London 2012 Olympic Games Pole Vault silver medallist Yarisley Silva cleared a Central American and Caribbean record of 4.81m and javelin thrower Guillermo Martinez had an outstanding effort of 85.59m to provide the highlights of the Cuban National Championships when ended on Sunday (17).
After an initial failure at the opening height of 4.50m, Silva then cleared 4.61m and 4.81m in quick succession to break her Area record of 4.78m, set a month earlier indoors in Stockholm. She then tried 4.90m unsuccessfully.
“I am surprised as my aim was just to stay consistent. However, this is a height for which I have been training for a long time,” said Silva.
“It was not my best day. I am still a bit tired from an intense indoor season, but it was important to compete and do my best in front of my people,” she added.
The 25-year-old will now start a new training period aiming to extend her run-up from 14 to 16 steps and move her grip higher from 4.30m to 4.50m as part of setting her sights even higher.
Her first international meeting this summer is set to be the Samsung Diamond League meeting in New York on 25 May.
Two-time IAAF World Championships medallist Guillermo Martinez produced his second best ever mark on home soil, and his best throw anywhere since 2011, when he hurled his spear out to 85.59m in the second round of the Javelin.
“The run-up and coordination were excellent, that’s my secret weapon,” commented Martinez, who finished his day after just two attempts. “This result shows I am on track in my intentions to win a third (World Championships) medal in Moscow.”
The women’s Discus also produced world class results when 2010 World junior champion Yaimi Perez threw a personal best of 66.01m to beat World and Olympic medallist Yarelis Barrios, who achieved 65.17m.
“I have had a good training to accomplish this result, but honestly, I did not expect to achieve it now,” said Perez, who started the year with a best of 62.50m. “I am enjoying a healthy rivalry with my training partners and I will continue to train to finish among the top eight at the World Championships.”
Barrios was happy with what she accomplished but admitted a lack of coordination was the main priority to work on. “I have to improve in my rotations. I was not expecting more than what I managed today.” 2011 World Championships finalist Denia Caballero was third with 63.40m.
Reve-d up Triple Jump
Ernesto Reve retained his national title and confirmed himself as the new emerging star of the Cuban Triple Jump school. Despite challenging wind conditions, the 2010 IAAF World Junior Championships silver medallist landed at a big personal best of 17.46m, and into a 1.5 mps breeze, to secure gold.
Back to the sandpit after an injury sidelined her from the 2012 season, 2009 World Championships triple Jump silver medallist Mabel Gay took the women’s title with 14.09m. Two-time former World champion Yargelis Savigne finished a distant fourth with 13.66m.
Another two-time former world champion, hammer thrower Yipsi Moreno, who will retire after the World Championships in Moscow, bid farewell to the National Championships with another title thanks to her 72.36m toss.
“I was a bit anxious. My goal was 72 metres, but in a competition you forget which shape you are in and want to throw farther. I tried to go for a bigger result as I felt well, but my body is not ready yet,” she commented.
Orlando Ortega’s false start impacted on a much awaited 110m Hurdles final. In the absence of the 2012 Olympic finalist, Ignacio Morales won with 13.54.
Emerging athletes in the combined events confirmed their potential. Another close battle in the Heptathlon between 2012 World junior champion Yorgelis Rodríguez and 2011 World Youth gold medallist Yusleidys Mendieta led them both to break the 6000m points for the first time with the former setting a national junior record of 6186 points. Mendieta had a total of 6024 points.
Both women had excellent javelin performances in the penultimate event, both throwing over 48 metres with Rodriguez added nearly seven metres to her previous best with a throw of 48.70m
José Ángel Mendieta, the 2012 Pan American Cup Champion, improved to 7953 points in the Decathlon and looks forward to becoming the next Cuban decathlete in the 8000 club.
World and Olympic medallist Leonel Suarez opted for the Discus only and threw the implement to 45.85m.
Junior Diaz went over eight metres with a leap of 8.02m in his first season solely focused on the Long Jump.
Javier Clavelo Robinson for the IAAF