German sprinter Julian Reus (© Getty Images)
After a handful of close challenges in recent years, Frank Emmelmann’s German 100m record of 10.06 finally fell at the National Championships, held in Ulm on 25-27 July, as Julian Reus bettered it by one hundredth of a second.
The former European junior champion successfully defended his national title, but the national record fell in the semi-final when he clocked 10.05 (1.8m/s). He went faster in the final with 10.01, but it was marginally wind assisted with a 2.2m/s tailwind.
The 26-year-old has now sprinted into the frame as a medal contender for the European Championships next month, but he refuses to get carried away. “The worst thing that could happen would be if I was satisfied right now,” Reus told the German federation (DLV). “The most important competition of the year is in Zurich. Only at the end of the season will I look back on my season and realise what I’ve done.”
Emmelmann’s mark had survived several attacks recently. Reus himself clocked 10.09 in 2012, followed by 10.08 last year and a wind-assisted 10.00. Martin Keller ran 10.07 last year, while Lucas Jakubczyk recorded the same mark earlier this year.
Jakubczyk finished a close second to Reus in Ulm, also recording a wind-assisted 10.01, but was given second place in a photo finish.
Storl, Schwanitz and Harting dominate the throws
A German record may have fallen in the sprints, but elsewhere at the German Championships, the best quality marks came from the throwing events.
Two-time world champion David Storl put together an outstanding series in the shot as he won by more than two metres. All five of his measured throws landed beyond the 21-metre line with his best mark, 21.87m, coming in the final round. It is the third-best mark of his career and just 10cm shy of the recent PB he set at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in London.
World silver medallist Christina Schwanitz was equally as dominant in the women's event. All six of her marks would have been enough to win comfortably and she won with 19.69m, one of four throws farther than 19 metres.
Three-time world champion Robert Harting found 66.67m enough to win his eighth national discus title ahead of Martin Wierig’s 64.94m. In a high-quality final, six men surpassed the 60-metre barrier, including Harting’s younger brother Christoph, who threw 60.79m.
Klaas gets the better of Heidler
For just the fourth time in more than 100 clashes in a rivalry that goes back 13 years, Kathrin Klaas finished ahead of world record-holder Betty Heidler to win the hammer.
She did so comfortably too, landing four throws beyond the 70-metre line with her best, 72.08m, coming in the final round, while Heidler failed to breach that mark, settling for a best of 69.83m for second place.
Despite being one of the best hammer throwers in Germany – and the world – for the best part of a decade, this was Klaas’s first national title. It was also the third time this year that Klaas has beaten Heidler; before 2014, she had only beaten her once.
Elsewhere in the throws, Thomas Rohler won the javelin with 84.28m, beating European junior champion Julian Weber, who set a PB of 80.72m.
Shanice Craft underlined her status as the top female discus thrower in Germany this year, winning with a PB of 65.88m to beat former world youth champion Julia Fischer (63.02m) and 2012 world junior champion Anna Ruh (62.94m).
The closest throwing event was the women’s javelin, where Olympic bronze medallist Linda Stahl held off a strong challenge from training partner Katharina Molitor, 63.55m to 63.40m.
PBs galore in sprint hurdles
For the first time in more than two decades, four German women dipped below the 13-second barrier in the 100m hurdles.
After clocking a PB of 12.76 in the heats, Nadine Hildebrand went even faster in the final with 12.71, aided by a perfect 2.0m/s following breeze. The top five finishers all set PBs as Cindy Roleder finished second in 12.80, ahead of Franziska Hofmann (12.87) and Pamela Dutkiewicz (12.95).
In the men’s long jump, Paralympic champion Markus Rehm, a single-leg amputee, smashed his personal best to win with 8.24m, finishing four centimetres ahead of 2010 European champion Christian Reif.
There was a minor upset in the women’s 100m as Tatjana Pinto beat 2010 European champion Verena Sailer, 11.20 to 11.23. It was the first time that the 22-year-old Pinto had defeated the more experienced Sailer. Both ran faster in the heats, with the assistance of over-the-limit wind readings as Sailer clocked 11.02 (3.4m/s) and Pinto ran 11.11 (2.5m/s).
Jon Mulkeen for the IAAF