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Irrepressible Isinbayeva flies to 4.95m World record in Madrid
Saturday 16 July 2005
Madrid, Spain - Olympic Pole Vault champion Yelena Isinbayeva of Russia, the IAAF Overall World Ranked number one athlete improved her World record tonight at the ‘Meeting de Atletismo Madrid 2005’ - IAAF Super Grand Prix - thanks to a 4.95m** second time clearance.
Today’s success comes exactly two years and three days after her first World record at 4.82 set in Gateshead on 13 July 2003. Her previous mark of 4.93 set in Lausanne has only lasted 11 days.
This is the second time that Isinbayeva has broken a World record in Madrid as she set the World Indoor record of 4.90 when winning the European title in the city on 6 March this year.
Isinbayeva’s opening height tonight was 4.65 and had gave us all a serious scare as she was only successful on her third try. Then she went straight to 4.95 which she surpassed on her second effort.
“The weather conditions today were far from ideal because of the annoying wind and sun. I took advantage of a brief moment in which the wind almost disappeared and managed the World record,” said the all conquering winner.
Asked about why she tried 4.95 and not 4.94 (the previous record stood at 4.93) the multiple record holder was quoted as saying: “Last Sunday in Rethymno I failed 4.94 so today I decided to attempt a different height” to add: “Competing in Madrid is marvellous. Madrid has become a very special city for me. This is my second record here and I’m extremely grateful to the crowd for their support; this record is for all them”.
Bubka’s record haul the target
Virgilijus Alekna of Lithuania
Asked on her centimetre by centimetre approach (except today) to the 5 metres barrier the 23-year-old star from Volgograd confirmed: “There are two main reasons for that: firstly, my event is now more spectacular than it used to be; in addition my target is to break 36 World records and beat Sergey Bubka’s mark of 35”.
The World record holder once again confirmed that she has surpassed the 5.00m barrier several times in practice. She is scheduled to compete in London next Friday 22 July and Stockholm (26 July) before the World Championships in Helsinki. The World crown is the only missing title in her superb haul of major medals.
Phillips – 8.47m and Alekna – 70.67m
Two more world season leading marks were set today by two Olympic champions such as America’s Dwight Phillips, 8.47 in the Long Jump and Lithuania’s Virgilijus Alekna, 70.67 in the Discus.
Annoyed at US Champs loss
At a pre-meeting press conference World and Olympic Long Jump champion Dwight Phillips had already warned: “I’m in good shape, I leapt 8.39 in Rome last week and hope to jump beyond 8.60 in Madrid”. Phillips also confirmed that after the indoor campaign – where he focused on his speed work – he had suffered a hamstring injury which has delayed his build-up for the Worlds. He also confessed that “my defeat to Miguel Pate at the US Trials annoyed me a lot but it’s forgotten and I look forward to retaining my Word title in Helsinki where a 8.50m leap could suffice to succeed”.
Phillips opened with a foul but bounced back to leap a second round world seasonal best of 8.47 in a following wind of 1.1. His third effort was measured at 8.34 (+2.0) and he also produced a 8.44 four-round leap. Jamaica’s World silver medallist James Beckford was second thanks to his windy (+3.0) third try of 8.28 while his best valid jump was measured at 8.14.
US champion Miguel Pate had to settle for third on this occasion (8.24, +0.6), Ghana’s Ignisious Gaisah came fourth in 8.16 (+04), while Spain’s Olympic bronze medallist Joan Lino Martínez reached a season best of 8.10 (+1.6) for fifth.
Alekna maintains winning-streak
Twice Olympic champion Lithuania’s Virgilijus Alekna clinched his 11th win in a row this season with a 70.67 fifth-round toss to better by nine centimetres his own world season’s best. The 33-year-old remains unbeaten this year and has showed a notable consistency having exceeded the 70m barrier three times while his weakest performance has been 67.91. His complete series was: 66.49 – 68.60 – x – 69.97 – 70.67 – x.
Alekna had no real challenge from the rest of the quality field as he built a six-metre winning margin over South Africa’s Frantz Kruger, second thanks to his 64.69 third-round effort while Estonia Gerd Kanter – the only other athlete having thrown beyond 70m this year – came third in 64.51. Spain’s Mario Pestano beat Hungary’s Olympic silver medallist Zoltan Kövago in the battle for the fourth place, 64.38 and 64.01 their respective releases.
47.92 400m hurdles win for Jackson over Sánchez
America’s Bershawn Jackson, runner-up at last month’s US Championships in Carson produced a perfectly judged 400m Hurdles run to clearly beat World and Olympic champion Félix Sánchez of the Dominican Republic. Sánchez was fastest from the blocks and kept his dominance until the eighth barrier but from then on it was the 22-year-old Jackson who moved to the front overtaking a fading Sánchez in the last 50m.
