Report23 Feb 2024

Charlton threatens world record in Madrid


Devynne Charlton on her way to winning in Madrid (© Sportmedia)

Devynne Charlton came within 0.01 of equalling her own world indoor 60m hurdles record to highlight the World Athletics Indoor Tour Gold meeting in Madrid on Friday (23).

The Bahamian sprint hurdler’s winning performances was one of five meeting records on an enthralling evening of track and field action as athletes fine-tune their preparations ahead of the World Athletics Indoor Championships Glasgow 24, which start one week from today.

Charlton heads to the British city in incredible form, and her performance in Madrid this evening was a clear sign to her rivals that she’ll be tough to beat next weekend.

At the start of the evening, two-time European indoor champion Nadine Visser won the first 60m hurdles heat in 7.79 to equal the meeting record. Charlton then matched that time to win the second heat, easing down towards the end.

They were back on track just under two hours later for the final race of the evening, and it soon became clear who the world’s leading sprint hurdler is. Charlton pulled ahead with stride, gliding over the barriers with precision. When she crossed the line, the clock first flashed up with 7.67, which would have equalled her own world record. The time was later adjusted to 7.68, the equal third-fastest time in history and a meeting record.

Visser was second in 7.78, just 0.01 shy of her PB, and Pia Skrzysowska was third in 7.83.

“I set myself all of these goals,” said Charlton after being declared the winner of the World Indoor Tour. “I said I wanted to win the World Indoor Tour and break the world indoor record and I want to be a world indoor champion, so I’m just ticking all of the boxes. There’s just one more to go.

“If this is any preview to the World Indoors, then I’d say I’m on the right track.

“I’m having fun,” she added. “My coach had been telling me for a while that I’m capable of these things, so to see it all come true is a wonderful feeling.”

Meeting records for Tecuceanu, Diaz, Campbell and Miklos

Catalin Tecuceanu produced a stunning display of front running to win the men’s 800m. Not only was he rewarded with a world lead, a national indoor record and a meeting record, the Italian also jumped to the top of the World Indoor Tour standings.

Catalin Tecuceanu wins the 800m in Madrid

Catalin Tecuceanu wins the 800m in Madrid (© Sportmedia)

Most of the home crowd was focused on what was happening between Spanish duo Mohamed Attaoui and Adrian Ben. The former was recently selected for the World Indoor Championships, while the latter just missed out and so headed into this race highly motivated.

But Tecuceanu led from the outset and was always a comfortable distance ahead of the rest of the field. He crossed the line in 1:45.00, taking almost half a second off the Italian indoor record that had stood since 1993.

Further behind, Attaoui overtook Ben in the final stages to justify his selection for the World Indoors, crossing the line in 1:45.67. Ben was rewarded with a PB of 1:45.72.

Another Italian record fell later in the evening with Lorenzo Ndele Simonelli speeding to a 7.46 victory in the 60m hurdles. His clean run in lane seven earned him victory over Spanish duo Asier Martinez (7.50) and Enrique Llopis (7.51).

Meeting records also fell on the infield, courtesy of Rajindra Campbell in the shot put and Jordan Alejandro Diaz in the triple jump.

Rajindra Campbell saved his best for last to win the men’s shot put. Two-time world indoor champion Tom Walsh took an early lead with his opening 21.44m heave. Campbell briefly moved into pole position with a 21.75m throw in round three, but Walsh responded with 21.80m and then set a meeting record of 21.95m in round four.

Rajindra Campbell, winner of the shot put in Madrid

Rajindra Campbell, winner of the shot put in Madrid (© Sportmedia)

Both men fouled in the fifth round, but then Campbell – competing in the city where he set an outdoor Jamaican record of 22.22m last year – stepped into the circle for his final throw and launched his shot out to 22.16m, taking the lead as well as the meeting record. It was also a Jamaican indoor record and moves Campbell to 12th on the world indoor all-time list.

Walsh improved to a season’s best of 22.02m with the final throw of the competition. It may not have been enough for individual victory, but he earned just enough points in the World Indoor Tour to win the series title.

In the men’s triple jump, Diaz – who will be eligible to represent Spain in international competitions from 28 June this year – took the lead in round two with 16.94m. He then bounded out to a season’s best of 17.52m to add 17cm to the meeting record.

That remained the only 17-metre jump of the competition, but Diaz came close to the barrier in round five with 16.99m. Germany’s Max Hess was second with 16.96m.

Romania’s Andrea Miklos was also rewarded with a meeting record with her 51.11 victory in the 400m. She won comfortably from Ireland’s Sharlene Mawdsley (51.97).

World 1500m bronze medallist Narve Gilje Nordas got the better of a competitive field to win the men’s 3000m. He controlled the pace in the latter stages and held off the challenge of rising Ethiopian Ermais Girma to win in a PB of 7:41.28. Girma was second (7:41.94) and Hugo Hay third (7:43.37).

Elsewhere in the middle distances, Ludovica Cavalli capitalised on Birke Haylom’s late withdrawal to win the women’s 1500m in a PB of 4:07.01 from Ethiopian youngster Saron Berhe (4:08.22). The country order was reversed in the women’s 800m where Ethiopia’s Worknesh Mesele won from Italy’s Eloisa Coiro, 2:01.01 to 2:01.50.

In the men’s pole vault, Piotr Lisek found that 5.70m was enough to win not just in Madrid tonight but also in the World Indoor Tour as a whole.

Florentina Costina Iusco won a close contest in the women’s long jump, leaping 6.65m to win by one centimetre. Serbia’s Milica Gardasevic was second, but her runner-up place gave her enough points to win the overall title in the World Indoor Tour.

The women’s high jump was even closer with three women jumping 1.89m. Slovenia’s Lia Apostolovski won on countback from Ella Junnila and Airine Palsyte.

Jon Mulkeen for World Athletics

Miss any of the action? Rewatch the World Indoor Tour Gold Madrid 2024 on demand on Inside Track. Geo-restrictions may apply.

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