The biggest and most important track and field meet this week is the European Athletics Championships in Munich. The event starts on Monday, August 15, and will run through Sunday, August 21. A number of the athletics biggest stars will line up at the Munich Olympic Stadium.
Marcell Jacobs (100 metres):
Italian 100m star Marcell Jacobs will line-up in the 100 metres in the Munich Olympic Stadium with the goal to add the European gold medal to his collection of medals, which features the Olympic gold medals in the 100 metres and the 4x100 metres, the European Indoor gold medal in Torun 2021 and the World Indoor gold medal in the 60 metres in Belgrade 2022.
Jacobs started his outdor season with a win in Savona in a wind-assisted 9.99 but he suffered from a muscle injury, which forced him to pull out of many Diamond League races. He clocked 10.04 in the heats of the World Championships in Eugene but he pulled out of the semifinal due to an injury problem. He is now back in his best form after one month of preparation under the guidance of his coach Paolo Camossi, who is optimistic about the chances of Jacobs for the 100 metres race, which is scheduled on Tuesday 16 August.
Paolo Camossi: “Marcell is running free, he is having fun, the workouts are promising. If we are in Munich it is because he is fine and can compete. Marcell is the Olympic gold medallist and he is here to win, but it is not a race to be taken lightly”.
One of the major rivals for the gold medal is Zharnel Hughes from Great Britain, who will defend the European 100 metres he won in Berlin in 2018 in a championship record of 9.95.
Hughes is the second fastest sprinter in Europe this season with 9.97. The British sprinter won the 200 metres at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham behind Jereem Richards and helped England win the gold medal in the 4x100 relay.
Another British medal contender is Reece Prescod, who finished second to Hughes in the 100 metres in Berlin four years ago. Prescod clocked a seasonal best of 9.93 at the Golden Spike in Ostrava.
Meba Mickael Zeze from France is third in the European seasonal list with his PB of 19.97 set in La Chaux de Fonds. Jimmy Vicaut from France set his seasonal best of 10.10 in Savona last May and held the previous European record of 9.86 until last year, when Jacobs clocked 9.84 in the Olympic semifinal in Tokyo before winning the Olympic gold medal in 9.80.
Zharnel Hughes (200 metres):
Zharnel Hughes will be aiming to add a European gold to his recent Commonwealth Games silver in Birmingham. He will face Nethaneel Mitchell Blake, who won the European silver medal in Berlin 2018 and the world gold medal in the 4x100 on home soil.
Filippo Tortu improved his PB by 0.01 to 20.10 in the semifinal of the World Championships in Eugene and narrowly missed a spot in the final. Tortu is aiming to win an individual 200m medal and become the second Italian sprinter in history to break the 20 seconds barrier. The former Italian 100 record holder anchored the Italian 4x100 relay to a historic 4x100 Olympic gold medal in Tokyo in an Italian record of 37.50. The Italian 4x100 relay team is looking to add a European gold medal to the Olympic title, although they will face a strong opposition from Great Britain, who won the European title in Berlin 2018 and world silver medal in Eugene. The other teams who can fight for the podium are Germany, Turkey and France.
Ramil Gulyev from Turkey won the European 200 metres title in Berlin 2018 in 19.76 missing Pietro Mennea’s long-standing European record by just 0.04. This year the Turkish sprinter won the gold medal at the Mediterrenean Games in Oran in 20.21.
The new name to watch is 18-year-old Blessing Afrifah from Israel, who won the world under 20 gold medal beating world under 20 100m champion and record holder Letsile Tebogo with the same time of 19.96 in a very close finish.
Afrifah was born in Tel Aviv and raised in Israel to parents from Ghana. His father came to Israel as an employee of the Ghanaian consulate.
Men’s 400 metres:
Matthew Hudson Smith from Great Britain will defend his European 400 metres title won in Berlin four years ago. Hudson Smith took 0.01 off the British record held by Iwan Thomas at the Prefontaine Classic in Eugene with 44.35.
Hudson Smith won the world bronze medal in Eugene in 44.38 after coming close to the European record again in the semifinal with 44.38. The British 400m sprinter went on to win the silver medal at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham n home soil in 44.81. He could equal his compatriot Martyn Rooney, who won two consecutive European gold medals in 2014 and 2016.
