By Peter Akinbo.
World record holder Tobi Amusan is excited to compete among fellow record-holders Lamecha Girma and Mondo Duplantis at the Ostrava Golden Spike on 27 June, while Neeraj Chopra will feature in a strong javelin field at the 11th World Athletics Continental Tour Gold meeting of the season.
Amusan set her world 100m hurdles record of 12.12secs in the semifinals of the World Athletics Championships in Oregon and went on to win gold in a wind-assisted time of 12.06secs.
The Golden Spike record of 12.55secs set by Sharika Nelvis in 2015 could be under threat.
“I am excited to race in Ostrava,” said Amusan. “I’ve watched world-class athletes race on that track and I’m looking forward to experiencing an awesome atmosphere while executing a good race.”
Girma clocked 7:58.68 to break the Ethiopian 3000m steeplechase record when he raced in Ostrava last year and he will return to contest the Emil Zatopek Memorial 1500m in 2023. Since that steeplechase performance in Ostrava, Girma has won a second world silver medal in Oregon and he broke the world indoor 3000m record at the World Indoor Tour Gold meeting in Lievin in February, running 7:23.81.
The 1500m meeting record stands at 3:31.17, while the Ethiopian record is 3:29.91. Girma ran his PB of 3:33.77 in 2020.
“I am happy to return to the Ostrava Golden Spike meeting this year to try and run a very fast 1500m time,” he said. “Ostrava is a good track and event for me, and I look forward to seeing the fans again and using their energy to push myself beyond my limits and run a time to make everyone proud.”
At an event that stars Jan Zelezny as meeting director, the javelin will again be in the spotlight. India’s Olympic champion Chopra claimed world silver in Oregon and he will again face the two athletes who joined him on the podium there: Grenada’s two-time world gold medallist Anderson Peters and Czech Republic’s bronze medallist Jakub Vadlejch.
In the women’s competition, Japan’s world bronze medallist Haruka Kitaguchi will go up against Czech Republic’s world finalist Nikola Ogrodnikova.
Duplantis was announced for the meeting in February.