Martina Strutz of Germany enjoying her second place of the women's Pole Vault final (Getty Images) © Copyright
General News Karlsruhe, Germany

Strutz and Spiegelburg set for Karlsruhe duel

Martina Strutz and Silke Spiegelburg, Germany’s two highest flyers, will battle it out in what promises to be a marvellous women’s Pole Vault competition at the IHM Karlsruhe meeting in the Europahalle on 12 February 2012.

The IHM Karlsruhe is an IAAF Indoor Permit meeting.

Martina Strutz, 30, was one of the surprise packages of the 2011 IAAF World Championships in Daegu, Korea, as she cleared a 4.80m national record height to take the World silver medal behind Brazilian Fabian Murer. Strutz had only achieved the previous national mark a few weeks early in the outdoor meeting in Karlsruhe when she had leapt 4.78m (12 July).

The 1.60 metre power package, whose career seemed almost finished after some lows in recent years totally rejuvenated herself in 2011. The former gymnast changed coach and went on a strict diet which lost her a total of 10kg, and made her faster on the runway. "Sometimes you must do extraordinary things to improve", commented Martina Strutz.

However, it is Silke Spiegelburg, the 2010 European outdoor silver medallist and the holder of two continental indoor silvers (2009 and 2011), who is still German record holder indoors. In fact her 4.76m  best was set in Karlsruhe last year (13 Feb). At 25-years-old, Spiegelburg remains a formidable competitor who no doubt wishes to regain her number one spot in Germany from Strutz in Olympic year. She has an outdoor personal best of 4.75m from this year's Samsung Diamond League meeting in Stockholm (18 June).

Their battle on Karlsruhe’s runway on 12 February should be one to savour.