Malaika Mihambo danced around a bit, relaxed every now and then drew on her lipstick, flirted with the camera – and gave the competition no chance. The appearance of the long jump world champion made for a bit of glamor at an otherwise rather sad event. The Golden Girl jumped at the ghost championship of track and field athletes from a short run, but a set of 6.71 m was enough for Mihambo to easily take her fourth national title. “I’m super satisfied with the 6.71 meters,” said Mihambo: “With the wind, it wasn’t easy to find a proper approach.”
Mihambo, Germany’s Sportswoman of the Year, was the top star of these special title fights, in which no athlete could really ignite. On Sunday, in addition to Mihambo, who took only 16 instead of the usual 20 steps and thus could not build up enough speed for the really big distances, only javelin thrower Johannes Vetter internationally higher demands were sufficient. The former world champion from Offenburg threw at least 87.36 meters.
And also World Cup fourth Bo Kanda Lita Baehre, who increased his best performance in the pole vault to 5.75 m, or sprint youngster Deniz Almas, who carelessly ran over 100 m to the title in 10.09 seconds, showed appealing performances. But the big spectacle was canceled – almost naturally without a spectator. And one year before the Olympics it is clear: the German athletes still have to make significant gains.
These strange title fights in the embers of Braunschweig, which had to take place without fans due to the corona crisis, were not necessarily performance-enhancing either. The greatest success of the weekend was probably that this “mini-Tokyo” was allowed to take place thanks to an extensive hygiene concept.
But there was no such thing as atmosphere on Hamburger Strasse. The constant playing of scraps of music through the loudspeakers seemed like a somewhat desperate attempt to create a bit of atmosphere. “Without a spectator, of course, the last kick is missing,” said the former European triple jump champion Max Hess.
And then there were also some top-class players who usually make for strong performances. Former world champion David Storl only pushed his ball a moderate 20.17 meters. Obstacle star Gesa Felicitas Krause had to give up her race completely exhausted after 2000 of 3000 meters. Pamela Dutkiewicz didn’t get over the hurdles at all either. The runner-up European champion stumbled on the third from last obstacle when she started the season and was eliminated in the semi-finals. The discus of Olympic third Daniel Jasinski landed at 61.68 meters.
After the postponement of the Olympics, some other prominent names did not go to Braunschweig at all: Middle-distance ace Konstanze Klosterhalfen, Olympic javelin champion Thomas Röhler or sprinter Gina Lückenkemper were not there for various reasons, as were decathlon world champion Niklas Kaul and Christoph Harting, Olympic discus champion from Rio.
Mihambo, who wants to train with athletics legend Carl Lewis in the United States in the future, will only complete a few competitions this year. She will probably only compete in the long jump at the ISTAF in Berlin (September 13th), the focus of the European champion is entirely on the Olympics next year.
There Mihambo wants to fight for gold again in an empty stadium if necessary. “For us athletes, it is important that we present ourselves and can measure ourselves against each other. So I just hope the Olympics take place. If it should be ghost games, then just like that ”, she had told the sports information service in advance of the DM:“ I think the viewers would also be happy if they could see it on TV. ”