Saturday, September 23, 2017

Russian indoor track and field season starts in Yekaterinburg

The Russian indoor track and field season kicked off on Saturday with its international "Christmas Starts" meeting in Yekaterinburg.

The biggest draw at the 21st Christmas Starts event was Mariya Savinova, the world 800 meter champion. Savinova, who was selected as the European athlete of the year, won the world title in Daegu last year, IAAF.org.

After a whirlwind tour of competitions and celebrations, Savinova declared that she would miss this year's indoor season to target the 2012 Olympic Games in London but decided to make an appearance at the Christmas Starts anyway.

The 800 meter race wasn't part of the Christmas Starts event so Savinova ran the 1000 meters, finishing runner-up with a time of 2:43.40. Twenty-three-year-old Yuliya Tutayeva won the 1000 meters with a time of 2:43.25, while the 20-year-old Ekaterina Poyistogova finished third at 2:43.86, according to IAAF.org.

On the men's side, 2004 Olympic 800 meter champion Yuriy Borzakovski ran the 500 meters, finishing as the runner-up behind Sergei Petukhov.

All of Russia's leading hurdlers also appears at the event to take part in the 60 meter hurdles, with 22-year-old Konstantin Shabanov winning with a time of 7.76. Yevgeniy Borisov, the 2008 World indoor bronze medallist, came in second at 7.79 while Igor Peremota was one-hundredth of a second behind.