Discus ace Christoph Harting beats brother Robert, hurdles sprinter Pamela Dutkiewicz speeds away from everyone, and javelin high-flyer Andreas Hofmann snatches his first title: The champions from Nuremberg have really whetted the appetite for the athletics home game in Berlin.
Two weeks before the European Championships (6. up to 12. August) the aces come in European Championship form, wind and weather prevented further top performances at the national title competitions in the Max-Morlock-Stadion. The German Athletics Association (DLV) will send a record-breaking team with a number of medal candidates to the season highlight in Berlin.
To the team with "clearly over 120 athletes" will also include the Olympic champions from the Harting sports family. Christoph picked up his second championship title with 66.98 meters, and the nomination by the DLV on Monday should only be a formality for old champion Robert, too.
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The 33-year-old was only third in Nuremberg with 63.72 meters and was not satisfied with it. "I am actually better, I can do more!", says the three-time world champion. But everything now speaks in favor of the Berlin crowd favorite.
"Robert Harting would be a wonderful ambassador for these European Championships", said DLV President Jurgen Kessing. The EM team will be announced next Wednesday.
In addition to Christoph Harting and Dutkiewicz, the medal candidates for the season highlight also include top sprinter Gina Luckenkemper, steeplechaser Gesa Felicitas Krause, long jumper Malaika Mihambo, the two shot put champions Christina Schwanitz and David Storl, as well as the fabulous German javelin trio.
After a 47-day forced break due to a persistent injury, javelin throw ace Johannes Vetter has made an impressive comeback – but the world champion from Offenburg was unable to defend his title. Andreas Hofmann became German champion for the first time. The 26-year-old from Mannheim won the high-class competition with 89.55 meters and then cheered proudly and happily: "Mega, very cool, the stadium made a real atmosphere."
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Olympic champion Thomas Rohler from Jena showed strong nerves and secured second place with his last attempt of 88.09 meters. Vetter finished third with 87.83 meters and now travels to the European Championships with his long-time rivals Rohler and Hofmann.
Despite headwinds of 0.7 m/sec. Dutkiewicz ran over 100 meter hurdles in 12.69 seconds to the championship record. Serial champion Julian Reus from Erfurt had to accept a surprising defeat. The German 100-meter record holder finished second in 10.32 seconds behind Kevin Kranz of the Wetzlar sprint team (10.28).
Luckenkemper, on the other hand, defended her title in 11.15 seconds. "I am as constant as never before in my career", said the 21-year-old from Leverkusen. Pole vaulter Bo Kanda Lita Baehre became champion in the absence of Raphael Holzdeppe as in the previous year – at the age of 19 he will now experience his first major European Championships.
Christina Schwanitz picked up her sixth title on Friday evening in front of the picturesque backdrop of Nuremberg’s main market square. 20.06 meters is a world-class performance and a challenge for the European Championships: In Berlin, the cheerful athlete from Saxony wants to make his gold hat trick perfect. The 32-year-old was lucky in a traffic accident on Saturday.