Jakob Ingebrigtsen, Yaroslava Mahuchikh and the Netherlands’ women’s 4x400m quartet took gold on the final night of the World Athletics Championships Budapest 23 to take the European title tally to 16 on Sunday.
Once again athletes from the continent proved their talent with nine Member Federations hearing their national anthems played in the Hungarian capital’s National Athletics Centre and another nine having athletes stand on the medal podium.
Just like last year in Eugene, Jakob Ingebrigtsen redeemed himself with victory in the 5000m days after suffering an unexpected defeat in the 1500m.
Ingebrigtsen stayed in the pack watching all the moves in front of him but was caught slightly unsighted when Mohamed Katir made a bid for glory down the back straight of the last lap.
The Spaniard, hugely motivated himself after crashing out in his 1500m semi, delivered a fierce burst of acceleration that took him clear of the rest of the field, but Ingebrigtsen never panicked and chased him down before passing him with ten metres to go.
Ingebrigtsen stopped the clock in 13:11.30 with Katir second in 13:11.44.
For the first time since the inaugural #WorldAthleticsChamps in 1983, European athletes take gold and silver in the men's 5000m final!— European Athletics (@EuroAthletics) August 27, 2023
🥇 🇳🇴 Ingebrigtsen 13:11.30
🥈 🇪🇸 Katir 13:11.44
🥉 🇰🇪 Krop 13:12.28 pic.twitter.com/8Dj5tr29yC
“To win another world title is great of course. But I was very tired. I tried to save my energy to win at the end because that was the only way tonight. I knew that if my tactics were better than my competitors, I would have a chance to win. And that's what happened, it worked out absolutely perfectly,” said the Norwegian winner.
Mahuchikh was a hugely popular winner in Budapest, with public sympathy behind her and the Ukrainian nation.
With four women remaining in the high jump competition at 2.01m, the reigning European champion was the only one to go clear – which she did on her second attempt – to finally take a global outdoor title after her world championships silver medals in 2019 and 2022 as well as an Olympic bronze in 2021.
"Silvers from Doha and Eugene definitely were not enough for me. I have been one of the best woman high jumpers over the last few years and I badly wanted to become the best in the world officially. Before every single one of my jumps tonight I said to myself that I have to win gold, only gold," reflected the newly-minted world champion.
"This is for all my team that believes in me, for my family, and my father who could not come here to support me, but I felt his energy despite hundreds of kilometres between us. I had to win this gold for my country and all Ukrainian people who are still fighting for peace in Ukraine and for our independence," said Mahuchikh.
The very last title of the world championships went, in dramatic fashion, to the Netherlands 4x400m quartet anchored by 400m hurdles winner Femke Bol.
Eveline Saalberg, Lieke Klaver and Cathelin Peeters kept the Dutch in medal contention, but Bol still took over around 15 metres behind the leaders Jamaica with Great Britian also in front of them.
However, the indefatigable Bol gradually reeled in the two women in front of her, going part Britain’s anchor leg runner Nicole Yeargin with 40 metres to go and then catching Jamaica’s Stacey Ann William with just five metres to the line.
The Netherlands won in a world-leading 3:20.72 which also took 15-hundredths off their national record set when winning their European title 12 months ago.
Great Britain – with Laviai Nielsen, Amber Anning and Anna Pipi providing sterling service before Yeargin brought them home – finished third in 3:21.04.
Earlier, Britain’s Keely Hodgkinson took her second successive silver 800m medal after working her way through on the inside down the home straight to pass the USA’s 2022 world champion Athing Mu.
However, the Briton had no answer to the speed of Kenya’s Mary Moraa, who finished one place behind Hodgkinson in Eugene but turned the tables to come home just ahead of her in Budapest, the pair clocking 1:56.03 to 1:56.61 respectively.
France got their only podium place of Budapest 23 when thy took silver n the penultimate event, the men's 4x400m.
Ludvy Vaillant, Gilles Biron, David Sombe and Téo Andant combined to set a French record of 2:58.45, with Andant just holding off Great Britain's Rio Mitchum in a thrilling head-to-head duel on the anchor leg as the latter brought the British home third in 2:58.71, as the USA took the title for the ninth time in the last ten editions.
Czech Republic's Jakub Vadlejch threw 86.67m with his fifth effort in the javelin to ultimately push Germany’s Julian Weber out of the medals after the latter was in third place for three rounds.
It was Vadlejch’s third World Athletics Championships medal, following on from silver in 2017 and another bronze last year. India’s Tokyo Olympic Games champion Neeraj Chopra won with 88.17m
"I am still more and more hungry for medals and I want to win some gold ones too. I think it was quite obvious that it was not my day today. I struggled with technique a bit but I am proud that I managed to fight to the very end," said the Czech thrower.
"The throws were long and stable but it was not what I wanted. But it was a big fight and I am afraid that Julian Weber will not like me anymore," joked Vadlejch.
No Europeans made the 3000m steeplechase podium but France’s Alice Finot and Slovenia’s Marusa Mismas, Europe’s leading finishers in fifth and sixth, deserves a very honourable mention with their national records of 9:06.15 And 9:06.37 respectively, in both cases taking just over three seconds off their own marks set earlier this summer.