Konstanze Klosterhalfen placed second behind Hanna Klein at the European Championships

Konstanze Klosterhalfen placed second behind Hanna Klein at the European Championships

Gold and silver – the first German double success at an indoor European Championships over 3000 meters made Hanna Klein look forward to the highlight of the year. “I hope that I’m well prepared for the summer and that I can continue with this calmness and self-confidence,” said the surprise European champion Klein. The 29-year-old track and field athlete from Tübingen prevailed with an irresistible final round against the favorite Konstanze Klosterhalfen.

The German record holder struggled with second place. “I showed a good race and will take that with me as motivation for the outdoor season,” Klosterhalfen told ARD. “It’s a step towards the outdoor season and that’s when it counts.” Klein ran “the perfect race”. The high point of the year is the Outdoor World Championships in Budapest in August. After last year’s disappointment at the World Cup in the USA and the exhilarating summer fairy tale at the European Championships in Munich, the title fights in Hungary a year before the Olympics in Paris are an important benchmark for the association.

Klein enjoyed the national anthem in the hall but only once on Friday evening in Istanbul did she grab her first big win. In addition, there had never been a German double success in this discipline – neither with the victory of Brigitte Kraus in 1984 or that of Ines Bibernell-Obst two years later. While Klein was now celebrating as the winner after EM bronze over 1500 meters in the hall from 2021, Klosterhalfen recorded EM silver in the hall for the third time. “I think we’re on the right track,” said Klosterhalfen, who didn’t really like silver.

Dissatisfied: Konstanze Klosterhalfen after the 3000 meter run

Image: Reuters

That was different for shot putter Sara Gambetta after her surprising second place. “I always missed a medal like that. That’s really pushing me now,” said the 30-year-old from SV Halle/Saale. “I’m looking forward to the summer.” That also applied to triple jumper Max Hess after triple jump bronze. “I’ll take my speed with me and can start the summer positively,” said the 26-year-old from Chemnitz.

Long jump Olympic champion Malaika Mihambo meanwhile confidently qualified for the final this Sunday (5:50 p.m. CET). The two-time world champion from the LG Kurpfalz increased her personal best performance of the year of 6.87 meters in the third attempt and finished the qualification in second place. On the other hand, the second German starter, Mikaelle Assani from Karlsruhe, who was 13th with 6.38 meters and missed the progress by three centimeters, was eliminated.

In the fight for her first gold at an indoor European Championship, Malaika Mihambo will probably have to face another duel with a well-known rival. The best of the qualifications was Serbian Ivana Vuleta (née Spanovic). Mihambo snatched this from under his nose with 7.06 meters of gold at the open-air European Championships 2022 in Munich. Mihambo was second with 7.03.

“I don’t have an international title under the roof of the hall yet, I would like to get it,” said 29-year-old Mihambo before starting in the Turkish metropolis: “It won’t be easy, but I’m looking forward to it.”


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