Mon, Jun 20, 2011 - Page 19 News List

Lemaitre clocks fastest Europe time since 2004

AP, STOCKHOLM

Christophe Lemaitre of France, center, crosses the finish line on Saturday to win ahead of Dwain Chambers of Great Britain, left, and Francis Obikwelu of Portugal during the European Team Championships men’s 100m race, at the Stockholm Olympic Stadium in Stockholm, Sweden.

Photo: AFP

France’s Christophe Lemaitre set a new national record as he won the 100m in 9.95 seconds on the first day of the European Team Championships on Saturday.

The 21-year-old Lemaitre led from the start to beat last year’s winner Dwain Chambers of Britain and set the fastest time by a European since Portugal’s Francis Obikwelu ran a European record 9.86 seconds in 2004.

In the women’s 100m, Veronique Mang earned a double for France as she held off Ukraine’s Olesya Povh to win in 11.23 seconds.

Aleksandr Menkov was one of five Russian winners, taking the men’s long jump with a championship record leap of 8.2m. Teammate Maksim Dyldin won the 400m in 45.82 seconds, while Olesya Syreva took the women’s 3,000m in 8:53.2, Gulnara Galkina won the 3,000m steeplechase in 9:31.20, and Mariya Savinova claimed the 800m in 1:58.75.

Last year’s champion Russia has 213 points and leads the competition with one day remaining, ahead of Germany with 183.5 and Britain with 166.

Britain’s David Greene took the 400m hurdles in 49.21 seconds to break Russia’s early dominance on the track on a sunny day in the Swedish capital. The British team claimed another win in the last event of the day, winning the men’s 4x100m in 38.60 seconds.

David Storl gave Germany an early 12 points with a throw of 20.81m in the shot put, while Betty Heidler reached 73.43m to win the women’s hammer throw, and another German, Christina Obergfoell, took the women’s javelin with a world-leading 66.22m.

In the pole vault, Anna Rogowska of Poland beat Germany’s Silke Spiegelburg as both nailed jumps of 4.75m, the best in the world this year.

Another milestone was reached in the women’s 400m hurdles, with Zuzana Hejnova of the Czech Republic racing clear of the field to win in a national record 53.87 seconds.

In the men’s 1,500m, Spain’s Manuel Olmedo held off Valentin Smirnov of Russia to win in 3:38.63, while countryman Jesus Espana won the men’s 5,000m in 13:39.25.

Ukraine got its first 12 points when Antonina Yefremova won the women’s 400m in 51.02 seconds, before the country took three rapid-fire wins in field events — Dmytro Demyanyuk won the men’s high jump with a the year’s leap of 2.35m, Olha Saladuha jumped 14.85m to win the women’s triple jump and Dmytro Kosynskyy took the men’s javelin with a throw of 81.29m.

The fourth-placed Ukrainian team rounded off its whirlwind end to day one with victory in the women’s 4x100m relay in 42.85 seconds.

The European Team Championships meet is the successor to the European Cup, with one athlete from each of Europe’s 12 top-performing countries competing in each of the 20 men’s events and 20 women’s events.

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