Six hundred athletes have arrived in Turin, Italy for edition number 30 of the European Indoor Championships. Bob Ramsak is in Torino, and here is his first update….
(Picture of one of adidas’s very first spikes, courtesy of adidas communications.)
TAMGHO FAILS TO ADVANCE, BOGDANOVA CRUISING IN PENTATHLON AS EUROPEAN INDOOR CHAMPIONSHIPS BEGIN IN TURIN
By Bob Ramsak
(c) 2009 TRACK PROFILE Report, all rights reserved
Turin, Italy â€“ Frenchman Teddy Tamgho, a strong favorite for the European indoor triple jump title, failed to advance from todayâ€™s opening round as the 30th edition of the continental indoor championships kicked off this morning at the Oval Lingotto in Turin.
â€œI am so disappointed,â€ said Tamgho, who struggled with his approach in each of his three qualifying attempts. The 19-year-old jumped 17.58m in Paris last month, but here he managed only one fair jump of just 15.94m and fouled twice.
â€œI was the big revelation of the winter season, but now I got a big slap on my face.â€
Jaanus UudmÃ¤e of Estonia was the leading qualifier for tomorrowâ€™s final, leaping a career best of 17.06.
After a strong performance in the opening three events, Anna Bogdanova of Russia is on course to succeed Carolina Kluft as the continentâ€™s pentathlon champion. The 24-year-old, who took the world indoor bronze in the event, produced two personal bests and equaled a third to piece together 2990 point tally, 100 points ahead of Dutchwoman Jolanda Keizer (2890). Viktoriya Zemaityte of Lithuania is currently in third with 283 points. The competition ends later today with the high jump and 800m.
The final qualifying round of the morning brought the most impressive results, with the top five qualifiers in the Long Jump reaching personal bests to reach tomorrowâ€™s final.
Ksenija Baltaâ€™s 6.75m third round leap was an Estonian national record and the second farthest leap of the winter. Balta, a heptathlete with 6100+ point credentials, added five centimeters to the record she set 13 days ago in Tallinn.
â€œI didnâ€™t expect to jump a national record in qualifying,â€ said Balta, who is also the national record holder outdoors at 6.80m.â€
Sloveniaâ€™s Nina Kolaric also had a strong morning, overcoming early season difficulties with her approach to improve her career best twice, first to 6.51m and then again to 6.67m, a national record for the 22-year-old. Kelly Proper, fifth among qualifiers with 6.59m, improved the Irish national record.
Yelena Sokoleva (6.71m PB) led a Russian trio into the final, with world leader Olga Kucherenko (6.58m) and Tatyana Voykina (6.51m) also advancing. Balta meanwhile will be joined in the final by teammate Sirkka-Liisa Kivine, who reached a PB 6.66m.
All the medal favorites advanced in the menâ€™s 3000m, with Bouabdellah Tahri producing the quickest time of 7:52.58. Behind him Spaniard Sergio Sanchez (7:52.75) and Selim Bayrak of Turkey (7:52.93) also dipping under 7:53.
Belgian record holder Eline Berings led all qualifiers in the opening round of the 60m Hurdles. The 22-year-old, who clocked 7.97 at the Belgian Championships 12 days ago, was nearly as quick with her 8.00 victory in the fourth of four heats.
The men’s 60m hurdles opening round produced no surprises, with European leader Yevgeniy Borisov (7.63) of Russia and defending champion Gregory Sedoc (7.68) of The Netherlands advancing easily.
In the 400m, newcomer and world leader Antonina Krivoshapka of Russia carried her favoriteâ€™s role well, cruising to a 51.56 clocking in the third of four heats, more than a second faster than the rest of the qualifiers. All the favorites advanced from the menâ€™s race with Swede Johan Wissman the fastest in 46.49. Irishman David Gillick, who is seeking an unprecedented third straight title over the distance, easily advanced to this afternoonâ€™s semi-finals.
Germanyâ€™s Denise Hinrichs, the European junior champion in 2005, quickly dispensed with the qualifying formalities in the Shot Put after her opening round heave reached 19.25m to equal her persona best. Her compatriot Petra Lammert was the next to qualify, with an 18.67 toss, while defending champion Assunta Legnante (18.09m) advanced as well. All but one of the qualifiers to this afternoonâ€™s final threw beyond 18 meters.
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