Leverkusen: Otto 5.90m, Atkins 20.50

Otto improves to 5.90m in Leverkusen
Saturday 11 August 2007
German pole vaulter Björn Otto cleared a personal best 5.90m in Leverkusen on Friday (10) to highlight ehe first of two German meetings this weekend, which are designed as a final test before the World championships in Osaka.

Fourth to clear 5.90m this year

Otto, 29, started the competition at 5.50m, and then cleared 5.70, 5.80 and 5.90m each on his second attempt to match his indoor best leap from February’s national indoor championships. Since he competes again in Wattenscheid on Sunday (12). he decided not to go higher. Otto clearly beat Danny Ecker, who took second with 5.70m. The German champion and European Indoor Champion had twice missed out on 5.80 and then tried 5.85 without success.

The women’s Pole vault was a close battle, with Julia Hütter and Carolin Hingst ending in a tie for the win. Both cleared each of their heights on their first attempts, including 4.57m, a personal best for Hütter. They then failed, along with Silke Spiegelburg, at 4.62m. Spiegelburg was third also with a 4.57 because of two failed attempts at 4.37m. But 4.57m was nonetheless a personal best for Spiegelburg as well.

Atkins - rising confidence

100m rising star Derrick Atkins (BAH) took a comfortable victory in the 200m in 20.50, beating Briton Chris Clarke (20.87) and German 400m specialist Ingo Schultz (21.04). Atkins then made a surprising statement, when he declared that he will go for gold at the World Championships: “This race was only a test. I have trained well and expected to win. Now my goal is to win the 100 metres in Osaka.”

The 100m Hurdles produced one of the best results in the women’s events. American Dawn Harper clocked 12.70 for the win with Derval O’Rourke of Ireland second with 12.97.

“I had a very good start and knew that I am in good form, but I did not expect a personal best today,” Harper said.

Portugal’s Naide Gomes took the Long Jump with a 6.83m leap from German Bianca Kappler (6.73). The meeting also produced sone fine results inthe women’s throws. Christina Obergföll once again confirmed her great form, reaching 67.04m to beat Steffi Nerius in an “away match”. Competing in her hometown, Nerius took second with 65.72m. Betty Heidler won the Hammer Throw with a 73.94m effort from from Andrea Bunjes (69.67).

Elsewhere, Ali Kamel Zakarya (QAT) was well ahead in the 3000m Steeplechase, which he won in 8:25.71 ahead of American Brian Olinger (8:37.31), and German Peter Sack took the Shot Put with a 19.96m throw from Petr Stehlik (CZE/19.41). Markus Esser won the Hammer Throw with 80.68m. He had three throws beyond the 80m mark.

Jörg Wenig for the IAAF

Click here for complete results