Pawl Fajdek at the 2014 Miner’s Day meeting in Velenje, Slovenia (© Bob Ramsak)
Reigning world champion Pawel Fajdek produced a world-leading effort of 82.37m in the hammer throw to provide the highlight the 19th Miner’s Day meeting in Velenje, Slovenia on Tuesday (1).
Fajdek’s third round throw not only wrestled the world lead away from London 2012 Olympic Games champion Krisztian Pars, it was also a career best for the 25-year-old Pole and his first competition over 80 metres this year.
“I’m really surprised actually,” said Fajdek, whose throw added 10cm to his previous best set last year.
“I have had a really big pain in my back for the past four days. Today, I just spent a lot of time in bed. I felt it with every throw. Especially after each throw.”
He closed with two more efforts that landed beyond the 80-metre line, his last of 81.63m also better than the previous world lead of 81.57m set by Pars in Ostrava.
The Hungarian was second with 81.08m from the second round. Dilshod Nazarov of Tajikistan was a distant third at 78.16m while Primoz Kozmus, Slovenia’s 2008 Olympic and 2009 world champion, was a well-beaten sixth with 74.73m.
Fajdek said he respects the tough competition he regularly faces, but that his primary motivation comes from himself.
“I’m the world champion so I have to try to be the best all the time. I’m pleased that I beat Krisztian but we’ll compete in Budapest next week and I’ll have to be the best there again.”
There was a better outcome for the enthusiastic crowd at Velenje’s municipal stadium in the women’s javelin competition courtesy of national record holder Martina Ratej.
This season’s IAAF Diamond Race leader in the event threw 66.13m in the fifth round to score a confidence-boosting win over Germany’s world leader Linda Stahl who produced a best of 63.50m.
Opening with a modest 58.26m throw, it took the 32-year-old Ratej four rounds to find the rhythm that propelled what would be the second best throw of her career. Ratej throws next at the Diamond League stop in Lausanne on Thursday.
In addition to Ratej’s triumph in the javelin, other notable local victories came in the 100m hurdles and women’s pole vault.
Marina Tomic clocked 12.96 to win the former, the second fastest performance of her career, while 2006 IAAF World Junior Championships silver medallist Tina Sutej topped 4.50m on her second try to beat Germans Katharina Bauer and Karolin Hingst, who cleared 4.40m.
Sutej bowed out with three tries at a would-be national outdoor record of 4.62m, but none were particularly close.
Elsewhere, Kenya’s David Bett broke from a three-man pack over the final 300 metres to win the 5000m in 13:22.75, ahead of Olivier Irabaruta of Burundi who clocked 13:23.44.
Isaac Makwala of Botswana dominated the 200m in 20.32 while Serbia’s Amelia Terzic of Serbia won a competitive 1500m contest in 4:07.34, just ahead of Italy’s Federica del Buono, who was second in 4:07.56.
Sammy Kibet Kirongo, a member of Kenya’s winning 4x800m team at the IAAF World Relays in May, won his specialty over two laps of the track in 1:46.65.
Bob Ramsak for the IAAF