Valerie Adams, winner of the Shot in Lucerne (© Organisers)
Brianna Rollins, Valerie Adams, Jason Young, Yarisley Silva and Linda Stahl highlighted the Spitzen Leichtathletik EA Classic meeting at the Allmend Stadium in Lucerne on Wednesday (17).
These athletes shared the $20,000 jackpot which was awarded to the best performers of the evening.
USA’s rising 100m Hurdles star Brianna Rollins, who sensationally broke Gail Devers’ American record with 12.26 at the US Championships in Des Moines last month, clocked a winning 12.63 into a headwind of -0.4 m/s in her first European race as a professional athlete.
In a rematch of the US Championships, Rollins, the third-fastest woman of all time, beat US silver medallist Queen Harrison (12.79) and Kristi Catlin (12.80).
“I don’t put pressure on myself, I felt great competing for the first time in Europe and the Swiss crowd were appreciative,” said Rollins. “I am satisfied with the time. I took some time off after the US Championships to prepare for my debut in Europe. I will run in Monaco and in Finland before returning to the USA to finish my preparation for the World Championships in Moscow.”
Jamaican sprinter Jason Young won in Lucerne for the consecutive year, again dipping under the 20-second barrier with 19.98 into a headwind of -0.3 m/s, one year after he set his PB of 19.86 in his breakthrough race on the same fast track.
Jaysuma Saidy Ndure finished runner-up in 20.36 ahead of USA’s Curtis Mitchell (20.51). The Norwegian record-holder had earlier cruised to an easy win in the 100m in a season’s best of 10.07 ahead of Kemar Hyman of the Cayman Islands.
World and Olympic champion Valerie Adams won the Shot Put clash against European indoor champion Christina Schwanitz, throwing 20.76m. Her next four best attempts – 20.64m, 20.36m, 19.71m and 19.70m – would have been enough to win over the German who produced her best release of 19.65m in the third attempt. It marked Schwanitz’s first loss of 2013, having won her past 14 competitions this year.
It was a popular win for Adams who is based in the Swiss town for most of the year. “Switzerland is my second home and I enjoy competing here,” said Adams. “My motivation is to continue winning and work to defend my world title in Moscow.
“Today is the birthday of my late mother,” she added. “This period is special for me as my brother was chosen in the NBA draft. I’m very proud of him.”
Olympic Pole Vault silver medallist Yarisley Silva from Cuba, who holds the Central American record with 4.90m, had a clean sheet at 4.51m and 4.61m before clearing 4.71m and 4.81m on her second attempts. Silva then made one attempt at 4.91m and one at 5.00m.
German record-holder Silke Spiegelburg cleared 4.41m, 4.51m and 4.61m at the first time of asking before failing three attempts at 4.81m. The enthusiastic locals were thrilled by the Swiss record set by Nicole Buchler who improved it by one centimetre by vaulting 4.61m.
Former European champion Linda Stahl from Germany took the win in the Javelin with a solid 65.24m on her sixth attempt in a battle against 2012 European champion Vira Rebryk, who threw 63.94m on her fifth attempt.
Stahl started with 60.64m and improved with each of her five remaining attempts (61.81m, 62.44m, 62.79m, 63.46m and 65.24m). Australia’s Kimberley Mickle finished third with 62.38m.
Andrew Riley, this year’s Jamaican champion and last year’s 100m and 110m Hurdles NCAA champion, edged 2009 World champion Ryan Brathwaite and 2011 World champion Jason Richardson in the 110m Hurdles, clocking 13.32. Brathwait was second in 13.36 with Richardson third (13.38).
Jamaican Carrie Russell dominated the women’s 100m in 11.20, beating Brazilian Franciela Krasucki (11.29) and former World junior 200m champion Sheniqua Ferguson (11.39).
In the 200m, Krasucki was again beaten by a Jamaican, this time Anneisha McLaughlin taking the win, 22.79 to 22.85. Christine Day continued the Jamaican domination of women’s sprints in Lucerne, winning the 400m in 51.91.
USA’s Justin Gaymon edged Cuban Omar Cisneros in the men’s 400m Hurdles in 48.69 to 48.76. European champion Rhys Williams set a PB of 48.84 in third.
US middle-distance runners scored a 1-2 in the men’s 800m with Charles Jock first in 1:46.18 and Moscow-bound Brandon Johnson second in 1:46.41.
Kenyan Cornelius Kangogo crossed the finish line in the men’s 3000m in 7:42.51 ahead of US 3000m Steeplechase record-holder Evan Jager (7:43.36) and David Torrence (7:43.36).
Mirela Demireva won the women’s High Jump on count-back over German Marie-Laurence Jungfleish at 1.87m. Lauma Griva from Latvia clinched the women’s Long Jump with 6.58m over German Lisa Steinkamp (6.53m) and Swiss record-holder Irene Pusterla (6.48m).
The US quartet formed by Tori Bowie, Mandy White, Muna Lee and Vashti Thomas won the 4x100m unchallenged in 43.75. The Portuguese 4x100 team formed by Diogo Antunes, Francis Obikwelu, Arnaldo Abrantes and Yazakles Nashimento notched up close victory over a US team in 39.23, winning by 0.05.
Diego Sampaolo for the IAAF