World Record for Carabin, BR for Crestan and Meeting Record for Alemayo and Magnusson


The 22nd edition of the Meeting International d’Athlétisme de la Province de Liège took place on Wednesday under (miraculously) favourable weather conditions. Wheeler Maxime Carabin immediately set the tone by setting a new World Record in the 100 metres. Liège also witnessed the emotional return of Julien Watrin and a new Belgian record in the 600 metres for Eliott Crestan. The young Ethiopian Marta Alemayo shattered the Meeting Record in the 5000 metres and Leo Magnusson ran a MR in the 3000 metres steeple.

Credit where credit is due: Maxime Carabin, reigning triple World Para-Athletics Champion, opened the Meeting International d’Athlétisme de la Province de Liège in the best possible way.

Earlier this month, Carabin took gold in the 100, 400 and 1,500 metres in the T52 category at the World Championships in Kobe, Japan, and at the Province Naimette Arena he showed spectators that he is still in perfect form. And that is an understatement. ‘Super Maxime’ completed the 100 metres in a new 16.18 World Record. “There’s nothing sweeter than being able to do this in front of a home crowd,” the Liège wheeler commented.

The 110 metres hurdles saw the emotional comeback of Julien Watrin (recovering from cancer), who finished fifth with 13.87. The race was won by German Tim Eikermann in 13.49, ahead of our compatriot Nolan Vancauwemberghe, who is in excellent form and came third with 13.68.

In heptathlete Noor Vidts’ absence, bronze medallist at the European Championships in Rome, Germany’s Marlene Meier won the 100 metres hurdles as a last-minute competitor setting a new personal record dipping under 13 seconds (12.96). Anne Zagré came third in 13.28.

In the 100 metres flat, Rani Rosius (11.33) was beaten by Patrizia Vanderwerken. The Luxembourger, who just missed out on a medal at the European Championships in Rome, won in Liège with a time of 11.11.

Florent Mabille, back-up runner for the golden Belgian Tornados in Rome, took a nice second place in the 400 metres in Liège in 45.83, just behind Dutch winner Jonas Phijffers, who set a new personal record with 45.72. In the 400 metres hurdles, another Belgian, Mimoun Abdoul Wahab, managed a nice victory in 50.02.

In the somewhat unusual 300 metres, victory went to Britain’s Nicole Yeargin (36.76), ahead of Helena Ponette (37.16) and Cynthia Bolingo (37.33).

Eliott Crestan, bronze medallist in the 800 metres at the World Indoor Championships this spring, also tested his skills in the equally unusual 600 metres. And how! The man from Namur set a new Belgian record in 1:14.47 (Joeri Jansen’s 1:15.35 previous record dated from 2002). Crestan beat Pieter Sisk, who also stayed under Jansen’s time with 1:15.19. Kenya’s Ferguson Rotich, silver medallist in the 800 metres at the Tokyo Olympics, finished fourth.

Crestan, the new Belgian record holder, now also holds the best European time this year and was particularly happy afterwards. “I have been chasing this Belgian record for so long. Each time, I had to deal with injuries. Tonight everything came together: the weather, the crowd, a great atmosphere.”

In the jumping events, Thomas Carmoy was the only athlete still in the race after going beyond 2m21. He then tried to improve the meeting record, but failed to jump over 2m27, despite the cheers of the entire stadium.

The pole vault was dominated by Ben Broeders, who is aiming for a place in the finals at the Paris Olympics. Broeders was the last contender at 5m66. Ukrainian Vladislav Malykhin came second with 5m56. Broeders’ three attempts to jump over 5m86, which would be a new Belgian record, were unsuccessful.

The Province Naimette Arena shook during the women’s 5000 metres. Young Ethiopian Marta Alemayo, barely 16 years old, delivered a brilliant performance. The World U20 Cross-Country Champion set a time of 14:39.61, improving both her personal record and the meeting record by almost 20 seconds! Like the meeting itself, Marta Alemayo looks to have a promising future.

Finally, the men’s 3000 metres steeple also produced a new meeting record. This record is now held by Sweden’s Leo Magnusson with a time of 8:21.74. A wonderful end to a great evening of athletics!

Share this post