Jimmy Vicaut, photo by PhotoRun.net
Ronnie Baker winning Pre, photo by PhotoRun.net
The Golden Gala Pietro Mennea is being held on June 8 in the eternal city of Rome. The Golden Gala is one of my favorite meets on the Diamond League Tour. My first visit was in 2011, and it was alot of fun and history rolled into one visit. The performances, the Olympic Stadium, and the enthusiasm of the crowd was amazing.
EME News provided the preview below, please enjoy!
Can the duel Vicaut-Baker bring a 100 m World lead?
ROME (ITA): IAAF Diamond League 2017 arrived to Europe. Fourth stop at Stadio Olimpico of Rome. Golden Gala meet which started in the wake of Olympic boycott 1980 offers some superb clashes like Baker-Vicaut in the 100 m or Dibaba-Obiri in the 5000 m with Ibarguen-Rojas in triple jump, also Birech vs C. Kipruto in men steeple. Russian Mariya Lasitskene can with 204 improve the meet record which is 203. Deep fields in men javelin and women pole vault. Several national events will gave the chance to Italian athletes to compete.
Event by event short previews
100m (non-DL) – Line-up includes Jimmy Vicaut and Ronnie Baker who have clocked 9.97 and 9.98 respectively this season. Time to change the World lead.
200m – Seven athletes in the field have sub-20 lifetime bests. The line-up features Rio Olympic silver and bronze medallists Andre de Grasse and Christophe Lemaitre.
800m – World U20 champion Kipyegon Bett will be looking for back-to-back Diamond League wins after winning in Shanghai. A wide open line-up also includes USA’s Donavan Brazier, Poles Adam Kszczot and Marcin Lewandowski and former Olympic silver medallist Nijel Amos. 1500m specialist Elijah Manangoi also drops down a distance.
110m hurdles – Aries Merritt is returning to form with a 13.13 season’s best but faces opposition from Olympic silver medallist Orlando Ortega and world champion Sergey Shubenkov. Andy Pozzi is also in shape.
3000m steeplechase – Strong Kenyan cast assembled including reigning Olympic champion Conseslus Kipruto, world-leader Jairus Birech and world champion Ezekiel Kemboi who makes his season’s debut. World lead for sure.
Javelin – Line-up includes three medallists from the Rio Olympics (Rohler, Yego, Walcott) along with Olympic fourth-placer Johannes Vetter and in-form Czech Jakub Vadlejch. ThorkildsenÂ´s meet record 90.34 under threat.
100m – Dafne Schippers is the fastest in the line-up with an early season 10.95 season’s best.
400m – Little known Lydia Jele from Botswana has the fastest season’s best with 50.32 but the line-up also contains experienced Jamaicans Stephenie Ann McPherson and Novlene Williams-Mills and USA’s Natasha Hastings, who all boast sub-50 PBs.
1500m – After running fast times over 800m and 5000m, will Konstanze Klosterhalfen go sub-four on her season’s debut? Sifan Hassan also makes her 2017 debut at the distance after a Dutch 5000m record in Eugene.
5000m – The main programme concludes with an exciting clash between Genzebe Dibaba and Hellen Obiri who leads the world rankings with 14:22.47. Is the World record a possibility? The field also includes European champion Yasemin Can and Letesenbet Gidey who could challenge the world U20 5000m record of 14:30.88.
400m hurdles (non-DL) – Olympic silver medallist Sara Petersen and two-time world champion Zuzana Hejnova are both expected to feature. Also Jamaican Russell to be considere.
Triple jump – Olympic champion Caterina Ibarguen will face tough opposition from Yulimar Rojas who recently jumped 14.96m.
High jump – World champion Mariya Lasitskene leads the world rankings with 2.03m and is unbeaten this season. Deep field behind her.
Pole vault – Excellent line-up assembled including the three medallists from the Rio Olympics (Stefanidi, Morris, McCartney) and world champion Yarisley Silva. World lead (484) is a good possibility.
Shot put – Olympic champion Michelle Carter faces Shanghai winner Gong Lijiao and world-leader Anita Marton.