December 2009

Nobody expected anything great from 2009’s Track & Field world championships in Berlin. Except the Track & Field community, which could not wait for the beginning. It was on one week before the opening ceremony when a huge (around 20 ft x 35 ft) post card arrived in Germany’s capital. Good wishes from all over the world were written on it and just this giant card pulled a lot of attention on the event. Especially ‘Berliner’ found interest in a rarely coming back sports meet.

It finally opened their doors on August 14th in mid-summer with a quiet big opening in front of the Brandenburger Gate. The actual competitions started in the morning of the 15th to end on August 23rd in the late evening. It was stage for new talents, old dogs and especially ‘the World Record of the decade’! Usain Bolt crushing his own WR for the 100m dash from last year’s Olympics of 9.69, which was amazing back then on the blue track of Berlin’s Olympic Stadium. The new World record or better his new World Record was 0.11 seconds faster than his old one and is now 9.58! But also U.S. speedster Tyson Gay ran a PR and National Record of 9.71. Another WR was made by Usain Bolt again. The Jamaican super star also beat his own old WR for the 200m dash and is now down to 19.19. Coach Tilley told me: “I can’t wait until the day when this guy goes under 19 seconds! Dude, he’s amazing!”

But sprinting wasn’t the only highlight. What about Pole Vaulting? Isn’t that what you are interested? Okay, let’s start with the men’s competition. Australia’s super vaulter won again! Mr. Steven Hooker. With a height of 5.90 (19-4) - although he had a very painful injury on his left leg – he could beat the two French Romain Mesnil for silver with 5.85 (19-2) and Renaud Lavillenie for bronze with 5.80 (19-0). No Americans were qualified for the finale, which was surprising.

The women’s finale was even more surprising. World Record holder Yelena Isinbayeva could not qualify for it, instead the two Polish Anna Rogowska and Monika Pyrek, the American Chelsea Johnson, and the German Silke Spiegelburg jumped for the medals to finish it dramatically. Rogowska won gold (4.75/15-7) with a safe distance of 10cm to the next three girls, that all jumped the same height. All three of them (4.65/15-3) received the silver medal except Spiegelburg, because she only made the height on her second jump, while Pyrek and Johnson made it on their first.

All in all the 12th Track & Field World Championships were a great event and brought lots of fun to Berlin’s inhabitants. Especially new talents like Silke Spiegelburg for Pole Vaulting.

That’s all for this month’s article. Have a delicious December.


Chris  J