Tag Archives: Елена Гаджиевна Исинбаева

Istanbul 2012: Top Seven Performances

Amongst the major international athletics championships, the World Indoors is the most underrated. Big name stars like Usain Bolt usually opt out of the biennial meet, especially in crucial Olympic years. Indoor athletics has a far smaller reach than its outdoor counterpart, with the smaller venues usually found in the frigid countries of the northern hemisphere.

Photo from Wikipedia

Nevertheless, it has that obscure charm. When I first saw the start lists of some events, I thought that the rest of the non-European, non-American world was underrepresented. I thought wrong. As soon as the 60m dash heats came out, a cacophony of athletes from small countries – from Mongolia in the Gobi desert to Fiji in the Pacific – competed amongst their more illustrious counterparts.

Even if I had to rely on live streaming links and my less-than-perfect internet connection to watch the World Indoors, I must say that I had a grand time. Despite the absence of most of the track & field titans, the festivities were certainly not devoid of memorable athletics moments. The three-day event has seen former World Indoor champions like Elena Isinbayeva Елена Гаджиевна Исинбаева, Justin Gatlin, and Valerie Adams re-emerge on the big stage, whilst playing host to bevy of promising talent.

One Gold, Three Silvers (Photo from Zimbio/Getty Images)

The women high jumpers deserve special mention too, as the troika of Antonietta Di Martino, Anna Chicherova Анна Владимировна Чичерова, and Ebba Jungmark shared a the second spot on the podium, behind the champion, the come-backing Chaunté Lowe (1.98m). The three athletes had equally identical sheets, with each clearing 1.95m.

The United States topped the overall standings with a staggering 18 medals, 10 of which were gold. Great Britain had 9, while African distance powerhouses Ethiopia and Kenya won 5 and 4, respectively.

The following list enumerates my favorite performances from Istanbul (aside from the 60m hurdles, of course!):

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Darya Klishina Дарья Клишина rules Russian Winter Long Jump

Our favorite long jumper, Darya Klishina Дарья Клишина, started the 2011 with a bang. The comely Klishina ruled the recently concluded Russian Winter indoor meeting.

Read Track Beauty of the Week: Darya Klishina

View Darya’s post-competition interview, Yelena Isinbayeva’s comeback vault and Ukhov’s winning jump here

This early, Klishina looks sharp. Her first round effort of 6.82m sealed victory early on. Her subsequent marks were 6.53m, 6.77m and 6.76m. Two of the aforesaid leaps were better than  second-placer Anna Nazarova’s Анна Назарова 6.75m.

Read the EAA article on the Russian Winter competition

Here’s to a successful 2011 season, Darya!

Track Beauty of the Week: Yelena Isinbayeva Елена Гаджиевна Исинбаева

Yelena Isinbayeva Елена Гаджиевна Исинбаева is this week’s track beauty!

Isinbayeva, without a doubt, has revolutionized the young event of women’s pole vaulting. She is a living legend of pole vaulting, in light of her dominance the past few years. Starting out as a gymnast, the Russian switched to pole vaulting when she grew too tall. She won her first major international medal at the 1999 World Youth Championships, clearing 4.10m. A year later, she followed this up with a World Junior title.

Photos from Wikipedia and kabatology

Success eluded the young Isinbayeva at the inaugural pole vault event at the 2000 Sydney Olympics, failing to move out of the qualifying stages. Three years later, Isinbayeva cleared 4.82m, to set her first world record.

All-in-all, Isinbayeva had won 15 outdoor and 12 indoor titles including two Olympic golds. In the last two years, however, chinks in the Russian’s armor have started to show. In 2009, Isinbayeva fouled all her three attempts, months after becoming the first woman to clear 5.00 meters. A year later, the world record holder bombed out of the World Indoor Championships in Doha, prompting her to abruptly cut her 2010 season.

Truly, the stresses of being on the top could break even the most determined competitor’s frame of mind.

Since then, Isinbayeva has been recharging her batteries, taking time out from the sport. She is slated to make a comeback in early 2011.

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