4th day of competitions at 2012 World Championships: the day of the records!
The 200m sprints: our Majesty Joseba Fernandez was crowned… while former Queen Erika Zanetti failed
First day on the road of San-Benedetto-del-Tronto. Everyone here will remember the 200m sprint finals in the Senior category for two reasons: the extraordinary performance of Joseba Fernadez (Spain) who broke the world record of the distance twice during the day, but also the disqualification of one of the favorites and multi medalist Erika Zanetti (Italy) for two false starts! Otherwise, Colombia has still been dominating but not as much as the other days…
Junior ladies : Colombia 1st
The gold was taken by Columbian skater, Yesenia Escobar in a time of 17.740. She was followed by the local Linda Rossi who had won the gold on the 300m sprint in Ascoli. Magda Garces from Colombia became 3rd. A little bit less than two tenth separates the first one from the second and the second from the third.
Junior men : Colombia 1st and 2nd
The gold and the silver medals were taken by Colombian skaters, respectively Juan Camilo Pérez (16.364) and Andrés Campo (16.382). French skater, Darren de Souza grabbed the bronze (16.402), his first medal of the championship. Times were much closer than in the Junior ladies.
Senior women : two false starts and Zanetti is out
The 200m sprint was punctuated by a series of suprises. After the Korean had grabbed the gold and the silver on the 300m sprint in Ascoli, we could have bet on another performance of the Asians. None of them managed to get a medal.
The greatest and the most impressive surprise came a few minutes after the Koreans’sprints. Erika Zanetti came to the starting line, ready to give her best in front of her public in order to become world champion. The spectators where clapping in their hands when she approached the started line. When she put her feet in place between the two white lines of the starting line, everybody became quiet… And while Zanetti took off, the judge blew his whistle for false departure. Spectators shouted at the judge. Zanetti took place on the starting line again after having shaken her legs and after having probably tried to remain focused on her race. The calm came back on the road again for a few seconds during which Zanetti placed her skates as she is used to, ready to take off again. Everybody was impatient to see Zanetti skating when the judge blew his whistle again, considering that the Italian had made another false start. After a long minute, the speaker announced that Zanetti was disqualified, according to the rules of the International Federation that stipulate that in case of two falses starts on the 200m, the skater is disqualified. What a tragedy for Zanetti! What a tragedy for her fans who were all around the road to encourage her.
After this incredible event, there were two skaters left to go for their 200m sprint: one Argentinian and one Chilean… and the two ladies knew that everything was possible! The Argentinian skater Victoria Rodriguez Lopez did her 200m within 17.594s, beating the World Record. What a challenge for the Chilean who was the last one to go! She probably did her best with a time of 17.741. The Argentinian, Victoria Rodriguez Lopez brought to her country its first gold medal of the championship! Chilean Maria José Mova was 2nd and the local Giulia Bongiorno took the bronze in 17.886.
Senior men: 2 World records in a row
The 200m will be remembered thanks to Joseba Fernandez’ performance. The Spanish beat the world record a first time in the qualifications and a second time in the final (15.879). He logically became World Champion, ahead of Pedro Causil from Colombian (16.127), and the Dutch Michel Mulder (16.151).
Short distances: 200m sprint (all categories)
Brief comments on short distances medals
Colombia performed again by even grabbing one more medal than in Ascoli on the time-trial race. It gained as many titles and silver medals as on the 300M-sprint (not exactly in the same categories, though) and one extra bronze medal. Italy took as many medals as on the 300M-sprint but no title. Argentina and Spain performed amazingly by grabbing the two gold medals in the Senior category. Europeans did better(Thanks to Dutch skater) by winning one more medal and South Korea is the big looser since it got no medals at all while it had grabbed one gold and one bronze medals on the 300M. Chile improved by winning a silver medal instead of the bronze.
By Léa Réguer-Petit
Photos : Daniel Busser