8/5/2018 8:00:28 PM

Germany eye Euro domination as Warholm lines up double

Germany eye Euro domination as Warholm lines up double

Berlin, Germany: Johannes Vetter headlines a strong German team that will bid to dominate the European Athletics Championships at Berlin's Olympic stadium this week, while Norway's Karsten Warholm has lined up a shot at a rare 400m/400m hurdles double.

Germany, boasting a squad of 128 athletes, will eye a potential sweep in the men's javelin given they can start with world champion Vetter, newly-crowned German champion Andreas Hofmann and Rio Olympic gold medallist Thomas Roehler.

Estonia's Magnus Kirt (89.75m) and Czech Republic's Jakub Vadlejch (89.02m) will be looking to challenge the German triumvirate.

"They (the Germans) can all throw over 92 metres, so I'm looking forward to seeing that," said Germany's David Storl, the multi-medalled shot putter seeking a fourth successive European title.

Storl is one of five reigning European champions representing the host nation, alongside Christina Schwanitz (shot put), Max Hess (triple jump), Cindy Roleder (100m hurdles) and Gesa Felicitas Krause (3000m steeplechase).

More medal hopes for Germany also lie in the men's discus. Olympic champion Christoph Harting is joined by Olympic bronze medallist Daniel Jasinski and older brother Robert, who famously won the world title in the same stadium in 2009, in his farewell to major championships competition.

Warholm caused one of the upsets of the meet when he stormed to gold in the 400m hurdles at last year's world championships in London.

But he insists he's largely unchanged since that victory and confident of his ability of doubling up in the German capital. Warholm stands sixth fastest in European 400m lists this season with a best of 45.14sec.

"Of course when you win the world championship there are always pressure and expectations, but I think that's an advantage," the Norwegian said.

"I like the energy that gives me. Hopefully I'm even more prepared than last year.

"You only live once, so you've got to take the chance."

His biggest obstacle in the 400m flat could well be Matthew Hudson-Smith, the Briton who has clocked the fastest one-lap time this year.

"Run fast and turn left!" the Briton joked of his tactics.

Britain could also do well at this 24th edition of the European champs.

They have Zharnel Hughes racing the men's 100m and Dina Asher-Smith going for triple gold in the  100/200/4x100m relay.

Long-time European powerhouses Russia are officially suspended from international competition, but will be represented by athletes competing under a neutral banner.

Top of that group is Mariya Lasitskene, who has dominated the women's high jump in recent competition and should prove to be formidable competition.

The European Athletics Championships is part of the newly-launched, multi-sport European Championships that sees competition between 4,500 sportsmen and women from 52 countries in athletics, aquatics, rowing, golf, cycling, gymnastics and triathlon.

All but track and field are being held in and around Glasgow between August 2-12.

The idea of a consolidated trans-sport European champs was launched in a bid to group together sporting events to attract bigger crowds and television audiences amid the ever-increasing dominance of football.

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