Johannes Vetter produced the world’s best javelin throw since late January to win at the Kuortane Games, a World Athletics Continental Tour Bronze meeting, on Saturday (1).
On a good day for field events in the Finnish city, world champion Daniel Stahl won the discus with 68.68m and Britain’s Holly Bradshaw topped 4.73m to win the pole vault.
Vetter, the 2017 world champion, opened his series with 80.69m – the first 80-metre effort so far this year by a German thrower – but Sweden’s Kim Amb took an early lead with his opening throw of 82.51m.
Amb extended his lead in round three with 82.64m and then threw 85.68m in round four. Vetter, meanwhile, had fouls in the second and third rounds before improving to 81.69m in the fourth. Latvia’s Gatis Cakss threw 82.73m during that round, bumping Vetter down to third.
Vetter improved to 84.19m in the penultimate round to move back into second, while Cakss responded with 82.92m and Amb consolidated his series with 84.27m. With his final throw of the day, however, Vetter sent his spear out to 86.94m, his best throw since the qualifying round of the World Athletics Championships Doha 2019. Amb recorded a foul with his final throw, leaving Vetter as the winner.
“Solid start, but much more to come,” Vetter posted on Instagram following the competition.
The discus was similarly competitive. Simon Pettersson took the early lead with 64.07m before Stahl responded with 65.91m in the next round. Pettersson briefly regained the lead in round three with 66.11m, but Stahl took it back again just minutes later with 67.51m.
Pettersson didn’t improve in the final three rounds, but Stahl produced a stadium record of 68.48m in round four to seal the victory.
Bradshaw also broke a competition record with her victory, clearing 4.73m in the pole vault. The European indoor silver medallist had first-time clearances at 4.40m, 4.50m and 4.60m before getting over 4.73m on her second try. She ended with three unsuccessful attempts at 4.82m, but was still content to finish with her best ever outdoor seasonal debut mark.
Elsewhere, Latvia’s Lina Muze won the women’s javelin with 62.75m, overtaking Nikola Ogrodnikova (60.61m) in the penultimate round. Annimari Korte won the 100m hurdles in 12.88 (0.0) from fellow Finn Nooralotta Neziri (12.96).
Jon Mulkeen for World Athletics