The second fastest entrant is Alex Haydck Wilson, who clocked 45.08 in the semifinal at the World Championships in Eugene,
The other major contenders for a medal are Belgian brothers Kevin and Dylan Borlée. Kevin won the European gold medal in Barcelona 2010 and is still in good form at the age of 34. Borlée, who holds a PB of 44.56, set a seasonal best of 45.12 in Bern last June and clocked 45.25 in the semifinals of the World Championships in Eugene. Dylan improved his PB to 45.18 this year. The Borlée brothers won the world bronze medal in the 4x400 relay in Eugene and will chase their third consecutive European gold medal. The strongest rivals to Belgium are the Netherlands, who won the gold medal at the European Indoor gold medal and the Olympic silver in Tokyo, Great Britain and Czech Republic.
Liemarvin Bonevacia from the Netherlands will be seeking his second European medal after claiming bronze medal on home soil in Amsterdam 2016.
Karsten Warholm (400 metres hurdles):
Karsten Warholm will be seeking his second consecutive European gold medal in the men’s 400 metres hurdles. Four years ago the Norwegian star won the final in 47.64. He has completed his collection of major gold medals with two world titles in London 2017 and Doha 2019 and the Olympic title in Tokyo 2021 with a world record of 45.94.
This year Warholm suffered a harmstring injury in his first race of the year in Rabat and was sidelined for a month. He arrived in Eugene short of form, but he tried to match Alison Dos Santos in the first 300 metres in the world final, but he faded to seventh in the final straight.
Karsten Warholm: “I have been able to train without worry since the World Championships. Before the World Champinships It was a race against time to be ready. It was very stressful. Now I was able to prepare myself more calmly, and it’s a very good feeling”
Warholm will face a very tough challenge from Wilfried Happio, who finished fourth at the World Championships in Eugene in 47.41 missing Stephane Diagana’s French record by 0.04.
Pascal Marinot Lagarde (110 metres hurdles):
Reigning European champion Pascal Martinot Lagarde will defend the title he won in Berlin four years ago. Martinot Lagarde won the world indoor bronze medal in Belgrade 2022, the world bronze medal in Doha 2019.
Martinot Lagarde will face his younger compatriot Sasha Zhoya, who won two gold medals at the European Under 20 in Tallin and the World under 20 Championships in Nairobi breaking the world under 20 record with 12.72. Zhoya won the French title in Caen in a European leading time of 13.17 and came close to his PB with the senior hurdles with 13.21 in the Monaco Diamond League meeting on 10 August.
Zhoya shares the top position in the European seasonal list with European Under 23 champion Aslar Martinez from Spain, who won the bronze medal at the World Championships in Eugene with 13.17.
Armand Duplantis (men’s pole vault):
Armand Duplantis is aiming to win his second consecutive European outdoor gold medal in the men’s pole vault four years after his win with a championship record and a world under 20 record of 6.05m at the previous edition held at the Berlin Olympic Stadium. In the German capital Duplantis became the youngest member of the 6 metres club.
Duplantis has won every major title, claiming gold medals at the Olympic Games in Tokyo 2021, at the European Indoor Championships in Torun 2021, at the World Outdoor Championships in Eugene 2022 and at the the World Indoor Championships in Belgrade 2022. This year he broke two world records at 6.20m at the World Indoor Championships in Belgrade and 6.21m at the World Outdoor Championships in Eugene.
Duplantis cleared the 6.00 metres barrier 49 times in his career, when he cleared 6.21 in Eugene. The Swede added two more clearances last Saturday over this magic barrier at Diamond League meeting in Chorzow, where he won with 6.10m. He edged ahead of Ukrainian legend Sergey Bubka, who cleared the 6 metres barrier 46 times in his career.
Duplantis has remained unbeaten in his 18 indoor and outdoor competitions in 2022 and has achieved the best five clearances in the world this year (6.21m in Eugene, 6.16m in Stockolm, 6.10m in Chorzow, 6.02m in Oslo, 6.01m in Hengelo).
Duplantis will go head-to-head against his friend Renaud Lavillenie, who shared fifth place with Oleg Zernikel with 5.87m at the World Championships in Eugene. Lavillenie won three European outdoor gold medals in Barcelona 2010 with 5.85m, in Helsinki 2012 with 5.97m and in Zurich 2014 with 5.90m.
