Day 4 round-up

What do you do when your twin sister runs a PR? Monday morning, in the 400h semi-final, Lina Nielsen ran 54.43 for second place to qualify for the final, saying, “I can finally get rid of that 54.7.” A few hours later, Laviai lined up in the 400 flat final and ran her own PR of 50.71. She was sixth but only 5/1000th of a second from fifth. It was Laviai’s second PR of the championship.

Talking of 400m PRs, Charlie Dobson took silver in the men’s 400 with his own PR of 44.38. It was a remarkable achievement by an inexperienced athlete with huge potential, Dobson said “I have huge respect for Alexander (Doom) and it is fantastic to race him. This is the eighth individual 400m of my career, and most of them I have done have been uncontested, so it was great to have someone to pull me around. It paid off, I got a tenth off my best and a silver medal”.

The only thing that spoilt it was discovered afterward that the Belgian athlete calls himself “Dome,” not “Doom,” but it won’t stop the headlines about his brilliance leading to Dobson’s doom!

 In the women’s 400, Natalia Kaczmarek needed a Polish record of 48.98 to edge Ireland’s Rhasidat Adeleke (49.07) for gold. The previous Polish record had been set by breaking Irina Szewinska in 1976.

Natalia Kaczmarek, Lieka Klaver, 400m final, photo by European Athletics via Getty Images

France’s Alexis Miellet was a surprise winner of the men’s 3000m steeplechase in 8:14, explaining: “I was a 1500m runner for 11 years, and after being disqualified last year, my dad and my coach suggested to me to switch to the steeple. So, I have been training for steeple races since September. We do a technical session once a week. Five weeks ago, I did my very first steeple race, and I have run only five steeple races in the last five weeks before coming here. It is incredible to get a gold medal at the European championships here. I would not have believed you if you had told me a year ago about this gold medal”.

Italy’s remarkable championship continued in the women’s hammer, where Italy’s Sara Fantini threw 74.18m to take gold ahead of Poland’s Anita Wlodarczyk (72.92m). Fantini commented: “I dreamt of this success, but I didn’t expect it to come this season: in the past months, there were so many difficulties. Behind this medal is a lot of work and training, even on a psychological level. This year, I started a journey with a psychologist that allowed me to find a new balance with myself and a new tranquillity with my coach. I believe realizing what I have done will take some time”.

Switzerland took two of the three medals in the 200m, with Timothe Mumenthaler winning in 20.28.

Italy tops the medal table with 17 (8 gold), with Britain and France each on nine.