Continental Cup Day 2 — Team Americas Takes The Title From Europe

Shaunae Miller-Uibo won the 200, then finished off the meet with a 50.49 anchor for the victorious Americas team. (© Getty Images for IAAF)

Ostrava, Czech Republic, September 09—The second day of the Continental Cup was dominated by Team Americas, the favorites going from a slim 13-point lead over Europe at the day’s start and finishing with 262 points, as Europe (233), Asia/Pacific (188) and Africa (142) followed.

Team captain Mike Powell bet one of his two “jokers” on the men’s triple, doubling the points available to the Americas team—a gamble that could also have backfired. Instead, Christian Taylor came through with a confident win, hitting 57-8½ (17.59) in round 1, leading the round 4 semi with a safe 53-10¼ (16.41) and closing out with a 57-1½ (17.31).

In the 110 hurdles, Sergey Shubenkov overcame a slow, lumbering start to snatch a 13.03 win over Ronald Levy (13.12) with Pascal Martinot-Lagarde finishing 3rd in 13.31, giving Europe a big 16 points (Shubenkov was the team’s joker).

The women’s steeple raised the question of what happens when not all the athletes seem to have read the memo on the “devil take the hindmost” concept. While WR holder Beatrice Chepkoech ran away from everyone, Ethiopian Weynshet Ansa, a 9:30.03 performer, didn’t stop running when officials tried to yank her. It took a few laps, but order was restored (and Ansa DQed). Chepkoech took the easy win in 9:07.92, while Courtney Frerichs ran 2nd in 9:15.22. Chepkoech explained her strategy, saying, “Yesterday when I saw the elimination run I thought I had to run in front in order not to be in the eliminations. I was tired I must say after the season but I did not want to set a slow pace and then speed up every lap to escape the elimination. I knew what was going on behind me because I was watching it on the screen.”

The men in the 3000 got it right, the whole pack sprinting at the end of each lap to try to avoid being the odd man out and the judges needing to look at finish photos to decide the ejectees. The fartlek spectacle might have ruined the final times for the four finishers, but it made for a fun watch for the fans. Surprisingly, the first man out was Ethiopia’s Birhanu Balew, a 7:34.26 performer who might have had a chance to win a conventional race. Instead, it was a 1-2 for the Americas, Paul Chelimo (7:57.13) handily outsprinting Mo Ahmed of Canada (7:57.99). Said Chelimo, “Today I had to be ready to accelerate at every lap because of the new rules with eliminations. It required me to be in a really great shape here. It was really tough to have only four competitors on the last lap.”

Along the way, fans saw another strong Shaunae Miller-Uibo finish in the 200, her 22.16 tagging Dafne Schippers’ 22.28 and scoring joker points. In the men’s 400, Abdalelah Haroun charged off the last turn for a 44.72 victory over a fading field. Shamier Little ran a fine second half in the 400 hurdles but her 53.86 could not catch Janieve Russell’s finer still 53.62 from lane 1.

Caster Semenya produced the No. 8 two-lap performance ever, 1:54.77. (© Getty Images for IAAF)

One of the most impressive races turned out to be the women’s 800. The day after her South African Record 49.62, all eyes were on Caster Semenya as she ran a terrifically fast first lap of 55.93. With no Francine Niyonsaba in the field, Ajee’ Wilson led Americas teammate Natoya Goule place. In the final 200, the fatigue was evident in Semenya, but she was too far ahead for anyone to dream of challenging her. She won, her 1:54.77 (the No. 8 performance all-time) still far ahead of Wilson’s 1:57.16. Goule crossed the line in 3rd (1:57.36).

Sam Kendricks managed the win over Renaud Lavillenie in the (conventional) vault with his 19-2¼ (5.85) clearance. Thomas Röhler hit 285-8 (87.07) on his final round for a crowd-pleasing javelin win. But perhaps the most stirring field event win of all went to Caterine Ibargüen, who produced a clutch Colombian Record of 22-9 (6.93) in the final round to add the long jump to her TJ win the day before, an unprecedented double in Cup history.

Raven Saunders could only smile and dance when she realized that the longest shot put of the day—her third round 64-9¼ (19.74)—wouldn’t get her the win. She ended up 2nd behind China’s Lijao Gong, who topped her in the all-deciding final round, 63-2 (19.25) to 60-4 (18.39).

