Report28 Apr 2024

Brooks and Hauttekeete victorious at Multistars


Taliyah Brooks in the Multistars high jump (© Chiara Cuter / Spot&Sport)

USA’s Taliyah Brooks retained her Multistars heptathlon title by equalling her PB of 6330, while Belgium’s Jente Hauttekeete secured his first decathlon victory at a World Athletics Combined Events Tour Gold meeting, winning with 8020 in Brescia on Sunday (28).

Brooks began the defence of her heptathlon title with the day’s fastest 100m hurdles, clocking 13.14 into a headwind (-2.3m/s). But there was disappointment for China’s Asian Games champion Zheng Ninali, as she was disqualified.

The high jump was up next and Brooks cleared 1.77m – the second-best performance of the day behind Bianca Salming’s 1.83m – before throwing 13.11m in the shot. Austria’s 2018 world indoor pentathlon silver medallist Ivona Dadic, returning from injury, launched the implement 14.55m to top that event.

Brooks ended day one with a leading 200m time of 23.92, putting her 220 points ahead of Norway’s Ida Eikeng.

The second day started well for Brooks as she extended her lead by topping the long jump with 6.52m. It was also a strong discipline for Sweden’s Lovisa Karlsson (6.47m) and Switzerland’s Katelyn Adel (6.41m), both of whom set PBs to move into second and third overall respectively.

Eikeng excelled in the javelin, launching her spear out to 51.62m to move up to third overall. Ireland’s Kate O’Connor, twice a runner-up at Multistars, moved into second place overall thanks to her 49.28m effort.

Brooks was further down the field with 38.53m, but she still ended the event with a lead of almost 200 points with just the 800m to go.

Adel, who had put together the series of her life this weekend, continued her momentum into the 800m, smashing her PB to win it in 2:12.66. Salming followed in 2:13.49 and Brooks – buoyed by the knowledge she had the title in the bag – was close behind in 2:13.81, a PB.

It meant that the US heptathlete successfully defended her title by equalling the 6330 PB she set when winning at Multistars last year.

O’Connor, who clocked 2:15.14 in the final event, achieved her third Multistars runner-up finish with 6104 and Adel placed third with 6082 – a PB by more than 300 points. Karlsson just missed the podium, but was also rewarded with her first 6000-point tally, scoring 6051.

“I’m excited to come here, get a decent score and walk away healthy,” said Brooks. “I got the exact same score as last time. Last year I was really happy with my 800m, and this year is the same – I set a PB by two seconds. It’s something I’ve been working really hard on.”

Hauttekeete times challenge to perfection

Jente Hauttekeete may not have topped the leader board in any of the individual disciplines, but the 22-year-old’s overall consistency in the decathlon led to him taking the title with 8020, the second-best score of his career.

Switzerland’s Nino Portmann took an early lead, winning the first 100m heat in 10.91. Belgium’s Robin Bodart won his heat in 10.93 for the day’s second-fastest time and Teo Bastien led heat three in 11.04 to put him fifth overall after one event, just ahead of Hattekeete (11.06).

Bastien, the 2021 European U20 bronze medallist, soared into the lead after the next event, going close to his long jump PB with a leap of 7.82m. Hauttekeete, the world U20 heptathlon record-holder, was sixth at that stage after leaping 7.37m.

A 14.12m throw moved Hauttekeete up to fourth following the shot put, with Bastien holding on to the lead thanks to an outdoor PB of 13.84m. Czechia’s 2016 European silver medallist Adam Helcelet made his presence felt at this stage, launching the shot 15.31m to place him fifth overall, with Yuma Maruyama and Jose Fernando Ferreira Santana completing the top five.

Hauttekeete and Santiago Ford both soared clear at 2.01m in the high jump, which moved them to second and third respectively behind Bastien (1.95m). His lead was 45 points at that stage but Hauttekeete ran 49.16 to Bastien’s 50.10 in the 400m – the final event of the day – to take the gap to just a single point at the half way stage.

Ferreira Santana dominated the 110m hurdles at the start of day two and was the only man to finish inside 14 seconds, clocking 13.88. Hauttekeete took a brief lead thanks to his 14.44 clocking, while Bastien managed 14.51, but the French all-rounder responded in the next event, throwing a discus PB of 43.49m to regain the lead.

Hauttekeete threw 40.13m, and Chile’s Santiago Ford moved up the leaderboard into third after sending his disc flying out to 47.84m, the best of the day. Murayama, meanwhile, set his third PB of the competition with 46.21m.

Belgium’s Thomas van der Plaetsen, the 2016 European champion, was a non-starter for the next discipline. But his compatriot Bodart ensured a Belgian still topped that event, vaulting 5.15m. Bastien was next best, extending his lead thanks to a 5.05m clearance, while Hauttekeete remained in contention with 4.85m.

The discipline ended with disappointment for Murayama, though, as he landed awkwardly on his final attempt at 4.65m and was forced to exit the competition.

Hauttekeete threw a PB of 56.04m in the javelin, but he was bumped down to third place after Ferreira Santana launched his spear out to 67.47m. Bastien increased the gap between him and Hauttekeete, throwing 56.98m.

Bastien had a 138-point lead over Hauttekeete going into the 1500m. Although the Belgian was a far superior 1500m runner, he still needed to finish 25 seconds ahead of Bastien to secure the victory.

Switzerland’s Andrin Huber was a comfortable winner of the 1500m, clocking 4:23.99, then Estonia’s Risto Lillemets crossed the line a few seconds later, closely followed by Hauttekeete (4:30.80). Bastien, meanwhile, finished outside five minutes (5:02.75).

It meant that Hauttekeete took the victory with 8020 from Lillemets (7971). Bastien held on for third place with 7963, just 26 points ahead of Ferreira Santana.

“I just kept going and fought until the end and now I’m here in first position,” said Hauttekeete. “I knew I needed to finish 25 seconds ahead of Bastien and I knew that would be tough. But it’s never over until the end.”


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