The women’s hammer event was a somewhat promising after the qualification rounds. The Polish hammer thrower Anita Wlodarczyk clearly won the event with a new championship record of 78,76m. She was followed by Martina Hrasnova 74,66m and Joanna Fiodorow 73,67m.
Joanna Fiodorow opened the competition with a big throw of 72,24m and took the lead. Anita Wlodarczyk fouled her first attempt. Only Kathrin Klaas and Martina Hrasnova managed to throw also over the 70m mark. During the second round Kathrin Klaas took over with her improved throw of 72,89m.
It was a nerve-wracking event. The rain made it not easy to athletes. The favorite Antia Wlodarczyk found it difficult at first. After two failed attempts she finally managed to have a valid throw which was measured 75.88m. Anita took over the lead and in the end this would have been already enough to take gold home.
During the third round Wlodarczyk was even trying to get close the Betty Heidler’s world record of 79,41m. Her best attempt was measured 78,76m which is not only a new national record but also the longest throw in the history of the European Championships. The Slovakian Martina Hrasnova also improved during the fifth round (74,66m) and pushed Kathrin Klaas from the second place.
Kathrin Klaas was still hoping to finally get a medal at major championships. Especially after her 5th place at the 2012 Olympic Games with a massive toss over 76m and her 4th place at the 2012 European Championships in Helsinki. But it seems that the second Polish hammer thrower did not accept to be only 4th in the competition. She improved during her last round to 73,67m and kicked Klaas off the podium. Unfortunately, Kathrin could not improve anymore and remain with the ungrateful 4th place once again.
Betty Heidler placed 5th
The world record holder Betty Heidler was not part of the fight for the medals at all. The results of the past major championships seemed not to change in Zurich as well. The only thing Heidler can be happy about is that she still holds the world record and that Anita did not get it (yet). Heidler’s best attempt was measured 72,39m which was enough for the 5th place behind Kathrin Klaas.
I am extremely happy. I was very nervous after my two false attempts. I knew I had to do an excellent third attempt, I knew I had to do it on the last one and I did it. So, I made it to the final eight. When I achieved this it was like starting a normal competition. I am very happy with the NR. It has been a tough season, with my injury which made me miss the first half out the outdoor competitions. I also missed the European team championships in Braunschweig. I hope to break the world record on August 23rd at the Warsaw meeting.
Two silver medals for Slovakia in one day – that is unbelievable. I am glad I managed to defend my second place from Helsinki but I have to say that I appreciate this medal much more. It was more difficult to get it and before the season started, I thought that maybe I would not even get to Zurich because I had some health problems. It is very hard to beat Anita as she is so strong, but I still hope that one day I will also win gold. I want to dedicate the medal to my grandfather who would celebrate his 76th birthday today. But unfortunately he died this year and it made me very sad.
I am happy. I still cannot believe it. I guess I am the most happy person in the world right now. This was a very important competition for me because after our National championships the Polish federation first would not let me come here with the team. So today I proved that it was the right decision with my bronze medal. These European championships is only the beginning of a big career for me.