This is another of Stuart Weir’s pieces on Brussels, one of his favorite meetings. 


The Brussels Diamond League (Memorial Van Damme) opened on Thursday evening with a street event, the women’s shop put in the Place de la Monnaie in the center of the city. The main event was preceded by a national men’s and women’s competition.  The organizers served free wine and beer to the media – what was there not to like?

Chase Ealey, throwing in Brussels, 8 September 2023, photo by Stuart Weir

In Budapest, Chase Ealey won from Sarah Mitton, and the result was repeated here.  Olympic bronze medalist. Lijiao Gong was absent, but Auriol Dongmo was fourth in Brussels as in Budapest.  

The Brussels results were:

1 Chase Ealey  20.05

2 Sarah Mitton  19.76

3 Maggie Ewens 19.64

Ealey, who did not take the lead until the fifth round, said: “It took me a little bit to warm up. I just couldn’t quite feel the ball.  I hadn’t trained in a few days because I was sick, so I just kind of rested and then hoped that I was in the right movement.  I was, but it just little took a little longer to find it.

Chase Ealey, shot put, Brussels 2023, photo by Stuart Weir.

It was hard to come out again after Budapest.  I was talking to my coach, Paul, saying, ‘I feel like I’m done. You go to worlds, do the thing, and you’re not done.  How am I not done?’ He said the best thing was to think of it as 8 more hours of work, and then the season’s done, and I get some time off.  So I have two weeks to be ready for the Diamond League final and then vacation”.

The happy shot put field in Brussels, photo by Stuart Weir

She added, “I loved street meets.  I think they’re like some of the best meets we have.  It’s a good atmosphere – the one time where we get to like all the focus on us”.