Naert and Stefanidi voted European Athletes of the Month for August 2018

Koen Naert
Getty Images

Koen Naert from Belgium won the men's marathon title at the Berlin 2018 European Athletics Championships in a championship record of 2:09:51 

Belgium’s Koen Naert and Greece’s Ekaterini Stefanidi have been voted male and female European Athletes of the Month for August.

Naert became the first athlete to break the 2:10-barrier for the marathon at the European Championships in Berlin. The Belgian ran a big negative split in challenging conditions to win the gold medal in a championship record and lifetime best of 2:09:51.

This was Belgium’s third gold medal of the championships, following on from Nafissatou Thiam’s title in the heptathlon and Belgium’s win in the men’s 4x400m relay.

Naert won with 1562 votes ahead of Sweden’s Armand Duplantis (1419) and Norway’s Jakob Ingebrigtsen (1211).

On the women’s side, Stefanidi defended her European pole vault title and improved her championship record to 4.85m, leading a Greek one-two ahead of Nikoleta Kiriakopoulou. Stefanidi also won the Zurich Diamond League with a season’s best of 4.87m.

Stefanidi tallied 861 votes ahead of treble European sprint champion Dina Asher-Smith (785).