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Saturday, April 20, 2024

Hurdler hopped to victory at Bislett

Norway’s Christina Vukicevic had been full of energy all week and made it clear she was ready to win at the Diamond League Bislett Games in Oslo on Friday. And she did, before thousands of cheering Norwegian fans.

Christina Vukicevic, whose Serbian father has been a longtime coach, won her event at Bislett in Oslo on Thursday before cheering fans. This photo is from last year's games. PHOTO: Diamond League

Vukicevic, age 23, was moved to tears after winning the 100-meter hurdles. She’d been favoured, and was just so glad that she delivered.

“I never even cry at funerals but now I’m crying on the field,” she sobbed to Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK). But they were tears of joy after winning on home turf at the classic Bislett Stadium on the outskirts of downtown.

“I did it, it’s so heavenly wonderful,” she told NRK. She won the 100-meter race over hurdles in 12.79 seconds. It was her best performance of the year and only five-one-hundredths of a second behind her own Norwegian record from 2009.

And she did it early in the season, in pouring rain. Her victory unleashed a deafening roar from the crowd of happy Norwegian fans and she savoured the moment, taking plenty of time to make an honorary run around the stadium, bowing and waving to the grandstands.

She was the only Norwegian favored to win on Thursday night, after her former partner, javelin star and Olympic gold medalist Andreas Thorkildsen, had to withdraw because of injury. He normally has the highest profile at Bislett, but now it was her turn as she beat Kristi Castlin and Nicole Denby of the US, who had times of 12.95 and 13.06 respectively.

Runner Usain Bolt, meanwhile, crushed his competition at Bislett, winning the 200-meter race with a time of 19.86 seconds and maintaining his title as the fastest man on earth. Norwegian runner Ezinne Okparaebo also was pleased with her third place in the women’s 100-meter race.

Views and News from Norway/Nina Berglund
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