Femke Bol and Lieke Klaver qualified for the finals of the 400 meters at the European Indoor Championships in Torun on Friday. Top favorite Bol recorded the fastest time of all three semi-finals with 51.17, while Klaver had to go deeper. Among the men, no fewer than three Dutchmen qualified for the final battle.
The 21-year-old Bol was able to hold back at the end of her semi-final and saw the British Jodie Williams finish second behind her in 52.09. On Friday afternoon, the Amersfoortse ran 52.77 in the series.
Bol, who has the fastest time of this year with 50.64, is the biggest contender for gold in Torun. It went through a spectacular development in 2020 and is still performing surprisingly well in 2021.
The numbers 1 and 2 of each semi-final went through to the final, which is scheduled for Saturday evening. Klaver qualified for the final by finishing second in her semi-final. She ran 52.09 and the Polish Justyna Swiety-Ersetic won that race in a national record of 51.34.
Lisanne de Witte finished fourth in her semifinal in 53.10 and that was not enough. The 28-year-old North Holland took bronze two years ago at the European Championship in Glasgow, but partly due to injuries, she is now performing less well.
Bonevacia, Dobber and Van Diepen make an impression
In the men, Liemarvin Bonevacia, Tony van Diepen and qualified for the final on the 400 meters on Friday. Never before have there been three (out of a total of six finalists) Dutchmen in the final battle at an indoor European Championship. It was also remarkable that all three were the fastest in their series.
Van Diepen won his series in the semi-finals in an impressive way. He was in third place after the first lap, still behind the Czech three-time European champion Pavel Maslak, but accelerated strongly on the second lap and advanced to first place. Van Diepen, who conquered European Championship bronze in 2019, finished in a personal best of 46.06.
Bonevacia also ran a strong race in his heat in the semi-finals. The Dutch champion came through first after 200 meters and walked away from his competitors in the second round. He put 46.75 on the clock.
Dobber did it the same way as Bonevacia did; going full from the start to be the first to get through halfway and then to hold the first place to the end. De Santpoorter came out with a time of 46.56.
The Dutch men performed much less well on the 800 meters. Djoao Lobles, Thijmen Kupers and Jurgen Wielart did not finish in the first three in their series and therefore did not qualify for the semi-finals. In 2015 Kupers took bronze at the European Championships in Prague.
Painter qualifies for Games
For shot put star Jessica Schilder it was a wonderful evening in Torun. The Volendam assured himself with a personal record of participation in the Games in Tokyo.
The 21-year-old Volendam came to a distance of 18.69 meters, which was well above the Olympic limit of 18.50 meters. She finished fifth in the final.
On Thursday evening, Schilder qualified for the final with a distance of 18.48 meters, which was also a personal record. The title went to the Portuguese Auriol Dongmo, who came to a distance of 19.34 meters.