In the day’s final event, the mixed 4×4, a looked-for battle between the Americas and Europe fizzled when Europe’s third leg dropped the baton while leading. That made it pretty easy for Stephenie Ann McPherson and Miller-Uibo (50.49) to close out a 3:13.01–3:16.19 win over Africa. Said McPherson, “Today we gained valuable experience of a mixed relay before it appears at next year’s World Championships. Working out how to mix the athletes definitely makes it more challenging.”


CONTINENTAL CUP, DAY 2

Ostrava, Czech Republic, September 08—

Teams (both sexes): 1. Americas 262; 2. Europe 233; 3. Asia/Pacific 188; 4. Africa 142.

Mixed 4 x 400: 1. Americas 3:13.01 (Christian Taylor 46.97, Luguelín Santos 44.96, Stephenie Ann McPherson 50.59, Shaunae Miller-Uibo 50.49); 2. Africa 3:16.19 (Christine Botlogetswe 52.68, Chidi Okezie 46.95, Caster Semenya 49.63, Baboloki Thebe 46.93); 3. Asia/Pacific 3:18.55 (Steve Solomon 47.06, Murray Goodwin 46.61, Anneliese Rubie 52.71, Ella Connolly 52.17);… dq—Europe (Matthew Hudson-Smith 46.48, Kevin Borlée 44.93, Lisanne De Witte (drop), Justyna Święty-Ersetic).

Men’s Results

100(0.0): 1. Noah Lyles (AM) 10.01; 2. Bingtian Su (AP) 10.03; 3 Akani Simbine (AF) 10.11; 4. Jak Ali Harvey (EU) 10.19; 5. Arthur Gue Cissé (AF) 10.23; 6. Barakat Al-Harthi (AP) 10.29; 7. Churandy Martina (EU) 10.36; 8. Yohan Blake (AM) 11.99.

400: 1. Abdalelah Haroun (AP) 44.72; 2. Baboloki Thebe (AF) 45.10; 3. Nathan Strother (AM) 45.28; 4. Matthew Hudson-Smith (EU) 45.72; 5. Y. Muhammed Anas (AP) 45.72; 6. Luguelín Santos (AM) 45.81; 7. Kevin Borlée (EU) 46.26;… dq—Thapelo Phora (AF).

1500: 1. Elijah Manangoi (AF) 3:40.00; 2. Marcin Lewandowsk (EU) 3:40.42; 3. Jakob Ingebrigtsen (EU) 3:40.80; 4. Charles Philibert-Thiboutot (AM) 3:40.90; 5. Ryan Gregson (AP) 3:40.91; 6. Jinson Johnson (AP) 3:41.72; 7. Drew Hunter (AM) 3:43.95; 8. Ronald Musagala (AF) 3:43.95.

3000: 1. Paul Chelimo (AM) 7:57.13; 2. Mo Ahmed (AM) 7:57.99; 3. Henrik Ingebrigtsen (EU) 7:58.85; 4. Stewart McSweyn (AP) 8:02.01;… dnf—Edward Zakayo (AF), Marc Scott (EU), Getaneh Molla (AF), Birhanu Balew (AP).

(Scoring order: 1. Chelimo; 2. Ahmed; 3. Ingebrigtsen; 4. McSweyn; 5. Zakayo; 6. Scott; 7. Molla; 8. Balew.)

110H(0.9): 1. Sergey Shubenkov (EU) 13.03; 2. Ronald Levy (AM) 13.12; 3. Pascal Martinot-Lagarde (EU) 13.31; 4. Antonio Alkana (AF) 13.36; 5. Devon Allen (AM) 13.57; 6. Taio Kanai (AP) 13.72; 7. Ahmad Al-Moualed (AP) 13.83; 8. Oyeniyi Abejoye (AF) 13.84 PR.

