Brazilian discus thrower Andressa de Morais (© Wagner Carmo)
Andressa de Morais improved her own South American discus record to 65.10m to produce the highlight of the 32nd Grande Prêmio Brasil Caixa de Atletismo, part of the IAAF World Challenge, on Sunday (8) at the National Athletics Development Centre’s (CNDA) Stadium in Bragança Paulista, Brazil.
The two-time Olympian and three-time South American champion had an impressive series in her four throws, opening the competition with 64.02m, followed by 63.30m, 64.49m and her record-breaking 65.10m, that moves seventh on the 2018 world list.
“I am super happy,” she said. “I wanted to break the 65-metre barrier since 2015 and it finally happened.” The 27-year old, who had been a 64-metre thrower since 2012, eclipsed her previous area record of 64.68m set at the 2017 South American Championships in Paraguay.
“I have had some important success such as my participation in the Diamond League (three events) and I look forward to the next stop in London,” she added.
Three days after setting a season’s best of 63.64m in Guadalajara, Spain, Fernanda Raquel Martins settled for second in 62.15m while 2014 world U20 champion Izabela da Silva completed Brazil’s medal sweep with a personal best of 58.85m.
Brazil’s Olympic pole vault champion Thiago Braz da Silva, looking for his first international win at home since the claiming the Olympic gold in 2016, had to settle for third with 5.40m.
“I did not like the result, but I am leaving the stadium happy as I did not feel pain in my injured foot,” said de Braz, who is scheduled to compete next at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in Rabat on 13 July.
USA’s Cole Walsh dominated the event with a 5.60m clearance, followed by Brazilian champion Augusto Dutra, who managed 5.50m.
“This is my first time in Brazil and I loved the country,” said Walsh. “The competition was excellent, the temperature, the weather and the wind helped us.”
Nazarov wins again
The other Olympic champion in action marked a successful return to Brazil since winning gold at the 2016 Games.
Tajikistan’s Dilshod Nazarov produced a best of 75.18m in the fourth and final round to secure victory in the men’s hammer, part of the IAAF Hammer Throw Challenge, finishing ahead of world finalists Serghei Marghiev (74.51m) of Moldova and Pavel Bareisha (73.28m) of Belarus.
“I love Brazil,” said the 36-year old, who has competed in Brazil 13 times since his first appearance in 2009. “The competition was not bad, but I hope to perform better next time.”
In a top-class contest, USA’s Curtis Jensen spoiled a Brazilian celebration in the men’s shot put as he improved his personal best by almost half a metre (21.63m) in the final round to deny South American record-holder Darlan Romani a victory in front of his home crowd.
“This is my personal best and I am now in the top 10 (sixth) in the world,” said Jensen.
Darlani was also satisfied with his 21.48m effort in the opening round. “It was a good result and I love competing here,” said Darlani, who lives and trains in Bragança Paulista.
Other top results came in the men’s 400m, where Olympic finalist Bralon Taplin of Grenada ran a season’s best of 44.67.
The Brazilian fans were pleased with sprinting wins by Vitoria Cristina Rosa and Paulo André de Oliveira.
Twenty-two-year-old Rosa, coming back from running a personal best of 11.03 in Spain on Thursday, confirmed her excellent form with 11.14 win in the 100m. 2016 world indoor champion Barbara Pierre and South American record-holder and 2017 world finalist Rosangela Santos followed her across the finish line with respective season’s bests of 11.18 and 11.23.
In the men’s race, Paulo Andre Oliveira held off Antigua and Barbuda’s Cejhae Greene to repeat his victory from 2017. Oliveira clocked 10.14, closely followed by Greene (10.16) and fellow Brazilian and 2016 Olympic 4x100m relay finalist Jorge Vides (10.22).
In its 32nd edition, the Grande Prêmio Brasil Caixa de Atletismo had a strong international flavour with 121 athletes from 28 countries. Other international winners were Cuba’s Liadagamis Povea (14.30m) in the triple jump and Yaniuvis Lopez (18.58m) in the shot put, Saint Lucia’s Levern Spencer (1.92m) in the high jump and Cyprus’s Apostolos Parellis (62.94m) in the men’s discus. Africa dominated as expected the 3000m steeplechase, thanks to Ethiopia’s Birtukan Adamu (9:59.97) and Nicholas Bett (8:27.03).
The United Sates celebrated two other wins in the men’s triple jump with Chris Carter (17.02m) and the women’s 100m hurdles with Ebony Morrison (13.41).
Javier Clavelo Robinson for the IAAF