Zernikel also placed fourth at the European Indoor Championships in Torun with 5.70m. He will be joined In the German team by his compatriot Bo Kanda Lita Baehre, who won the European Under 23 gold medal and reached two top-eight places at the World Championships finishing fourth in Doha 2019 with 5.70m and seventh in Eugene 2022 with 5.87m.
Five European pole vaulters reached the World Championships final in Eugene and will compete in Munich: Pal Lillefosse, Norwegian record holder with 5.85m, Sondre Guttormsen, NCAA outdoor champion with 5.75m and second at the Bislett Games with 5.80m, Ben Broeders from Belgium, winner in the Paris Diamond League meeting with 5.80m ahead of Lavillenie, Ersu Sasma from Turkey, eighth at the World Championships in Eugene with 5.80m, and Dutchman Menno Vloon, who broke the National indoor record of 5.96m in Aubiére last year.
Piotr Lisek will have the chance to bounce back from the disappointment at the World Championships in Eugene, where he did not get through to the final. Lisek won five world indoor and outdoor medals and finished in the top six in 14 consecutive major championships between 2014 and 2021.
Gianmarco Tamberi and Andiy Protsenko (high jump):
Olympic champion Gianmarco Tamberi will chase his second European outdoor medal six years after his triumph in Amsterdam 2016. The Italian 30-year-old high jump star also won two European Indoor medals (gold in Glasgow 2019 and silver in Torun 2021) and finished fourth at the European Outdoor Championships in Berlin 2018.
Tamberi finished fourth at the World Championships setting his seasonal best of 2.33m, but he had to settle with fourth place behind Ukraine’s Andiy Protsenko on countback. Tamberi suffered from a bout of covid after the World Championships in Eugene and returned to competitions in Szekesfehrvar, where he took the win with 2.24m.
Protsenko won the European outdoor silver medal in Zurich 2014 and finished fourth at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro 2016.
The entry list also features two more winners of the European Championships: German Mateusz Przybylko, winner in Berlin 2018 with 2.35m, and Bogdan Bondarenko, gold medallist in Zurich in 2014.
The other major contenders are 19-year-old Yonathan Kapitolnik, who won European and World Under 20 titles last year and 2013 European Under 20 champion Tobias Potye, who cleared 2.30m at the German Championships in Berlin.
Miltiadis Tentoglou (men’s long jump):
Olympic champion Miltiadis Tentoglou will have the chance to become the fourth long jumper to successfully defend the European outdoor title following in the footsteps of Wilhelm Leichum (1934 and 1938), Igor Ter Ovansesian (three-time winner in 1958, 1962 and 1969) and Greg Rutherford (2014 and 2016).
Tentoglou won the world indoor title in Belgrade with 8.55m and leads the entry list with 8.36m.
The Greek athlete will renew his rivalry with Thobias Montler, who won the world indoor silver medal in Belgrade with a national record of 8.38m. Montler finished runner-up to Tentoglou at both editions of the European Indoor Championships in Glasgow 2019 and Torun 2021.
The other major contenders are Eusebio Caceres, fourth at the Olympic Games in Tokyo 2021, and Hector Santos, European Under 23 silver medallist behind Tentoglou in 2019, Jules Pommery from France and Radek Juska from Czech Republic.
Pedro Pablo Pichardo (men’s triple jump):
Pedro Pablo Pichardo from Portugal will aim to complete his “Grand Slam” of major titles after winning the Olympic gold medal in Tokyo 2021 with 17.98m and the world title in Eugene 2022 with 17.95m. Pichardo also won the European Indoor gold medal in Torun 2021 and two world silver medals in Moscow 2013 and Beijing 2015. He jumped over the 18 metres barrier twice in his career with 18.06m in Doha and 18.08m in L’Avana in 2015.
Italian triple jumpers Andrea Dallavalle and Emmanuel Ihemeje finished fourth and fifth respectively in the World Championships in Eugene. Dallavalle missed the podium by six centimetres with 17.25m and won the Italian Championships in Rieti with 17.28m.
Ihemeje, a student at the University of Oregon, won the NCAA Indoor and outdoor titles in 2021 for the Oregon Ducks and jumped a wind-assisted 17.17m in the World Championships final.
