Kai Kazmirek at the 2015 Hypo-Meeting in Gotzis (© Jean-Pierre Durand)
As has become tradition, Germany’s top combined events exponents will be making their way to the Hypo-Meeting, part of this year's IAAF Combined Events Challenge, in the Austrian town of Gotzis on 28-29 May.
Not only will Kai Kazmirek defend the title he won in 2015 but he will be joined in the decathlon by European indoor silver medallist Arthur Abele, who was fifth at the 2014 European Championships.
World indoor bronze medallist Mathias Brugger will be looking to improve on his lifetime best of 8009 in order to improve his chances of selection for the European Championships or Rio 2016 Olympic Games.
In similar fashion, 2008 world junior champion Jan Felix Knobel, with a career best of 8288, will be looking to return to being one of the world’s leading combined eventers after several years of injury problems.
It has alreday been announced that Germany’s world bronze medallist Rico Freimuth will be making his sixth appearance in Gotzis this year.
In the heptathlon, Carolin Schafer – who, like Knobel, also won a world junior title in 2008 – returns to Gotzis to do battle with the defending champion Brianne Theisen-Eaton again after finishing second behind the Canadian in 2015 when setting her personal best of 6547.
Also in the German team is Claudia Rath, fourth and fifth at the 2013 and 2015 World Championships, and second in last year’s IAAF Combined Events Challenge.
Completing a squad of six German heptathletes with personal bests in excess of 6000 points are: two-time world medallist Jennifer Oeser, Olympic silver medallist Lilli Schwarzkopf, Anna Maiwald and Cindy Roleder.
Organisers for the IAAF