US Champion Gay continues World Champs build-up as Bondarenko clears 2.41m and meeting records tumble at Lausanne’s Athletissima meet
The last time he raced, Tyson Gay did the double at the US Championships with world leads of 9.75 for 100m and 19.74 for 200m. The American went into Lausanne’s Athletissima meeting, the eighth stop of the IAAF Diamond League, as favourite for the 100m and he didn’t disappoint, crossing clear with 9.79 in a race where the top four clocked sub-10 times.
Although former world record-holder Asafa Powell was next over the line thanks to a season’s best 9.88 and American Michael Rodgers crossed in 9.96 for third, it was the performance of fourth-placed Kim Collins of St Kitts and Nevis that also received a lot of well-deserved attention on Thursday evening.
The 37-year-old former world champion recorded a national record with his 9.97 PB, improving on a previous best which was set back in 2002.
Bondarenko hits new heights
Bohdan Bondarenko soared to equal third on the high jump all-time list thanks to a national and meeting record 2.41m, the best clearance in the world since 1994.
Having cleared the height on his final attempt the bar raised to 2.46m for what would have been a world record to which the Ukrainian, who was only 12th at the European Championships and seventh in the Olympics as recently as last year, came close on his first attempt.
A personal best 2.37m for American Erik Kynard was enough for second while Britain’s Olympic bronze medallist Robbie Grabarz, back in action following his season’s best 2.31m for third in Birmingham, failed at 2.27m and finished eighth.
Meeting records tumble
Sandra Perkovic went into the meeting just one win away from claiming overall victory in the discus Diamond Race and she secured it in style. The discus competition kicked off proceedings at the Stade Olympique de la Pontaise and saw the Croatian Olympic champion respond to a 67.36m second-round throw from Cuba’s Yarelis Barrios with a world-leading meeting record of 68.96m, a distance that’s also enough to better her own overall Diamond League-record throw of 68.77m from Stockholm last year.
Ethiopian-born Swede Abeba Aregawi was another athlete who was just one victory away from taking the overall Diamond Race win and her 1500m dominance continued as she comfortably crossed in 4:02.11 ahead of Ethiopian Sifan Hassan who achieved a personal best 4:03.73.
World indoor shot champion Ryan Whiting claimed the second meeting record of the day – his 21.88m ahead of his compatriot Reese Hoffa’s 21.58m to make up for the disappointment of finishing runner up at the recent meet in Birmingham.
The first meeting record on the track came in the women’s 3000m steeplechase. In the absence of Kenyan Milcah Chemos who dominated in Birmingham, Ethiopian Hiwot Ayalew claimed the win, finishing just ahead of her compatriot Sofia Assefa with 9:17.66 to Assefa’s 9:17.69.
Aman continues to dominate with season’s best
Ethiopian Mohammed Aman built on his 1:45.18 clocking for victory in Birmingham with a season’s best 1:43.33 for another win in Lausanne, overtaking Frenchman Pierre-Ambroise Bosse (1:44.11) on the bend to surge into the lead and cross comfortably.
Ethiopian duo Yenew Alamirew and Hagos Gebrhiwet were also back in action following their second and third places behind Mo Farah on Sunday. This time Alamirew again pipped the 19-year-old world junior cross-country champion, leading the Ethiopian one-two with his 13:06.69.
McCorory pips Montsho
London 2012 silver medallist Christine Ohuruogu ended the 2013 winning streak of world champion Amantle Montsho in Birmingham but she couldn’t demonstrate the same dominance in Lausanne, finishing fourth with 51.03.
It was again close between the top two, but this time it was Olympic gold medallist Francena McCorory who pipped Botswanan Montsho into second, 50.36 to 50.37. Jamaican Novlene Williams-Mills crossed in 50.87 for third.
A Birmingham 100m hurdles top-four lined up in Switzerland and again it was Dawn Harper-Nelson who dominated with a 12.53 season’s best, the 2008 Olympic champion finishing ahead of compatriots Kellie Wells (12.58) and Lolo Jones (12.60). Britain’s Olympic finalist and world indoor silver medallist Tiffany Porter was happy with her 12.65 season’s best for fifth, while world and Olympic champion Sally Pearson had to settle for seventh with 12.69.
Ukrainian Mariya Ryemyen came through strong in the last 40m to post 22.61 and see off the likes of Americans LaShauntea Moore (22.67) and Kimberlyn Duncan (22.73) in the women’s 200m. Making her second appearance on the track since injury, world 100m champion Carmelita Jeter bettered her seventh place finish in Birmingham with fifth in Lausanne with 22.77.
In-form Okagbare further proves versatility
Nigerian Blessing Okagbare followed up her 200m victory in Birmingham with a win in the long jump on Thursday night – her 6.98m PB to Olympic champion Brittney Reese’s 6.96m. British record-holder Shara Proctor leapt to a season’s best 6.92m for third.
Cuban world leader Pedro Pablo Pichardo’s 17.58m in the final round of the men’s triple jump competition placed him ahead of world indoor record-holder Teddy Tamgho of France (17.40m) and British-based US world and Olympic champion Christian Taylor (17.13m).
All the London 2012 Olympic medallists were competing in the men’s pole vault competition and one of the biggest surprises of the evening came as Olympic champion Renaud Lavillenie failed to clear his opening height of 5.62m. This left Greek Konstadinos Filippidis free to dominate as he cleared 5.72m for the win ahead of Brazilian Augusto Dutra (5.62m) and Germany’s Olympic bronze medallist Raphael Holzdeppe (5.62m).
Two big throws of 82.65m and 82.62m in the final two rounds of the javelin competition secured the win for Sweden’s Kim Amb ahead of Norway’s two-time Olympic Javelin champion Andreas Thorkildsen whose 81.54m was enough for second.
Culson cruises in 400m hurdles
The men’s 400m hurdles was originally going to be a race that read like another re-run of last year’s Olympic final but fourth-placer Dai Greene dropped out with reports that a blood test taken after his fifth-place finish in Birmingham showed he has a virus.
London 2012 bronze medallist Javier Culson continued his recent form with 48.14 to finish ahead of Olympic champion Felix Sanchez who made up for his seventh place in Birmingham with the runners-up spot (48.58).
There were still no sub-13 performances in the 110m hurdles, though a world-leading 13.03 was more than enough for injury-troubled American David Oliver to lead home a USA top-four containing Jason Richardson (13.20), Ryan Wilson (13.27) and David Payne (13.30) who took a nasty tumble after crossing the line.
The Netherlands’ 2012 European champion Churandy Martina came out on top in the men’s 200m with a season’s best 20.01 to add to up his victory in the 100m B race (10.03) earlier on in the evening as Britain’s James Ellington crossed in 20.46 for fourth.
» You can find full results from Lausanne here with a report and further pictures to be published in the July 11 issue of AW