The Stockholm Diamond League would be the last of the series before the World Championships in August. This gave athletes one last chance to prove on the world stage that they are ready and able to compete in the championships, testing themselves against their fellow competitors.
This event would only come a few days after the end of the Anniversary Games, which took place on both Friday and Saturday of last week. This meant that many of those athletes who performed so well in their events in London, wouldn’t be competing in Stockholm, meaning there would be some watered down start lists which would still give for a great night of athletics.
From a British perspective, the results from this event were better than they were last week. Both Martyn Rooney and Rabah Yousif were competing again where Rooney would come out on top of the two this time, running a SB of 45.41 seconds, inside the qualification mark once again.
The athletes over all events seemed to be a little tired whilst running, many are in the middle of heavy training schedules and looking to peak at the world championships, so the slower times were to be expected. They were not too slow however in the men’s 400m, with the race being won in 44.97 by Machel Cedenio.
With the world record over this distance almost being broken in the Monaco Damond League, this race had lots to live up to. There were a couple of runners in the field – Matthew Centrowitz and Souleiman – who featured in both the Monaco race and the Mile at the Anniversary Games.
With many of the runners having run many races over the past few weeks, it meant that the pace would not be a fast one. Saying this, the field went through the first lap in about 54 seconds, but would accompany this with two consecutive 60 second laps, losing the possibility of a fast time.
Despite the pace being slow, many struggled over the last lap where Souleiman would ease away, running a very fast final 300m to win in 3:33.33. As many expected, Centrowitz would have been in contention to win here, having beaten Souleimanin London, however he was very tired and faded badly over the last 200. The run of the race would come from Jakub Holusa, coming in second with a new national record of 3:34.26.
Men’s Long Jump
The competition in the long jump would be one very different to the one which was seen last week in London. This time, Olympic champion Greg Rutherford would dominate the entire competition, jumping to a distance of 8.34m in the second round to secure the victory by 25cm.
This is interesting to see that it was possible for Rutherford to win so easily. Firstly, it indicates that his poor performance in London was a one off and that when he really needs to, he will perform to the highest level to maintain competitive. But in relation to a point made by Chris Tomlinson on Twitter, he was jumping similar distances to Greg is currently but still was far from winning anything. This may be due to a number of reasons, but the main one indicated is the fact that the competitiveness of the event, along with the quality may be falling? This is something which will be discussed in a later post.
Wow in 2011 I jumped 8.35, 8.30 & 8.20 within 3 weeks and I didn't come close to winning a comp! How times have changed in the LJ world
— Chris Tomlinson (@LongJumpChris) July 30, 2015
After a very fast women’s 100m in London, the runners herein Stockholm had lots to live up to, with the main attraction of Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, the Olympic champion lining up.
As Fraser-Pryce has shown all year, she is still a force to be reckoned with. She certainly is still the big name to beat, being the reigning world champion where she ran a time of 10.71 in Moscow, she showed good form again here. The fast American Torrie Bowie couldn’t live with Fraser-Pryce, who extended her lead in the Diamond Rankings with a time of 10.93 seconds.
Men’s and Women’s 800m
The 800m races were the most successful races of the evening for Britain. We would come in 3rd and 2nd in the men’s and women’s races respectively.
In the men’s race, Michael Rimmer would only secure and prove to everyone why he is going to the world championships, running under 1:46.00 once more in a time of 1:45.97.
Lynsey Sharp had the highest finish of any Brit on the evening, coming in second. She was just outside of her seasons best set in London, running 2:00.29 after just being caught over the last 30m by the Frenchwomen, Renelle Lamote who won in 1:59.91.