Paula Radcliffe has committed herself to run in both the 10,000m and the marathon in Helsinki, hoping to wipe out her Athens Olympics nightmare. R
ussia’s Yelena Isimbayeva became the first woman to clear 5m in the pole vault and must be favourite for the gold in a week’s time, but Olympic 1,500m and 5,000m champion Hicham el Guerrouj has pulled out of this year’s extravaganza. Also absent will be world 100m record holder Asafa Powell and 200m champion Shawn Crawford – both carry injuries. Javelin king Jan Zelezay is yet to decide on his participation.
In the European Golden League series, Portugal’s Francis Obikwelu was disqualified after two false starts in Stockholm. The 100m sprint was won by Olympic champion Justin Gatlin in a modest time of 10.15 seconds – 0.13 seconds slower than subsequent Oslo victor Aziz Zakari from Ghana. 400m runner Jeremy Wariner was impressive in Stockholm as was 400m hurdler Ladji Doucoure from France in Oslo.
Only two athletes remain in contention for the one million euro jackpot – sprinter Christine Arron and triple jumper Tatyana Lebedeva.