Sprinter Carina Horn and hurdler Antonio Alkana set new personal bests in Turku, Finland on Thursday night, as the speedsters led the charge in a solid all-round performance by the South African contingent at the Paavo Nurmi Games.
Horn won the women’s 100m race in 11.16 seconds at the European Premium Permit meeting, chipping 0.01 off her career record set in St Polten, Austria last year, and inching close towards Evette de Klerk’s 25-year-old SA record of 11.06.
Marie Josée Ta Lou of the Ivory Coast took second place in 11.24.
Alkana, meanwhile, grabbed third position against a world-class field in the men’s 110m hurdles event, clocking 13.47 to improve his previous lifetime best of 13.50 set in Germiston last month.
Former world junior champion Yordan O’Farrill of Cuba stormed to victory in 13.29, edging out countryman Dayron Robles, the 2008 Olympic champion, who settled for second place in 13.32.
In the men’s 100m dash, in-form sprinter Henricho Bruintjies produced another fast time of 10.09 seconds to win his specialist event, albeit with the benefit of a 2.3m/s tailwind.
Mosito Lehata of Lesotho took second position in a closely fought contest in 10.11, with Roberto Skyers of Cuba ending third in 10.13.
Former Olympic silver medallist Khotso Mokoena secured victory in the men’s long jump with a best leap of 7.91m, holding off training partner Zarck Visser who took second place with a 7.82m effort.