Sergey Shubenkov, photo by PhotoRun.net
Caster Semenya, photo by PhotoRun.net
Noah Lyles, photo by PhotoRun.net
Here is the preview of the Monaco Herculis meeting which should one of the finest of the entire season. Monaco comes at a great time each season and the performances show it. This is my first year missing in five years and I am missing it already! Stuart Weir will be covering the meet for us.
Shubenkov, Semenya, Lyles all ready for top marks
MONACO (MON): The 31st edition of EBS Herculis Meeting plans for very fast middle distances, specially menÂ´s 1500 m and both steeple races. Shubenkov could be ready for European record in the hurdles and Semenya will go for another solo without pace help in the 800 m. Lyles who just celebrated 21 years can go for WL in the 200 m. Deepest quality in womenÂ´s pole vault and duel of the evening Naser vs Miller-Uibo in the 400 m.
Event by event
200m – Seven of the eight entrants have season’s bests under the 20 second-barrier, including world leader Noah Lyles (19.69) and world champion Ramil Guliyev (19.90).
800m (non-DL) – Kenya’s Jonathan Kitilit faces Nijel Amos, in-form Australians Peter Bol and Joseph Deng as well as world champion Pierre-Ambroise Bosse who will be looking to improve his season’s best of 1:45.19.
1000m (non-DL) – Line up includes recently crowned world U20 800m champion Solomon Lekuta and world U20 1500m champion George Manangoi.
1500m – World champion Elijah Manangoi returns to racing after a hiatus. He faces training partner Timothy Cheruiyot who is unbeaten on the Diamond League circuit this year. Ingebrigtsen brothers (Filip and Jakob) also there with in-shape Holusa to represent Europe. World lead in plan.
110m hurdles – Sergey Shubenkov is a huge favourite with a recent 12.92 PB. The next fastest on season’s bests is Olympic silver medallist Orlando Ortega with 13.17.
3000m steeplechase – Line-up includes the top three from the World Championships (Kipruto, El Bakkali, Jager) and world leader Benjamin Kigen from Kenya, the winner in Eugene and Rabat.
High jump – World champion Danil Lysenko is the favourite with Mutaz Essa Barshim out for the season.
Triple jump – Expect another head-to-head between Pedro Pablo Pichardo and Christian Taylor.
100m – Seven of the eight competitors have run under 11 seconds in 2018 including world leader Marie Jose Ta Lou (10.85) and teammate Murielle Ahoure who ran a wind-aided 10.91 in Sotteville earlier this week.
400m – Bahrain’s Salwa Eid Naser’s win streak will be put to the test by Olympic champion Shaunae Miller-Uibo who is unbeaten over 200m and 400m in 2018.
800m – Line-up includes all of the recent medallists from the World Championships and Olympic Games: Semenya, Niyonsaba, Wambui and Wilson. Semenya holds the meeting record with 1:55.27. No pacemaker scheduled.
3000m steeplechase – World champion and silver medallist Emma Coburn and Courtney Frerichs face all the best Kenyans Beatrice Chepkoech, Hyvin Kiyeng, Cellphine Chespol and Norah Jeruto. Meeting record of 9:11.28 should be challenged, also the WL 8:59.36.
100m hurdles (non-DL) – Queen Harrison is the fastest this year with 12.66 but Eline Berings improved to 12.72 in Liege on Wednesday.
Pole vault – Field of the meet? Five of the vaulters have surpassed 4.80m this year including world and Olympic champion Ekaterini Stefanidi (4.82m), world indoor champion Sandi Morris (4.88m) and Eliza McCartney who has upped the world lead and her area record to 4.94m.