Italy dominates 10,000m race walk; Vicente breaks long jump championship record

Davide Finocchietti
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In the only final of the morning session on the second day of the European Athletics U18 Championships in Gyor, Hungary Italy's tradition in the race walking was maintained as Davide Finocchietti (45:01.33) and Aldo Andrei (45:03.50) in the 10,000m race walk.

"Winning this competition here is a dream come true! We are friends with Andrei Aldo, and I am proud of him as well. It is amazing that we will go to the podium together," said Finocchietti, who broke away on the penultimate lap.

With France's Matteo Duc penalised after crossing the finish-line in third place, the bronze medal went to Turkey's Ozgur Topsakal in 45:09.22. 

European Athletics Vice President Dobromir Karamarinov has explained the decision to penalise the French athlete. 

Duc crossed the line in third place after a strong battle with Aldo in the fight for second place and a silver medal. When Duc crossed the line, however, he was told he would receive a 60 second penalty meaning he moved down to seventh place thus missing out on a bronze medal position.

“The French athlete Matteo Duc made a third technical error in the final part of the race when fighting for second place and, as a result, immediately after the race was completed he was penalised by 60 seconds,” said Karamarinov. “This decision to penalise the athlete was made by the Race Walk Chief Judge and was not a consequence of a complaint or an appeal from any other party or Federation.” 


Vicente breaks championship record in the heptathlon long jump

Maria Vicente doubled her already significant lead in the heptathlon in the very first event of the second day.

The reigning world U18 champion went out to a wind-aided 6.31m in the second round before going even further with her third jump, hitting the sand at 6.37m. The wind was legal at 1.8 m/s and her mark also represented a championship record. 

Vicente's mark was the second best at European U18 level this season behind Italy's Larissa Iapichino's 6.38m. She would have undoubtedly contended for the title in the individual long jump but due to a clash in the timetable, Vicente has instead opted to contest the triple jump tomorrow - an event in which she is ranked second on the European U18 lists behind Bulgaria's Aleksandra Nacheva.

Vicente, who led by 238 points after the 200m, now leads by 438 points ahead of Authorised Neutral Athlete Vilena Komarova (4274 points) and Sweden's Klara Rabdo (4162 points) although the event leader is by no means complacent. "It was amazing to break the championship record, but for me it is more important that my performances are improving," she said. "I need to stay focused, because there is still a long way to go."

Kokhan eclipses championship record in hammer qualifying

One day after Valeriya Ivanenko set a championship record of 74.36m in the qualifying of the women's hammer, reigning world U18 champion and teammate Myhaylo Kokhan followed suit in the qualifying round of the men's hammer.

A throw of 73.00m would have sufficed for a position in the final but Kokhan didn't leave anything to chance, sending the 5kg implement out to a championship record of 82.42m with his first throw. That mark eclipsed the record set by his compatriot Myhaylo Havrylyuk set at the inaugural edition of the championships in Tbilisi 2016.

There were also two championship records in the 110m hurdles. Great Britain's Sam Bennett clocked 13.33 to lower the record by 0.06 before France's Kenny Fletcher improved the record to 13.30 to equal his European U18 lead.

Ahead of tonight's 100m final, Norway's Pal Haugen Lillefosse entered the pole vault qualifying at 4.80m which he cleared on his second attempt to qualify for the final. Reigning world U18 high champion Yaroslava Mahuchikh from Ukraine safely made it through to the high jump and Great Britain's highly rated Max Burgin, who has already clocked 1:47.50 over 800m, eased through to the semifinals.