European indoor champion Konrad Bukowiecki of Poland in Belgrade (© Getty Images)
A clash between shot put giants Konrad Bukowiecki of Poland and Germany's David Storl has been confirmed for the Copernicus Cup, the fifth meeting on the 2018 IAAF World Indoor Tour, on 15 February in Torun, Poland.
Ten years ago Storl struck gold at the IAAF World U20 Championships in Bydgoszcz, not far from Torun, part of a junior career in which he rewrote the World and European record books. Just three years after his triumph in the Polish city, Storl added to his U18 and U20 titles by taking the world championship gold in Daegu at just 21. He followed up with Olympic silver in 2012 and has also collected three European titles outdoors and two world silver medals indoors.
The Polish strongman, seven years younger than the German, began supplanting Storl's records in 2014. He captured surprise gold at last year's European Indoor Championships in Belgrade with a 21.97m effort, the absolute Polish record.
"I always say, that I like to start in front of Polish fans," Bukowiecki said.
"I have high hopes for the Copernicus Cup. I had tough preparations, which were the hardest I’ve ever had. I hope it’ll pay off. I want to fight to win the Copernicus Cup. The vibe of the Torun Arena really helps in the competition."
The start list also includes Ryan Whiting of the US, the world indoor champion in 2012 and 2014, and Tomas Stanek of the Czech Republic, currently the world indoor leader with 21.61m.
The men's shot put is among the scoring disciplines for the 2018 IAAF World Indoor Tour in which athletes collect points towards the overall title in each event. The individual overall winner of each discipline upon conclusion of the tour will receive US$20,000 prize money and automatically qualify for the IAAF World Indoor Championships Birmingham 2018 by wild card.
Organisers and Bob Ramsak for the IAAF
2018 IAAF World Indoor Tour
3 Feb – Karlsruhe
6 Feb – Düsseldorf
8 Feb – Madrid
10 Feb – Boston
15 Feb – Torun
25 Feb – Glasgow