First gold medal after 27 years

Along with Zane Weir, who won the first gold medal of his career, Pedro Picardo and Auriol Dongma were the shining other names of the first day.

Zane Weir fended off the defending champion Tomas Stanek with a dashing 22.06 and won the first European title of his career. The Italian improved the national record twice, which had already been broken by him during the World Indoors in Belgrade last year, by throwing 21.89 in his second attempt and extending it to 22.06 in the third. The winning throw was also recorded as the European lead of the season. South African-born Italian shot putter won the same title as his coach Paolo Dal Soglio, 27 years after he became the Euro Indoors gold-medallist in Stockholm. Tomas Stanek threw his season best in his second attempt with 21.90 and became the silver-medallist. Roman Kokoshko, who broke the Ukrainian national record in his last attempt with 21.84, won bronze.

Pedro Pichardo, the clear favourite to win the men’s triple jump title in Istanbul, set a world leading mark of 17.60 while also defending his gold medal. While no other athlete leapt beyond the 17-meter line, Nikolaos Andrikopoulos brought the first ever men’s triple jump medal to home in Greece by jumping to 16.58. Max Hess fell a centimeter short of Andrikopoulos with 16.57 and won his fourth European Athletics Indoor Championships bronze medal in a row.

Auriol Dongma brought Portugal its second gold medal during the night session of European Athletics Indoor Championships. In women’s shot put, the 32-year-old world indoor champion defended her title from two years ago in Torun with a Europe leading mark of 19.76. The biggest surprise of the final was Sara Gambetta, who won silver medal by throwing to 18.83 meters, which is also her season best. 27-year-old Fanny Roos, who brought Sweden its first European Indoor medal two years ago by winning silver, hopped on to the third step of the podium with a throw of 18.42 meters. Jessica Schilder, who was the most in-form athlete of the season and the only athlete to exceed 19 metres during qualifications, came in fifth. Dutchwoman’s best throw was 18.33 meters.