenging years. With a new sponsors, Bauhaus (think hardware stores), and the support of the city of Stockholm, the meet is on solid financial footing. As Daniel Wessfeldt, the Swedish agent and manager of some reknown, continues to develop the meet, look for Stockholm DL to blossom once again. 

The meet had been on solid footing for three decades until internal politics forced the well respected meet director out in 2012. The meet is coming back.

2015 is a strange year, as the weather and Beijing World Champs put Stockholm at a strange time; just before the champs, unlike in 2012, being right after. 

Here are the previews of events from our friend, Alfons Juck. 
Asafa Powell, photo by

The American Track League will hold its third meeting in Atlanta, GA on August 1, 2015. The tickets are extraordinarily inexpensive and the fields are tremendous. If you want to see some of the world's very best before they head to Beijing, including Asafa Powell, Veronica Campbell Brown and Jason Richardson, the don't walk, but run to the website at

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Christina Schwanitz, last throw, July 29, 2015, photo by Larry Eder

The rain was on and off, mostly on, during the fine shot put competition held in the center of the city. With a fine set up, about 250 fans and members of the media showed up, and a nicely run Swedish men's and Diamond League shot put was held. 

The perfect song for the day is by Steve Earle, the American country western singer (aka the Keith Richards of country western music), and an amazing song, "And the rain came down." 
Bauhaus Stockholm DL, photo courtesy of IAAF/Getty Images

The Stockholm Diamond League is a meet rich in tradition and history. The home of the 1912 Olympics, and the birthplace of the IAAF, Stockholm is one of my favorite cities on the tour. 

Sweden is athletics crazy. Swedish track stars are stars for life, and the community and culture treasures them. The DN Galen (former name of meeting) was a weeklong celebration of athletics. 

Now, as Bauhaus Stockholm (think Menards, or a fine hardware store), and with the City of Stockholm's blessing, the meet is on the way back. 

It broke my heart when the meet began to descend from totally sold out and supported, to good intentions but a less than complete appreciation of the culture of athletics. In 2012, when Rajne Söderberg left the meeting, Stockholm DL was left rudderless. The athletes were concerned and so was the athletic community. 

It happen all over. A meet director is a special sort. Businessman, cheerleader, athletic enthusiast, great relationships, Rajne Söderberg could paste support from around the community. Mark Wetmore does it in New York and Boston, and Tom Jordan does it in Eugene. Yet, for some reason, outsiders sometimes believe that anyone can do it. If anyone can not do brain surgery, and surely meet directors are a complicated lot, then anyone can not do meet directing successfully. 

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The Stockholm meet began to crumble. Stalwarts stayed but the crowds dropped several thousand each year. That had not happened in 30 years! 

I am happy to report that the meet is back in good hands. While Rajne has decided to retire from athletics management, Daniel Wessfeldt, the acclaimed manager is working on the meet. When I asked Daniel what message that the meet wants to get out, he said: "With the new sponsor, Stockholm has financial stability, and with the support of the City of Stockholm, were are coming back to past levels." 

We hope that fans show up. There will be a fine meeting in 2015, and next year, a better date. There is a shot put on Wednesday evening, 5 pm local time with 6 pm Women's Diamond League in the city center. 

The meeting starts on Thursday, July 30 at 4 pm with the Triple Jump and the Diamond League events begin around 7.20 P.M.

All track fans, true track fans need to visit Stockholm. Soak in the history. Walk on the hallowed wooden track where Paavo Nurmi warmed up (still there, under the stands). 

When Chris Turner, IAAF communications manager and good friend, gave me my first tour in 2011, I was a geek in awe. And to watch a meeting here is a life treat. 

The London Olympic Stadium, repurposed, July 2015, photo by

When Beren Cross and I chatted on Saturday, we were discussing stories for that day and the next. While my editorial standards are sacrosanct (otherwise, the late James Dunaway visits me in my dreams), I do give my writers much freedom. 

Beren Cross was to write two pieces, on on Dina Asher-Smith and one on the Legacy of the London Olympic stadium. 

Here is the second. 

I think that he did a fine job. 
Dina Asher-Smith, photo by

Beren Cross wrote this piece on Dina Asher-Smith, and her fine British record for the 100 meters on Saturday. 

You have seen one of the stars of the 2024 Olympics: Dina Asher-Smith and Candice Hill. 

Enjoy the ride.
Shawn Barber, 5.93m Canadian record, photo by

Renaud Lavillenie, 6.03m MR, photo by

The second day of the Sainsbury's Anniversary Games was a fantastic day of track and field, and a great showcase of the London Olympic stadium and the living legacy of London 2012. In two minutes, Dina Asher-Smith ran 10.99 and Shara Proctor leaped 6.98m, both British records. Shara Proctor broke her NR on her last jump of the day! 

Dina Asher-Smith, 100m NR, 10.99, photo by

Shara Proctor, 6.98m NR, photo by

Shawn Barber, in same week he won the Pan Am Games pole vault, came over to London and set a new Canadian record, his seventh, with his fine 5.93m! 

And Dafne Schippers, who set Netherlands record in final of 100 meters in 10.92, ran a screamingly fast leg in the NED 4x100 meters on Friday night. She is ready for Beijing! 

Dina Asher-Smith, photo by

There was magic, and there was excitement. Renaud Lavillenie clearing 6.03 meters. Shawn Barber clearing 5.92m, a new Canadian record. 

Then, in two minutes time, Dina Asher-Smith, runs 10.99 for a new British record. Shara Proctor, leaps 6.98m in the long jump.

And the meet for day two was on! 

From the Emsley Carr Mile, with Asbel Kiprop and Matthew Centrowitz showing two of the most promising medal contenders at 1,500 meters for Beijing, to Dafne Schippers running 10.92, I was transfixed.

Enjoy the results and watch for our pieces later tonight and tomorrow, after I get in a couple of walks! 

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