Annette Echikunwoke’s performance over the weekend was the highlight on the Nigerian Track & Field scene as she broke her own Nigerian and African Record, hurling her implement out to a huge 75.49m in the women’s Hammer Throw at the USATF Throws Festival in Arizona. This means Echikunwoke in 2021 alone has broken the African Record four times and present record came just two days after she set the previous mark of 73.93m to qualify for the Olympics!
Gwen Berry did enough for the win as she threw 76.79m ahead of Brooke Anderson in 2nd with 76.36m.
At the same competition, National Record (NR) holder Chioma Onyekwere in the women’s Discus Throw, surpassed 60 metres again, throwing 61.89m to take 5th.
Netherlands’ Jorinde van Klinken emerged winner as she broke ground to a new PB & World Lead (WL) of 70.22m, holding off Jamaica’s Shadae Lawrence who set a new Jamaican NR of 67.05m and Kelsey Card with 63.18m.
Chukwuebuka Enekwechi also finished 5th in a high quality men’s Shot Put in Arizona, throwing a Season’s Best (SB) of 21.18m as his compatriot Dotun Ogundeji also improved his SB to 20.74m to draw close to qualifying for the Olympics. The event was taken by Ryan Crouser at a groundbreaking 23.01m, defeating World Champion Joe Kovacs who also got a massive 22.04m and Darrell Hill with 21.88m.
Oluwatobiloba Amusan maintained her good form this season, finishing 2nd in the 100m Hurdles at the Continental Tour Gold in Boston, clocking 12.62s (-0.9) behind Kendra Harrison who won the race in 12.49s. Amusan is warming up nicely for the Olympic Games, and is currently the joint 2nd fastest in the world in 2021.
National Record holder, Edose Ibadin made an impressive start to the 2021 season at the NYC Mile Trials in New York, clocking a time of 1:46.88 to finish 4th in the men’s 800m. The race was won by Jesus Lopez in a dominant 1:45.24, coming after a NR of 1:44.40 earlier this season and followed by Vincent Crisp in a Season’s Best (SB) of 1:46.31, while Alex Amankwah was 3rd in 1:46.75.
In what was the headline race of the Gateshead Diamond League, Blessing Okagbare placed fifth in the women’s 100m with a time of 11.57s as Dina Asher-Smith braved the odds to win in 11.35s into a strong 3.1m/s headwind, almost a metre clear of American sensation Sha’Carri Richardson’s who clocked 11.44 and Marie Josée Ta Lou in an SB of 11.48s.