Flash! Ivan Ukhov High Jumps 2.36m World lead, by Alfons Juck, EME News

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Ivan Ukhov woke a few folks up in Arnstadt today with his fine 2.36m!

Ukhov world lead 236, Friedrich 202

ARNSTADT (GER, Feb 7): Russian Ivan Ukhov confirmed his number one position in the world. He won the 33rd high jump meet in Arnstadt and cleared new world leading 236 cm. He bettered so his own world lead since January 21 in Trinec for fourth time. He jumped at that time 233, followed by 234 in Hustopece and 235 in Moscow. The Russian went through all heights with ease (220, 224, 227, 230, 232, 236 in first). He had three good tries at 240 and afterwards said: "I want to jump 240 as soon as possible." His next meet will be Russian Championships on February 13-15. Oregon based US High Jumper Jesse Williams also had a special day before packed hall with 1200 spectators. He mastered 232 in third and then improved his overall PB to 234 right in first attempt. After two close tries at 236 he attempted once at 238 and so put in a danger for some seconds Ukhov win. Next two jumpers cleared 230. Olympic bronze winner Russian Yaroslav Rybakov as third and best German Raul Spank as fourth. Ukrainian Viktor Shapoval and Briton Martyn Bernard as fifth and sixth went over 227. The result list was completed by two Czechs Jaroslav Baba (224) and farewell making Tomas Janku (215). German home favorite Ariane Friedrich won the women competition with 202. That is her seasonal best and she equalled so her indoor PB from last year. Only Blanka Vlasic who competes in Stuttgart today jumped in this season higher with 203. Friedrich had her usual "high" opening at 190 and achieved as the next 196 and also two metres in first. Specially her attempt at two metres was the best of the evening with lot of space. Friedrich then achieved 202 in second and had good tries at 204. Second place for Russian Viktoriya Klyugina (200, overall PB) and third French Melanie Skotnik who is of German origin (193). For fourth a tie between Russian Svetlana Shkolina and Ukrainian Viktoriya Styopian (both 190). The same height also sixth Czech Iva Strakova (190) and seventh German Meike Kroger (190). Last position for young Russian Aleksandra Shamsutdinova (185). There were only 8 jumpers in both competitions and they competed at one landing pit in the same time. One height for women, that one height for men etc.

Lammert returns with 18.83

BERLIN (GER, Feb 7): Shot Putter Petra Lammert after long injury (since May last year) with solid 18.83 effort at regional championships. It is world leading mark in the current season and makes the German one of the medal contenders for European Indoor Championships in Torino next month.

Skrobakova Czech hurdles record 8.03

PRAHA (CZE, Feb 7): Czech 100 m Hurdles record holder Lucie Skrobakova finally got also the indoor mark. At Grand Prix Olymp Meet in Prague Stromovka Hall her time was 8.03 at 60 m Hurdles, better by 0.01 than 8.04 of Jitka Tesarkova achieved back in 1988. Also new meet record. Slovak Miriam Bobkova got Torino standard in other race with 8.21. Another Slovak norm for European Indoor Championships in women long jump as Jana Veldakova leaped already in first attempt to 653 cm. Not enough luck for Slovak shot putter Milan Haborak who with 19.77 missed the standard only by 3 cm. But there was also one more Czech standard for Italy. Sprinter Libor Zilka won the 60 m and achieved the exactly needed 6.68 (also PB for him). After short break one of Europe leading hurdlers returned into action. Petr Svoboda clocked in two races first 7.65 and in second new PB 7.59 at 60 m Hurdles. Only Dutch Gregory Sedoc is faster this year in Europe so far. Svoboda´s girfriend Jirina Ptacnikova who is already qualified for Torino went clearly over 420 in pole vault and had very good tries at would be PB 440. Briton Richard Hill won the 800 m in good 1:48.51 and Danish record holder Morten Jensen the Long Jump (777 cm). Sweden´s Lena Berntsson defended her title from last year and won the 60 m. Her new meeting record 7.33 was just 0.07 shy of her PB 7.26 from last year World Indoor Champioships.

Heltne world lead in shot put

BUCURESTI (ROM, Feb 7): Romanian shot put olympian Anca Heltne improved her PB in Shot put to world leading 19.54 m at national Grand Prix meet. First time in her career she went over 19 metres. Viorica Tigau leaped to 660 in Long Jump and experienced Adelina Gavrila to 13.74 in triple jump. Mihaela Neacsu achieved 2:04.81 at 800 m.

Italy wins the match

TAMPERE (FIN, Feb 7): Fast Italian sprinters dominated the Finland-Italy match in Tampere, one of few national countries matches which remained in the international calendar. The guests from Italy won with 102:66. Emanuele Di Gregorio won the 60 m in 6.63 ahead of Roberto Donati (6.64). 20 years old Matteo Galvan used the 300 m oval of Pirkkahalli to excellent improvement and european lead of the season 46.49 at 400 m. Good wins for Italy also by High Jumper Nicola Ciotti (225) and hurdler Micol Cattaneo (8.19). For home athletes Juha Sonck scored a solid 60 m Hurdles win in 7.70 (PB) and Jani Rautanen with 10.42 at 100 m. He was also third in 60 m with Torino qualifier 6.70. From group of guest athletes Latvian Dmitrijs Jurkevics improved at 800 m to 1:48.35 and Britain´s Vicky Barr won the 400 m in 52.94.

Sotherton opening indoors

BIRMINGHAM (GBR, Feb 7): Today was the first indoor competition of the year for Kelly Sotherton after back strain. Competing at Midland championships she was satisfied with victories in the high jump with 183 and shot with 14.00 m.

Accident in Kenya

NAIROBI (KEN): An upcoming international athlete and his training partner were on Friday killed in a morning road accident in Nyamira town as they headed to Kisii for a provincial cross country competition. Informs Kenyan daily The Nation. Japan-based Jefferson Siekei has been in Kenya on holiday and was bidding to make the Kenyan team to next month's IAAF World Cross Country Championships that will be held in Amman, Jordan.Siekei was riding his motorcycle with training partner, Christopher Michira Nyabera "Santos", a Form Three student at the Nyamira Technical Secondary School, when they collided head-on with a truck. Athletics Kenya secretary general, David Okeyo, and public relations officer, Peter Angwenyi, described the athletes as among Kenya's most promising. Siekei's manager, Stephen Mayaka, a Japan national currently in Kenya on a scouting mission, said Siekei had just signed a year's contract extension with his club, Hitachi Cable Company, in the Ibaraki Prefecture (province) of Japan. Siekei won the 2007 Kisii round of the Athletics Kenya Cross Country Series and was 12th at last year's national cross country championships in Nairobi. Informs The Nation.

Special thanks to Alfons Juck, EME News.

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