The other contenders for a spot in the final are Frenchman Benjamin Compaoré, who holds a PB of 17.48m and a seasonal best of 17.07m, and Dimitrios Tsiamis, European bronze medallist in Berlin 2018.
Men’s discus throw:
Krjistian Ceh from Slovenia won his first world gold medal in Eugene with a championship record with 71.13m. Ceh will seek his first European Senior gold medal after winning two European Under 23 gold medals. The Agricultural student at the University of Maribor has moved his training base to Estonia, where he is coached by 2008 Olympic champion Gerd Kanter, who won the European silver medal in Goteborg in 2006. Ceh threw over the 70 metres in Birmingham (71.27m), Rome (70.72m), Stockolm (70.02m), Eugene (71.13m) and Szekesfehrvar (71.2m).
Daniel Stahl is aiming to complete a full set of international medals after winning the world title in Doha 2019 and the Olympic gold medal in Tokyo 2021. The Swede set a seasonal best of 71.47m and beat Ceh in Turku with 70.62m.
The Lithuanian team is formed by Mykolas Alekna and Andrius Gudzius. Alekna, won the world silver medal with 69.27m in Eugene and is aiming to equal his father Virgilius, who claimed the European gold medal in Goteborg 2006. Gudzius won the World Championships bronze in Eugene four years after claiming the world gold medal in London 2017. Gudzius is aiming to become the third back to back winner at the European Championships after Adolfo Consolini and Robert Harting.
The field features Simon Petterson from Sweden and Lukas Weisshaideinger from Austria, who won silver and bronze medals at the Olympic Games in Tokyo, and Lawrence Okoye from Great Britain, who won the silver medal at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.
Pawel Fajdek and Wojciech Nowicki (hammer throw):
Wojciech Nowicki will defend his European title won in Berlin 2018. The Polish athlete will renew his rivalry with compatriot Pawel Fajdek, won won the fifth world title of his career in Eugene with 81.98m. Nowicki won the Olympic gold medal beating Elvin Henriksen from Norway and Fajdek.
Fajdek leads 90-26 in his head-to-head clashes against Nowicki, who won five of their nine competitions this year. Nowicki beat Fajdek in two Continental Tour competitions in Chorzow with 81.58m and Szekesfehrvar with 79.96m.
The line-up als features Elvind Henriksen, who won the Olympic silver in Tokyo with 81.58m and the world bronze medal in Tokyo with 80.87m, Quentin Bigt frm France and Bence Halasz from Hungary, who finished fourth with 80.24m and fifth with 80.15m at the Olympic Games in Tokyo.
Men’s javelin throw:
Julian Weber will aim to win the European gold medal in front of his home fans. Weber finished fourth at the World Championships in Eugene with 86.86m.
Jakub Vadlejch from Czech Republic won the world bronze medal in Eugene, the Olympic silver medal and leads the European list with his PB of 90.88m set in Doha last year.
The Finnish hopes are carried by Lassi Etteletalo and Oliver Helander, who finished sixth and eighth at the World Championships in Eugene.
The line-up also features 39-year-old Olympic bronze medallist Vitezslav Vesely and fresh world under 20 champion Artur Felfner from the Ukraine, who won the world under 20 gold medal in Cali and improved his PB to 84.32m this year.
Men’s shot put:
Three European shot putters, who reached the World Championships final in Eugene are the top favourites for the European Championships in Munich: Filip Mihaljevic from Croatia (sixth with 21.82m), Italy’s Nick Ponzio (ninth with 20.81m) and Marcus Thomsen from Norway (tenth with 20.66m).
The other major contenders are Tomas Stanek, who set the European seasonal best performance with 21.94m in Schifflange and finished third in Szekesfehrvar with 21.66m, Michal Haratyk and Konrad Bukowiecki, who won European gold and silver medals in Berlin in 2018 respectively.
Kevin Mayer against Nicklas Kaul (decathlon):
Kevin Mayer is aiming to win his second major title of the season in the men’s decathlon at the European Championships in Munich one month after the world gold medal in Eugene.
Mayer will be looking to bounce back from the disappointment from the European Championships in Berlin in 2018, when he made three fouls in the long jump.
The Frenchman won the world gold medal in Eugene last month with 8816 points, setting his highest score since his world record of 9216 points in Talence in 2018. Mayer leads the European seasonal list by almost 400 points.
