Markus Rehm edges closer to 8m long jump goal

Germany's Markus Rehm edges closer to his ultimate goal, whilst Finland's Toni Piispanen had a better result earlier in the day. 01 Jun 2014
Markus Rehm, single leg amputee extends his legs over the long jump pit

Markus Rehm is pushing the boundaries of amputee long jump

ⒸLuc Percival

"No Paralympian has ever jumped 8m before, so this is the big target for the coming season and for my whole sports career, if I’m honest"

Germany’s Markus Rehm showed that he is edging closer to an 8m long jump in the men’s T44 class, after reaching a wind assisted 7.96m at the IPC Athletics Grand Prix in Grosseto, Italy, on Saturday (31 May).

Had it not been for a 2.5m/s gust of wind, he would have added 1cm to his own world record set at the 2013 IPC Athletics World Championships in Lyon, France.

The 25 year old revealed that he has more to offer this season, and is already exceeding his coach’s expectations.

“My goal is definitely 8m. No Paralympian has ever jumped 8m before, so this is the big target for the coming season and for my whole sports career, if I’m honest,” said Rehm who is aiming to peak at August’s IPC Athletics European Championships in Swansea, Great Britain.

He was surprised to get 7.96m, much further than he had been aiming for.

“We have trained a lot at the speed. We made the run up a bit longer and tried to be a bit faster at the end and we have to have more of a routine at the take-off. I think it shows today that the training went really well.”

In other men’s long jump events winners included USA’s Lex Gillette (6.22m) in T11, Russia’s Evgeny Kegelev (6.65m) in T12, Turkey’s Oguz Gokce (5.78m) in T45-47 and Kazakhstan’s Islam Salimov in T13/20/36-38. In the women’s events, Italy’s Arjola Dedaj jumped 4.02m in the T11-12 event, and Russia’s Cristina Minakova (4.89m) was the winner in the T20/37/42/46.

After a disappointing 200m earlier in the day, Finland’s Toni Piispanen won the men’s 400m T51 in 1:25.70.

“I got a new coach after the World Championships and we developed a different training system,” said Piispanen of his success so far this year.

The 38-year-old is focusing on the 100m and 400m as these will be on the Rio Paralympic programme in Rio and is relishing the competition opportunities offered by the IPC Athletics Grand Prix circuit as part of his preparations.

“It’s a certain level of competition, so everything works well and there’s the best athletes in the world there,” he said.

“The Grand Prix events are a really good system. I think it’s going to be a huge event after two years, or something. We have to develop this.”

Adding to the morning’s victory in the 1,500m, Russia’s Egor Sharov (49.11) won the men’s 400m T11/12.

“The 1,500m isn’t really my race, but I’m focusing on the 400m and 800m – that’s my speciality,” said the world champion in both events. “The 1,500m was endurance training for me this morning.”

In the women’s 400m events victories went to Russia’s Anna Sorokina (1:00.39) in T12, Hungary’s Ilona Biacsi (1:04.07) in T13/20/43, Turkey’s Hamide Kurt (1:01.97) in T53, Switzerland’s Alexandra Helbling (58.19) in T54.

In other men’s 400m events, the top spot was claimed by Russia’s Alexez Orekhov (50.60) in T13/43, Turkey’s Mehmet Ali Atmaca (53.87) in T45-57, Italy’s Ruud Lo Koutiki Tsilulu (53.21) in T20/36-38, Switzerland’s Mitic Bojan (54.66) in T34/53, and Finland’s Leo Pekka Tahti (48.94) in the T54 race.

In the men’s discus events, the furthest throws were from Italy’s Marcello Bellandi (11.42m) in F51-53, Serbia’s Drazenko Mitrovic (31.03m) in F54, his teammate Slobodan Miletic (35.96) in F55, UAE’s Jumah Saeed Tenaijy (28.00m) in F56 and Qatar’s Nasser Saed (37.57m) in F57.

In the women’s discus F51-53, Italy’s Deborah Orsi (6.93m) had the furthest throw, whilst her teammates Carmen Acunto (16.28m) and Ermelinda Rosso (14.17m) won the F54-55 and F56-57 respectively.

Great Britain’s Aled Davies added to the morning’s discus victory with a 14.39m throw in the men’s shot put F40-46. Italy’s Antonio Puglisi (7.35m) won the men’s shot put F32, UAE’s Hassan Ali oba Malaleih (7.24m) the F33 event and Qatar’s Abdulraham Abdulrahaman (10.00m) the F34.

In the women’s shot put events, the victories went to Kazakhstan’s Irina Tychsenko (10.03m) in F40-46, Tunisia’s Maroua Ibrahmi (6.25m) F32-33 and Italy’s Giuseppa Nicoletti (3.87m) F34.

Latvia’s Grutzite Liene won the women’s javelin F11-13/F35-38, whilst Serbia’s Milos Grlica (49.68m) had the best throw in the men’s event.

The first day of competition culminated in a men’s 4x100m T42-47 relay, which the German team (44.40) consisting of Felix Streng, David Behre, Markus Rehm and Johannes Floors won against the Italian team (50.88).

Competition will continue at the IPC Athletics Grand Prix in Grosseto on Sunday. For the latest updates on the competition which is supported by IPC Athletics international partner Allianz, please follow @IPCAthletics and please visit the official results page for more information.


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