The cool conditions in Turku might not have been ideal for sprinting but world 200m champion Ramil Guliyev and former world and European 110m hurdles champion Sergey Shubenkov both came away with fast times from the Paavo Nurmi Games on Tuesday (5) evening.
Guliyev has been seventh over 200m in Eugene and eighth over 100m in Rome in recent weeks but the 28-year-old rediscovered his form in Turku, winning the 200m in 20.23 in still air. Guliyev won by a clear distance from South Africa’s Luxolo Adams in 20.70 with Greece’s Likourgos-Stefanos Tsakonas third in 20.72. Anaso Jobodwana, who has clocked 20.07 this season, was fifth in 20.84.
This was Guliyev’s second notable win on Finnish soil in the space of a year. In similarly inclement conditions, Guliyev won the European Athletics Team Championships First League in Vaasa last June in a championship record of 20.20.
Shubenkov followed up his victory in Hengelo on Sunday in 13.23 with another win in Turku, improving his season’s best to 13.18. He was a decisive winner over some of his prospective rivals at the Berlin 2018 European Athletics Championships with Hungary’s Balazs Baji and France’s Pascal Martinot-Lagarde a distant second and third respectively in 13.53 and 13.60.
Great Britain’s Meghan Beesley defeated a good field in the 400m hurdles in 56.42 and France’s Mamadou Kasse Hann won the men’s 400m hurdles in 50.01. European U23 champion Finette Agyapong also won the women’s 200m in 23.50.
Kirt defeats the Germans; Nowicki over Fajdek in the hammer
The standard of javelin throwing in Europe is such that the Germans might not have things entirely their own way at the European Championships in Berlin this August.
World silver medallist Jakub Vadlejch will be a danger to the Germans again after going out to 89.02m in Prague on Monday and Estonia’s Magnus Kirt improved the national record for the second time in the space of three days, taking some very big scalps in the process.
Two days after winning on home soil in Tartu with 88.45m to break former world champion Andrus Varnik’s long-standing national record, Kirt improved the record again to 88.73m in the second round to surpass Andreas Hofmann’s opening round throw of 85.98m.
Olympic champion Thomas Rohler challenged Kirt’s lead in the fourth round with 87.51m to move ahead of Hofmann in second while reigning world champion Johannes Vetter had to settle for fourth with 82.50m.
In the hammer, Pawel Fajdek suffered his first defeat of the season to the hands of teammate Wojciech Nowicki, the perennial bronze medallist in major championships. Nowicki set a season’s best of 79.41m in the second round, beating Fajdek’s best effort of 78.86m.
But there were no such upsets in the women’s discus. Sandra Perkovic won the competition with her opening round throw of 66.22m which was then followed by five successive no-throws. Cubans Yaime Perez and Denia Caballero were second and third respectively with 63.81m and 62.93m.