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Jake Wightman’s 800m “new lease of life”

World 1500m champion makes effective begin to his European marketing campaign on this arduous summer season

Jake Wightman has insisted that racing the 800m occasion on the European Championships has “given him a brand new lease of life”. After an arduous summer season wherein he famously received World 1500m gold and adopted that up with Commonwealth bronze, the 28-year-old has opted to run the two-lap occasion in Munich.

His marketing campaign started impressively, ending quickest for the semi-finals from a extremely aggressive qualifying stage as he got here by to win warmth one in 1:45.94 – the race from which the 4 quickest losers got here – and admitted afterwards that he’s operating with a higher sense of freedom.

“Doing the 800m is a brand new lease of life for me,” stated Wightman, 1500m European bronze medallist 4 years in the past. “I’m not as contemporary as I used to be in Eugene however I solely must run half the space for this so I’m having fun with it.

“There may be much less determination making [in the 800m], they’re a bit extra easy than a 1500m which tends to have much more variation. The strain is off for the 800m, so I really feel like I’ve obtained a a lot freer run at that distance.”

Wightman’s fellow Brits Ben Pattison (1:47.64) and Daniel Rowden (1:47.67) made it by to the semis because the six slowest qualifiers by place had been solely separated by 0.03 of a second. Shock eliminations included former world medallist Amel Tuka (1:47.73) and European indoor medallist Mateusz Borkowski (1:47.74).

One other British athlete with 800m on their agenda is Keely Hodgkinson. The World and Commonwealth silver medallist was solely 14th-fastest general however loved a really easy win in 2:03.72. Jemma Reekie additionally impressed with a  2:02.36 warmth win whereas Alex Bell was second in her race in 2:02.43.

Keely Hodgkinson (Getty)

As with the lads, the athletes ending in fourth to seventh in warmth one took all of the quickest losers spots in a race received by two-time European champion Nataliya Krol (previously Pryshchepa), quickest general in 2:00.88. The Ukrainian was banned for 20 months in 2020 after testing optimistic for a banned substance and her pre-2022 greatest was 2:03.56.

There was additionally British success within the girls’s 3000m steeplechase heats, Aimee Pratt qualifying comfortably from warmth one in 9:39.22, whereas nationwide record-holder Elizabeth Chook checked out ease in warmth two and jogged throughout the road in third with 9:40.05. Elise Thorner struggled with 10:08.46.

In the meantime, the large names had been out in pressure for the semi-finals of the lads’s and ladies’s 400m hurdles.
World record-holder Karsten Warholm didn’t have a faultless race with a number of stutters however was nonetheless quickest with a 48.38 win. Eire’s Thomas Barr (49.30) and Britain’s Jacob Paul (49.48) had been the quickest athletes to overlook out by time.

“Recent” from her 400m gold medal the earlier evening, Femke Bol was a category aside in her 53.73 win. Briton Jessie Knight was a fast-finishing fourth in her warmth in 55.39 in race received by Viivi Lehikoinen in a Finnish document 54.50 and entered the dreaded ‘scorching seat’ however was jettisoned by a sooner time in warmth three and ended up tenth greatest general.

Lina Nielsen was fifth in her warmth in 57.19 and Hayley McLean was fifth in hers in 56.20.

Jodie Williams certified quickest for the ladies’s 200m semis with a season’s greatest of twenty-two.92 (0.3), however Beth Dobbin’s marketing campaign ended prematurely after a false begin in warmth two.

Nafi Thiam (Getty)

Within the heptathlon, any probability Nafi Thiam had of breaking Jess Ennis’s championship document disappeared after a poor 6.08m lengthy bounce. A 48.89m javelin means the Olympic and world champion holds a 172-point lead on a rating of 5776 with Swiss Annik Kalin on 5604 and Pole Adrianna Sulek (5560), each of whom recorded lengthy bounce PBs with 6.73m and 6.55m respectively.

Noor Vidts (5497) was nonetheless in medal rivalry however world silver medallist Anouk Vetter was pressured to withdraw as a result of an Achilles downside. Jade O’Dowda was ninth on 5252 however Holly Mills solely jumped 5.72m and determined to retire earlier than the javelin.

Liveta Jasiunaite was one in every of two athletes to make the 61.00m computerized qualifying commonplace within the girls’s javelin, with 61.85m, whereas Barbora Spotakova threw 60.75m to qualify third greatest. The 41-year-old five-time world champion competed within the 2002 championships in Munich and that is the 2014 champion’s sixth Europeans.

Britain’s Bekah Walton threw 54.20m and was nineteenth greatest as 57.40m certified.

Within the males’s pole vault, 5.65m sufficed to get by to the ultimate. World record-holder Mondo Duplantis was solely sixth as a result of a first-time failure at his opening top as solely two athletes had excellent data. Many of the massive names obtained by unscathed and three Germans will guarantee large curiosity within the closing however double world medallist Piotr Lisek failed at 5.65m and, after two failures at his opening top of 5.30m, British champion Harry Coppell retired.

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