CHULA VISTA, Calif. – Manhattan College All-American decathlete Tom Bechert (Munich, Germany) helped Germany defeat the United States 38,899-38,841 at the Thorpe Cup, an annual decathlon/heptathlon dual meet between the two nations, this weekend at the U.S. Olympic Training Center. Representing his national team for the first time, Bechert finished 13th individually with 7075 points.
Bechert began the competition with a time of 11.54 seconds in the 100 meters, good for 744 points. He added 736 points in the long jump, leaping 6.67 meters (21 feet, 10½ inches), then picked up 617 points with a 12.18 m (39’11½) effort in the shot put. Bechert’s best event of Day One was the high jump. He tied for sixth place in the event, scoring 758 points with a clearance of 1.95 m (6’4¾). Bechert finished the first day by collecting 750 points in the 400 meters, finishing in 51.42 seconds. His Day One score was 3605 points.
Traditionally a strong Day Two competitor, Bechert began the second day by posting a time of 15.04 seconds in the 110 meter hurdles, earning 845 points for that result. In the discus, he had the seventh-best mark (40.64 m, 133’4), tallying 678 points in the event. The eighth event was the pole vault, and Bechert notched his best score of the competition with 865 points. He was the top German and tied for second overall, clearing 4.85 m (15’11). After recording 494 points in the javelin (43.58 m, 142’11¾), Bechert concluded the meet by running the 1500 meters in 4:55.21, a 588-point performance.
The Thorpe Cup celebrated its 20th anniversary this year, and the Germans captured the team title for the fourth consecutive time. Germany’s Patrick Spinner was the individual winner with a score of 7906 points. There is also a team heptathlon, which was won by United States 18,117-16,368.