Express Post! Five sporty postcards for Munich
During the past week top athletes have proved with great achievements that they are in top form for the coming highlight of the season; the European Championships in Munich ( 6-11 August) . Five "postcards" with sporty greetings and outstanding "record tidings" were sent from four different places to the capital city of Bavaria.
The same goes for two other European athletes who snatched the headlines at the Golden-League meeting in Monaco. The Rumanian, Gabriela Szabo, took the European record title with 8:21.42 minutes in the 3,000 metre run, as did the Dutchman Simon Vroemen who shattered the African dominance in the 3,000 metre hurdles and celebrated a third place with a great 8:06.91 minute performance. Gabriela Szabo has seemingly not yet had her final word, she states "I am feeling really good and am ready for the competition" The European Championships is looking forward to greeting the petit blonde.
Carolina Kluft sent message from Jamaica
The farthest travelled "postcard was sent from Jamaica by the 19 year old Swede Carolina Kluft. In the Junior World Championships in Kingston she broke the 19 year-old junior world record and climbed to 6,470 points by giving four personal best performances during the course of her fantastic heptathlon and, astoundingly, took the lead in the list of the world's best athletes of the year. If Carolina Kluft recovers in time for the European Championships, the Scandanavian will no longer be the hunter, but rather the hunted! Taking third place in the European Indoor Championship in Vienna Carolina is no longer considered an outsider.
A fifth, no less remarkable top performance was delivered by indoor champion Jolanda Ceplak at the meeting in Heusden. The Slowenian raced in the 800 metres to a finishing time of 1:55.19 minutes. No female athlete has topped this time since the summer of 1997. It is interesting to note that this time put her in seventh place in the ranking of all-time bests together with world champion and Olympic winner Maria Mutola who stopped the clocks in 1994. One thing counts for the European champion above all "I wanted to top up my self-confidence with a win before the European Championships" She has undoubtedly fulfilled her ambition impressively.
Svetlana Feofanova, Gabriela Szabo, Simon Vroeman, Carolina Kluft and Jolanda Ceplak. Five names to note in bold print if you want to know who will be standing on the winner's tribune at the European Championships in Munich!