Field Events

PV: 1. Sam Kendricks (AM) 19-2¼ (5.85) (18-½, 18-6½, 18-10¼ [2], 19-¼, 19-2¼, 19-4¼ [x], 19-8½ [xx]) (5.50, 5.65, 5.75 [2], 5.80, 5.85, 5.90 [x], 6.01 [xx]); 2. Renaud Lavillenie (EU) 19-¼ (5.80); 3. Shawn Barber (AM) 18-6½ (5.65); 4. Timur Morgunov (EU) 18-6½; 5. Stephen Clough (AP) 16-8¾ (5.10); 6. Valco Van Wyk (AF) 16-8¾ (5.10); 7. Mohamed Amin Habib Romdhana (AF) 16-¾ (4.90).

TJ: 1. Christian Taylor (AM) 57-8½ (17.59) (57-8½, 55-11, p, 57-1½, 56-9½) (17.59, 17.04, p, 17.41, 17.31); 2. Cristian Nápoles (AM) 56-0 (17.07); 3. Fabrice Zango Hugues (AF) 55-10¼ (17.02); 4. Arpinder Singh (AP) 54-5¼ (16.59); 5. Nelson Évora (EU) 54-4¾ (16.58); 6. Ruslan Kurbanov (AP) 53-7½ (16.34); 7. Khotso Mokoena (AF) 53-3¾ (16.25); 8. Pablo Torrijos (EU) 50-7¼ (15.42).

(Scoring order: 1. Taylor; 2. Hugues; 3. Singh; 4. Évora; 5. Nápoles; 6. Kurbanov; 7. Mokoena; 8. Torrijos.)

HT: 1. Dilshod Nazarov (AP) 253-9 (77.34) (246-2, 249-7, 251-1, 252-2, 253-9) (75.05, 76.09, 76.54, 76.87, 77.34); 2. Diego Del Real (AM) 248-11 (75.86); 3. Bence Halász (EU) 245-5 (74.80); 4. Mostafa Hicham Al-Gamal (AF) 243-6 (74.22); 5. Ashraf Amjad Al-Saifi (AP) 243-0 (74.08); 6. Wojciech Nowicki (EU) 235-4 (71.74); 7. Tshepang Makhethe (AF) 217-6 (66.29);… 3f—Sean Donnelly (AM).

(Scoring order: 1. Nazarov; 2. Al-Gamal; 3. Halász; 4. Del Real; 5. Al-Saifi; 6. Nowicki; 7. Makhethe.)

JT: 1. Thomas Röhler (EU) 285-8 (87.07) (f, 276-7, 283-5, 264-5, 285-8) (f, 84.30, 86.39, 80.61, 87.07); 2. Jakub Vadlejch (EU) 278-1 (84.76); 3. Chao-Tsun Cheng (AP) 273-3 (83.28); 4. Anderson Peters (AM) 265-3 (80.86); 5. Neeraj Chopra (AP) 263-3 (80.24); 6. Julius Yego (AF) 257-3 (78.41); 7. Phil-Mar Janse van Rensburg (AF) 250-1 (76.23); 8. Arley Ibargüen (AM) 233-2 (71.08).

(Scoring order: 1. Röhler; 2. Cheng; 3. Peters; 4. Yego; 5. Vadlejch; 6. Chopra; 7. van Rensburg; 8. Ibargüen.)

CONTINENTAL CUP WOMEN, DAY 2

200(0.1): 1. Shaunae Miller-Uibo (AM) 22.16; 2. Dafne Schippers (EU) 22.28; 3. Marie-Josée Ta Lou (AF) 22.61; 4. Shericka Jackson (AM) 22.62; 5. Ofonime Odiong (AP) 22.62 NR; 6. Ivet Lalova-Collio (EU) 23.18; 7. Germaine Abessolo Bivina (AF) 24.08; 8. Viktoriya Zyabkina (AP) 24.34.

800: 1. Caster Semenya (AF) 1:54.77 (x, 8 W) (55.93/58.84);

2. Ajee’ Wilson (AM) 1:57.16; 3. Natoya Goule (AM) 1:57.36; 4. Nataliya Pryshchepa (EU) 1:59.58; 5. Angela Petty (AP) 2:01.26; 6. Anna Sabat (EU) 2:04.43; 7. Besu Sado (AF) 2:08.59; 8. Brittany McGowan (AP) 2:10.63.

St: 1. Beatrice Chepkoech (AF) 9:07.92; 2. Courtney Frerichs (AM) 9:15.22; 3. Winfred Yavi (AP) 9:17.86; 4. Anna Emilie Moller (EU) 9:42.57;… dnf—Aisha Praught-Leer (AM), Ophélie Claude-Boxberger (EU), Weynshet Ansa (AF), Sudha Singh (AP).