Jackson’s clocking was particularly praiseworthy as the strong head-wind in the home straight hampered his effort. Once he was passed, a disappointed Sánchez jogged across the finish line in fifth place with a 49.48 clocking. Panama’s Bayano Kamani was second in 48.96.
An elated Jackson declared: “This is my first European appearance after the trials and this win over Sánchez is an enormous boost thinking of Helsinki. I’ll go for the gold there”.
Meanwhile a serious but still optimistic Sánchez said: “After my opening race in Santo Domingo (48.4 on 14 May) I got injured. I have lost strength and speed but I still have enough time until the Worlds to improve my shape and reach an unprecedented hat trick of 400m Hurdles victories at the World Championships. The winning time does not matter, I want a third World crown”. Sanchez plans to compete next in Stockholm (26 June).
74.27m for Skolimowska
Poland’s 2000 Olympic champion Kamila Skolimowska was a more-than convincing winner in the women’s Hammer Throw with a sixth round release of 74.27, a massive PB since her previous best remained at 72.60 back in 2002. Skolimowska’s performance is also makes her the third furthest thrower this year only bettered by Russia’s Tatyana Lysenko’ yesterday’s World record of 77.06 and France’s Manuela Montebrun’s 74.66.
Cuba’s World champion Yipsi Moreno had led the contest from the opening round (69.19) to strengthen her leadership with her second effort of 71.75 but the reigning Olympic silver medallist could not go further in the remaining rounds and had to settle for second. Romania’s Mihaela Melinte, who held the World record until yesterday came third with a 68.23 heave.
Slightly windy 7.20m for Kotova
Russia’s Olympic Long Jump bronze medallist Tatyana Kotova provided another of the highlights of the meeting by leaping to a slightly (2.3) windy 7.20m in her last effort. Kotova’s contest was superb as she also manage three more 7.00+ windy jumps. Her complete series was: 7.01 (4.0) – 7.06 (2.8) – 7.15 (5.5) – 6.84 (3.9) – x – 7.20 (2.3).
Fresh from a 6.96 win at the Russian championships last Wednesday, the 28-year-old Kotova said: “I don’t fear anyone in Helsinki. If my technique goes well I’ll take the win. I’ll try to break the world record next year” also announced a jubilant Kotova. The World record stands at 7.52 by Galina Chistiakova back in 1988 while Kotova remains in fifth place with a 7.42 mark in 2002.
Spain’s former World junior champion Concha Montaner smashed her PB to 6.92 in a tailwind of 1.7 and rose to the third place on this year’s world list only behind the Russian pair of Irina Simagina (7.04) and Tatyana Kotova (6.96).
Thrilling 800m wins for Bungei and Calatayud
With this season’s four fastest men in contention the 800m presaged a new world leading mark but that was not possible. Led through the 400m mark in 51.52 Kenya’s Wilfred Bungei took command of the race with 300 left there was not catching him and he romped home in 1:44.42. Spain’s Antonio Reina thrilled the home crowd as he almost caught Bungei in the home straight but finally had to settle for second equalling his SB of 1:44.80. Bahrain’s Yousuf Saad Kamel came third in 1:44.89.
In the women’s event Cuba’s Zulia Calatayud overtook Maria Mutola in the final 50m to clinch a fine win in 1:58.81 0.36 seconds ahead of Morocco’s Olympic silver medallist Hasna Benhassi who was only sixth with 300 to go leaving so much to do for the final stages. A fading Mutola was third in 1:59.58. “Despite the quality of my rivals, I’m not especially impressed for my today’s performance as my training is going really well and I know that I can run even faster” said the Cuban.
Menéndez narrowly beats Bisset
This year’s top two Javelin throwers Cuba’s reigning Olympic champion Osleydis Menéndez and her compatriot Sonia Bisset clashed again on Spanish soil. At halfway Bisset led the contest with a 64.21 third-round effort what was to be her best throw. Menéndez went to the front thanks to her 64.29 fourth attempt to take revenge from her defeat to Bisset in Salamanca earlier this month.
Olsen puts 21.32
Denmark’s Olympic Shot Put bronze medallist Joachim Olsen ended the winning hopes of everyone else with his second toss of 21.32, a new season’s best. American Reese Hoffa took second in the sixth round with a 20.98 heave, while his fellow countryman Dan Taylor was third on 20.52.
In the women’s High Jump, Sweden’s Kajsa Bergqvist had a flawless card up to and including 1.98 before failing three times over 2.01 which is precisely her world leading performance. Bulgaria’s Venelina Veneva and Ukraine’s Vita Palamar tied for the runner-up position due to their identical contest ending with first time clearances over 1.95.
Emeterio Valiente for the IAAF
with assistance from Sergio Hernández-Ranera
**subject to ratification