Swiss decathlete Simon Ehammer will take place in his third decathlon competition of the season one month after winning the world bronze medal in Eugene. Ehammer won the World Athetics Combined Events Tour meeting in Ratingen with 8354 points and placed third at the Hypo Meeting in Goetzis improving his national record to 8377 points. At these two meetings he set two world all-time best perfomances in the long jump with 8.30m in Ratingen and 8.45m in Goetzis.
German decathlete Nicklas Kaul, who won the world gold medal in Doha 2019 with a PB of 8691 points, will carry the biggest medal hopes for the home team. Kaul placed sixth at the World Championships in Eugene with 8434 points and was the second best European finisher behind Mayer.
Arthur Abele from Germany won the European decathlon gold medal in Berlin and will defend his title in another major championship on home soil.
The German team will also feature decathlon veteran Kai Kazmirek, who won the world bronze medal in London 2017 with 8488 points and finished fourth at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro 2016 with 8580 points, and rising star Leo Neugebauer, who finished second at the NCAA Championships in Eugene improving his PB to 8362 points.
Jakob Ingebrigtsen (1500 metres):
Jakob Ingebrigtsen will defend the 1500m and 5000m European titles he won at the Olympic Stadium in Berlin 2018. Ingebrigtsen won the Olympic gold medal in Tokyo in a European record of 3:28.32. At the World Championships he won the silver medal in Eugene in 3:29.47 behind Jake Wightman, who will run the 800 metres in Munich. Last winter Ingebrigtsen broke the world indoor record clocking 3:30.60 in Liévin and won the world indoor silver medal behind Samuel Tefera in Belgrade.
Ingebrigtsen will face Mario Garcia from Spain, who finished fourth in the 1500m final in Eugene setting the second fastest European time with 3:30.20.
The British team is formed by Jake Heyward (3:31.08), Matt Stonier (3:32.50) and Neil Gourley (3:32.93).
Jakob Ingebrigtsen (5000 metres):
Ingebrigtsen set the European 5000m record with 12:48.45 at the Golden Gala meeting in Florence last year. He set the fastest time in Europe this year clocking 13:02.03 in San Juan Capistrano (California).
Ingebrigtsen will renew his rivalry against Mohamed Katir from Spain, who won the world bronze medal in the 1500 metres in Eugene. The Spanish athlete set a national record of 12:50.79 in Florence behind Ingebrigtsen. This year he won the Spanish Championships over the distance in 13:43.61 last June.
Another Spanish medal contender is Adel Mechaal, who finished fifth in the 1500 metres at the Olympic Games in Tokyo and improved his PB to 13:06.02 in the 5000 metres this year. Mechaal won the European Indoor gold medal in the 3000m in Belgrade 2017 and the silver medal in the 5000m in Amsterdam 2016.
The best German hope in this race is Mohamed Mohumed, who is second in the entry list to Ingebrigtsen with 13:03.18.
Yeman Crippa (10000 metres):
Italy’s Yeman Crippa leads the entry list with his seasonal best of 27:16.18 set in London last May. Crippa, who is entered in both the 5000m and the 10000m, won two European bronze medals in the 10000m in Berlin in 2018 and at the European Cross Country Championships in 2019. The Italian athlete of Ethiopian origin set a seasonal best of 13:04.95 in the 5000 metres at the Golden Gala in Rome last June. Crippa finished eighth in the 10000m at the World Championships in Doha 2019.
The French hopes are carried by Jimmy Gressier, who set the second fastest time in Europe this year with 27:24.51 at the European 10000m Cup on home soil in Pacé last May. Gressier also finished fourth in 13:08.75 in the Paris Diamond League meeting last June. The Frenchman won two European gold medals in the 5000m and 10000m in Gavle 2019.
Ahmed Abdelwahed (3000 metres steeplechase):
The two fastest entrants are Italian middle distance runners Ahmed Abdelwahed and Osama Zoghlami, who finished sixth and seventh at the Golden Gala in Rome clocking 8:10.29 and 8:11.00 respectively.
The Italian steeplechasers will face Frenchman Djilal Bedrani, who finished fourth at the European Championships in Berlin 2018 and fifth at the World Championships in Doha 2019 in his PB of 8:05.23.