(Scoring order: 1. Chepkoech; 2. Frerichs; 3. Yavi; 4. Moller; 5. Praught; 6. Claude-Boxberger; 7. Ansa; 8. Singh.)

400H: 1. Janieve Russell (AM) 53.62; 2. Shamier Little (AM) 53.86; 3. Anna Ryzhykova (EU) 54.47; 4. Meghan Beesley (EU) 55.58; 5. Aminat Yusuf Jamal Odeyemi (AP) 55.65; 6. Wenda Nel (AF) 56.54; 7. Lamiae Lhabz (AF) 57.35; 8. Eri Utsunomiya (AP) 58.92.

Field Events

HJ: 1. Mariya Lasitskene (EU) 6-6¾ (2.00) (5-11½, 6-1½, 6-3¼, 6-4, 6-4¾, 6-5½ [3], 6-6¾, 6-8¾ [xxx]) (1.82, 1.87, 1.91, 1.93, 1.95, 1.97 [3], 2.00, 2.05 [xxx]); 2. Svetlana Radzivil (AP) 6-4¾ (1.95); 3. Levern Spencer (AM) 6-4 (1.93); 4. Marie-Laurence Jungfleisch (EU) 6-3¼ (1.91); 5. Nicola McDermott (AP) 6-1½ (1.87); 6. Inika McPherson (AM) 5-11½ (1.82); 7. Erika Seyama (AF) 5-9¾ (1.77); 8. Hoda Hagras (AF) 5-7¾ (1.72).

LJ: 1. Caterine Ibargüen (AM) 22-9 (6.93) NR (21-11, 22-2¼, f, 22-5¾, 22-9) (6.68, 6.76, f, 6.85, 6.93); 2. Malaika Mihambo (EU) 22-6¼ (6.86); 3. Brooke Stratton (AP) 22-¼ (6.71); 4. Shara Proctor (EU) 21-9 (6.63); 5. Ese Brume (AF) 21-8¼ (6.61); 6. Marthe Koala (AF) 21-8 (6.60); 7. Christabel Nettey (AM) 20-8½ (6.31); 8. Xiaoling Xu (AP) 20-3 (6.17).

(Scoring order: 1. Ibarguen; 2. Stratton; 3. Mihambo; 4. Brume; 5. Proctor; 6. Koala, 7. Nettey, 8. Xu.)

SP: 1. Raven Saunders (AM) 64-9¼ (19.74) (f, 60-3¾, 64-9¼, 63-2¾, 60-4) (f, 18.38, 19.74, 19.27, 18.39); 2. Christina Schwanitz (EU) 64-8¾ (19.73) (61-11½, 64-8¾, 63-¼, 62-6¾) (18.88, 19.73, 19.21, 19.07); 3. Lijiao Gong (AP) 64-5 (19.63); 4. Paulina Guba (EU) 62-1¾ (18.94); 5. Ischke Senekal (AF) 56-1¼ (17.10); 6. Danniel Thomas-Dodd (AM) 55-7¾ (16.96); 7. Noora Salem Jassem (AP) 52-6½ (16.01); 8. Jessica Inchude (AF) 47-7¼ (14.51).

(Scoring order: 1. Gong; 2. Saunders; 3. Schwanitz; 4. Senekal; 5. Guba; 6. Thomas-Dodd; 7. Jassem; 8. Inchude.)

JT: 1. Huihui Lu (AP) 209-7 (63.88); 2. Christin Hussong (EU) 206-7 (62.96); 3. Kara Winger (AM) 198-1 (60.38); 4. Laila Domingos (AM) 197-1 (60.07); 5. Kelsey-Lee Roberts (AP) 194-7 (59.32); 6. Nikola Ogrodníková (EU) 185-8 (56.61); 7. Jo-Ane Van Dyk (AF) 172-10 (52.69); 8. Kelechi Nwanaga (AF) 170-6 (51.97).

(Scoring order: 1. Lyu; 2. Hussong; 3. Winger; 4. Van Dyk; 5. Domingos; 6. Roberts; 7. Ogrodnikova; 8. Nwanaga.)