Surprise day-1 leader Lyudmila Yosypenko in Gotzis (Lorenzo Sampaolo) © Copyright
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Kasyanov and Yosipenko the overnight leaders in Gotzis - IAAF World Combined Events Challenge

Ukrainians Oleksiy Kasyanov and Lyudmila Yosipenko are the overnight leaders after Day One at the  35th edition of the Hypo Meeting in Götzis, the second leg of the IAAF World Combined Events Challenge.

Kasyanov, this winter’s European Indoor silver medallist in the Heptathlon, finished the first day with 4461 points to lead the Decathlon competition. In the women’s Heptathlon, a battle has developed between Yosipenko, who tallied 3840 points, and her compatriots Hanna Melnichenko (3773 points) and Olympic champion Nataliya Dobrynska (3751 points).

Trey Hardee of the USA ended day one in runner-up position with 4391 points, 70 points behind Kasyanov. Propelled by an impression Long Jump PB of 8.05m, German Michael Schrader ended the day in third with 4341 points. 

Consistent Kasyanov – Decathlon

Hardee, the 2005 NCAA champion, got off to a flying start winning the 100m in a superb 10.48 (980 points) on a sunny morning, setting the fifth best time ever in the event at the Mösle Stadium. Kasyanov showed very good shape as well clocking a new PB with 10.51 (973p). Schrader, last year’s German Decathlon revelation, also lowered his PB with 10.64 (942p).. Jamaican Maurice Smith, the 2007 World silver medallist, finished fourth in 10.77 (912p).

Hardee and Kasyanov continued to impress in the Long Jump where very good performances were produced. Kasyanov, who entered the Götzis meeting with a PB of 7.72m, leapt to a highly impressive 7.88m aided by a tail wind of +2.1 m/s (1030 points). This leap was not enough to win though because Schrader broke the eight-metre barrier with his 8.05m to tally 1073 points. Schrader, 10th at the Olympic Games in Bejing, nailed the third best Long Jump performance at the Mösle Stadium.
World record holder Roman Sebrle, a five-time winner at the Hypo Meeting and Long Jump stadium record holder with 8.11m, jumped 7.86m (1025 points) for third. Hardee missed his long jump PB by one cm with 7.74m. Schrader took the overall lead with 2015 points ahead of Kasyanov (2003 points), Hardee (1975 points), Dutchman Eelco Sintnicolas (1885 points after 10.89 in the 100m and 7.76m in the Long Jump) and Sebrle (1855 points). But disaster struck Smith who produced three fouls to exit the competition early.
Kasyanov reached 14.95m. in the Shot Put (787 points) and moved into the lead with 2790 points overtaking Schrader (2764 points) who put 14.33m (749 points). Hardee put just 13.93m but stayed in third place with 2699 points. Sebrle (fourth with 2670 points) and Germany’s Pascal Behrenbruch, winner in the Shot Put with a good 16.37m for fifth overall (2592) rounded out the top five after three events.

Kasyanov cleared 1.97m in the High Jump to increase his lead over Schrader (1.94m) to 53 points (3566-3513). Hardee cleared 2.00m to stay in third, while Swede Nicklas Wiberg won the event with a 2.12m leap to move into fourth overall (3436) ahead of Sebrle who cleared 1.94m.

Kasyanov ran 48.29 in the 400m, the third fastest on the day, to back up his overall lead with 4461 points. Hardee ran 48.42 to overtake Schrader for second place (4391), 50 points ahead of Schrader who clocked 49.71. Wiberg ran 48.71 for a total overnight score of 4311, while Sebrle (4257) rounded out the top five.

“I set new PBs in the 100metres and the Long Jump which were my best events today,” said Kasyanov, who tallied his 8238 career best in Beijing last year and is competing in Gotzis for the first time. “The only disappointing result was the 400m. It was too windy and I couldn’t run very well. But I am happy with today.”

Schrader, a 21-year-old from Duisburg, was one of the revelations of the first day. “I hoped to jump 7.90, so 8.05 is a big bonus for me,” said Schrader, who is coached by 1987 World Decathlon champion Torsten Voss. “I hope to score 4000 points during the second day.”

Yosipenko surprises, Dobrynska struggles - Heptathlon

Hanna Melnycenko, who is married to Italy’s best Decathlon specialist William Frullani (sixth at the European Indoor Championships) took the win in the 100m Hurdles in 13.45, setting a new PB (1058 points) and holding off Germans Jennifer Oeser (13.53 -1046 points) and Christine Schulz (13.57-1040 points) and Russian Tatyana Chernova (13.69 -1023 points).

Lyudmila Yosipenko, who clocked 13.77 in the Hurdles for 1011 points, leaped a new PB in the High Jump, clearing 1.88m (1080) and beating Yana Maksimava of Belarus on countback and took the overall lead with 2091 points, 30 ahead of her compatriot Melnychenko who cleared 1.82m (1003). Chernova finished third with 1.82m and ranked third with 2026 points followed by Yana Maksimava (2009). Dobrynska, the Olympic champion, lagged behind in seventh place with 1963 points (13.87 in the 100m Hurdles and 1.79m in the High Jump). 

Dobrynska was on verge of disaster after two fouls in the Shot Put but she managed to remain in contention with a 15.13m third round effort, which elevated her to the lead with 2833 points. The Ukraine took the first three spots in the overall ranking with Yosipenko second with 2828 points, just five points behind Dobrynska, and Melnychenko in third place with 2810. German Julia Mächtig took the win in the Shot with a 15.33m and moved into fifth. 

The overall ranking was shaken up after the 200m where Yosipenko ran 23.68 to take the lead with a first day tally of 3840 points. Dobrynska clocked 24.66 and was overtaken by Melnichenko who went into second place with 3773 ahead of the Beijing Olympic champion, who was third with 3751 points.

Dobrynska boasts strong PBs in the Long Jump (6.63m) and in the javelin (48.60m) but she does not seem in the same form which propelled her to Beijing gold. Yvonne Wisse from the Netherlands ran 23.76 to end the day with 3740 points.

Chernova ended the first day back in sixth with 3701 points (13.89 in the 100 hurdles, 1.82 in the High Jump, 12.42 in the Shot Put and 23.95 in the 200m) but can rely on a better second day where she boasts the following PBs: 6.78m in the Long Jump, 54.49m in the javelin and 2:06.50 in the 800m.

Click here for complete Day 1 results

Diego Sampaolo for the IAAF