Reigning world champion Daniel Stahl has been largely frustrated by his form in 2020 but the Swede produced the second longest throw of his career at the Sollentuna GP, a World Athletics Continental Tour Bronze Meeting, on Monday (10) evening.
Stahl highlighted the Sollentuna GP by launching the discus out to a world leading mark of 71.37m in the third round. His effort was initially deemed a foul but after protesting with the officials the red flag was rescinded and his mark was reinstated.
Stahl came within half-a-metre of his lifetime best and Swedish record of 71.86m and from a historical standpoint, his winning throw in Sollentuna last night was the 14th longest in history.
“I have become as strong as an ox compared to last year so it is important to time it right. That is what I have been working on since June,” said Stahl, who finished nearly five metres ahead of his training partner Simon Pettersson with 66.51m.
Stahl has won nine of his 10 competitions in 2020 - his only loss coming at the Impossible Games in Oslo where he didn’t record a valid throw - but he will face his sternest yet at this evening’s Paavo Nurmi Games in Turku where he will cross paths with the reigning European champion Andrius Gudzius from Lithuania and Slovenia’s Kristjan Ceh.
On a fruitful evening for Swedish athletics, Kalle Berglund broke the long-standing national record in the 2000m and became the first Swede to eclipse the five minute-barrier over the five laps of the track.
Berglund clocked 4:59.71 to break 1976 Olympic 3000m steeplechase champion Anders Garderud’s long-standing mark of 5:02.09 while Andreas Almgren also ducked under the previous record in second with 5:00.23. For Berglund, this performance marks confirmation he has returned to his best form after being diagnosed with the coronavirus in March.
“I have a lot to fall back on. It is easy to fall back to your old level. I have returned to the level I was in last summer and autumn,” said the world finalist.
There was very nearly a second national record in the middle distances with European silver medallist Andreas Kramer winning the 800m in 1:45.05, missing his national record by a mere two-hundredths.
Kramer defeated the best of the Brits with Elliot Giles finishing second in 1:45.46, just ahead of Jake Wightman and Daniel Rowden who were tied for third in 1:45.55.
Spain’s Esther Guerrero also produced another notable performance on the track. Fresh from breaking the national 2000m record, Guerrero strode out to victory in the 800m in 2:00.56 ahead of Great Britain’s Adelle Tracey in 2:01.98.
On the in-field Italy’s Leonardo Fabbri smashed his outdoor lifetime best in the shot put with 21.57m to move to second on the 2020 European list. This was the second longest throw of his career, bettered only by his indoor lifetime best which was also set on Swedish soil in Stockholm with 21.59m in February.
Angelica Bengtsson might have lost her national record to Michaela Meijer in recent weeks but the world sixth-placer took victory over her domestic rival in the pole vault - 4.64m to 4.44m. Elsewhere, Thobias Montler won the long jump with a wind-aided 8.05m - he also had a wind-legal 8.03m - and Erika Kinsey cleared 1.92m in the high jump.
Full results here.