The Six Greatest Moments From The European U20 Championships In Italy

The Six Greatest Moments From The European U20 Championships In Italy
Photo: european-athletics.org
The European U20 Championships wrapped up on Sunday in Grosetto, Italy, and many of the sport's top young stars were on display (including several U18 talents we didn't get to see at World Youths due to terrorism fears). Here were the top moments from the four-day meet.

RESULTS HERE

Boy's Pole Vault: U.S. High School Star Mondo Duplantis Sets A Championship Record For Sweden


Despite being just 17 years old, Mondo Duplantis came into this event as the favorite, and he delivered, vaulting an impressive 5.65m for the win after a long U.S. high school season. His championship-record performance will be sure to give him some confidence ahead of next month's World Championships in London, where he'll be representing Sweden. After this past weekend's competition, Mondo said, "I came here only to win, and I did it. Competing in Italy has been nice, but now my mind is pojected to the World Championships in London. My target there will be to catch a medal."

Mondo talks just before the pole vault final:



​Watch the trailer for our FloFilm on Mondo:



Boy's Decathlon: Niklas Kaul Breaks 35-Year-Old World Junior Record


Torsten Voss' epic world junior record of 8,397 points in the decathlon had stood since 1982, and who would have thought that none other than his own countryman Niklas Kaul of Germany would be within striking distance of the record coming into the final 1500m event in Grosetto. Though Kaul just missed out on the 1500m win, his time of 4:15.37 (quite respectable for any multi-athlete) was enough to put him 38 points ahead of the old record with a final score of 8,435.

​Watch Niklas' 1500m run: 



Boy's 1500m & Steeplechase: Jakob Ingebrigtsen Gets His "Great Revenge"


Ingebrigtsen went into these championships attempting possibly the most difficult triple of the meet -- the 1500m, 5000m, and 3000m steeplechase. Having run a 3:56 mile earlier this season, it's safe to say he was a heavy favorite to win the 1500m, but a devastating fall in the final cost him his first title. Was it karma from celebrating prematurely in the heats? Some might say, but Ingebrigtsen certainly redeemed himself and more by winning the 5000m and 3000m steeplechase with ease, this time making sure to celebrate only when the standings were set. "I'm very excited for winning, it was my main goal and after I fell down yesterday it was a great revenge," Ingebrigtsen said after the race.

​Watch Jakob's easy 1500m heat win and celebration:



​Watch Jakob's steeplechase win here:



Girl's 400m Hurdles: Six Of The Eight Finalists Walk Out With PBs


In a heat reminiscent of the legendary USATF 400m hurdles final earlier this year, six of the eight finalists in Grosetto pulled through with big PBs when it mattered most. The top three runners, Yasmin Giger, Agata Zupin, and Viivi Lehikoinen, all ran faster than any junior in the world this year not named Sydney McLaughlin. Zupin even set a national senior record of 55.96 for her home country of Slovenia. Following her 55.90 gold, Giger said, "I didn' t expect to win the gold today but I had to be cool and just run till the end of the race. The atmosphere really helped because when you hear the crowed that cheers for you, you can only go faster. I gave my best from the begginning to the end and the result came on its own."

​Watch the 400m hurdles final:



Girl's 3000m Steeplechase Final: Tira Pavuk Sacrifices Her Place To Check Her Fallen Teammate


In the final laps of the women's steeplechase, Lili Toth of Hungary was running well in the pack, determined to finish the race in a good position, before a devastating fall left her trampled on the inside of the track. Rather than blaze by her, countrywoman Tira Pavuk surprised the spectators and her competitors by stopping to check in on Toth and help pick her up. Ultimately, Toth ended up a DNF, but Pavuk went on to finish 12th in the final, behind winner Lisa Oed of Germany.

​Watch the act of sportsmanship:



Boy's High Jump: Maksim Nedasekau Pops A 2.33m Rocket


Not to be outdone by the unlikely World Youths high jump winner, Maksim Nedasekau of Belarus shocked the stadium by launching a 2.33m jump. That mark knocked off a historic 40-year-old championship record and pushed Nedasekau into the gold medal position, where he would securely stay, beating second place by 5 centimeters. The mark places him fourth on the senior world list this year, ahead of all Americans so far.

​Watch Nedasekau's jump here:

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