Austrian heptathlete Ivona Dadic (ÖLV / Katzenbeisser) © Copyright
A team of 13 is ready to shine from July 10-15 in the Olympic Stadium on Montjuic. Never since the inaugural Championships in Athens 1986 has the Austrian delegation has been bigger. Additional athletes might still be able to break the qualification standards.
Headliner of the team is undoubtedly Ivona Dadic. She scored a brilliant 5959 points at the Combined Events Challenge meet in Götzis in May, thereby setting a new national record and achieving Olympic qualification. Despite a start in London on the cards her participation in Barcelona has never been put into question:
"As an 18 year old these are 'my' championships. I hope to get my build-up right. The aim is a place in the top-8," said Dadic, who is currently number three in the world junior list and most recently improved her PB in the long jump to 6.30m at the international meet in Ried, Austria. Of course the Olympics is a dream to come true for her and she puts in everything for a good performance at the British capital in August.
Austrian youth head coach Christian Röhrling eyes some other athletes with the chance for a place in the top-10, among them long jumper Manuel Leitner (PB 7.57m) and pole vaulter Kira Grünberg (SB 3.95m):
"Ivona is like a poster girl of our team. I’m sure that in her wake others can perform strongly as well," Röhrling said. "Many of our team members have moved up from the World Youth Championships in Lille last year. That is a big step, while for others it will be their first appearance at an international level.
800m runners Nikolaus Franzmair (PB 1:49.96) and Dominik Stadlmann (PB 1:50.69), both still only 17, may fight for a place in the semifinals. Likewise sprint hurdler Sebastian Kapferer (PB 14.22), Thomas Kain (400m Hurdles PB 52.42) and sprinter Rosalie Tschann (PBs 11.90 / 24.48) have the chance to proceed from the heats. Moreover Tschann leaped 6.21m to break the standard in the long jump as well.
Pole vaulter Lukas Wirth is about to turn 17 in June but has cleared five metres several times. Ines Futterknecht (400m SB 55.21) already competed at the World Youth Championships in Lille 2011 while Carina Schrempf (400m PB 54.95), Eva Wimberger (100m hu PB 14.17) and young Susanne Walli (born 1996, 400m PB 56.08), are looking forward to their international championships debut.
For the first time ever Austria sends a 4x400m Relay team to World Junior Championships. The junior women’s team will be set up by Ines Futterknecht, Carina Schrempf, Rosalie Tschann, Susanne Walli and Ivona Dadic.
"Overall we have a team with good prospects. Some of them will be a driving force in future Austrian Olympic teams," Röhrling concludes.
Andreas Maier for the IAAF
Team Austria (provisional) for the IAAF World Junior Championships, Barcelona 2012
800m: Nikolaus Franzmair, Dominik Stadlmann
110m hu: Sebastian Kapferer
400m hu: Thomas Kain
PV: Lukas Wirth
LJ: Manuel Leitner
100m/200m/LJ: Rosalie Tschann
400m: Ines Futterknecht, Carina Schrempf
100m hu: Eva Wimberger
PV: Kira Grünberg
Heptathlon: Ivona Dadic
4x400m: Ivona Dadic, Ines Futterknecht, Carina Schrempf, Rosalie Tschann, Susanne Wall