Ten days to go to the Golden Gala – Pietro Mennea the build-up to the 33nd edition of the Rome meeting, the fifth leg of the IAAF Diamond League, is reaching its final stage.
In the magic athletics night headlined by Lightning Bolt, who will run the men’s 100 metres for the third consecutive year in Rome, there will be many more athletics stars ready to highlight the Rome meeting in the Olympic Stadium. The men’s pole vault starting at 19.30 in front of the Northern Curve will feature the entire podium of the London Olympic Games with gold medallist Renaud Lavillenie, silver medallist Bjorn Otto and bronze medallist Raphael Holzdeppe.
The 26-year-old Frenchman was undefeated in all major events in 2012 winning the Olympic Games, the World Indoor Championships and the European Championships to complete a Grand Slam. He continued his winning streak in 2013 winning the European Indoor Championhips in Gothenburg.
Unfortunately his competition was marked by his third attempt at 6.07 was discounted as a foul, as the bar bounced up onto the upright holders rather than the pegs, although it did not fall.
Lavillenie has been the undisputed star of the Diamond League since the first edition and won the last two editions of the Golden Gala where he vaulted 5.82 in both editions. In Rome the French record holder (6.01 outdoors and 6.03 indoors) will square off against his two German arch-rivals Bjorn Otto and Raphael Holzdeppe. Is Rome the right stage where he will be able to upstage Lavillenie putting an end to his role as “eternal second” to the French Olympic champion who won all direct clashes from Istanbul 2012 to Gothenburg 2013?
Lavillenie leads 7-1 in the previous head-to-head clashes until now. Otto finally managed to beat his French rival on 27th April at the Drake Relays in Des Moines clearing 5.80 to 5.70. Last year after the Olympic Games Otto broke the 6 m barrier clearing 6.01 at Aachen (Germany). Otto leads 13-8 in the previous head-to-head clashes against Holzdeppe who cleared 5.91 in the Olympic final in London. Two more 5.90 m vaulters to watch are Cuban record holder Lazaro Borges and German Malte Mohr.
Italian fans will support Giuseppe Gibilisco and Claudio Stecchi who represent two different generations. The 34-year-old from Siracusa, 2003 World champion in Paris with the Italian record of 5.90 will face 21-year Claudio Stecchi, an athlete from Florence, who won the World Junior silver medal in 2010 and cleared a personal best of 5.60. Gibilisco has just made his outdoor debut this season clearing 5.30 m in windy conditions in Vila Real de Santo Antonio (Portugal) contributing to the triumph of the Fiamme Gialle athletics team at the European Club Championships. Both athletes compete for the Fiamme Gialle.
All the top pole vaulters have competed on the runway of the Olympic Stadium in the last three decades and made the history of this discipline in this stadium. One of the highlights of the Golden Gala was the magic night of 1984 when Sergey Bubka and Frenchman Thierry Vigneron engaged a memorable clash in which they improved more times the world record until the former Soviet super-star broke the world record at 5.94, which still stands as the Golden Gala record.
Tickets – The tickets to attend the 2013 edition of the Golden Gala are available in allTicketone shops and online on www.ticketone.it. Ticketone is ticketing partner of the 2013 Golden Gala (in the sport section or seeking Golden Gala on the search engine on the Ticketone website. Ticket prices are as follows (pre-sell fee not included: Monte Mario Main Stand (100 m starting-line) 40 Euros, Tribuna Tevere 20 Euros, Distinti Arrivi 15 Euros; Curve and Distinti 5 Euros.
The Golden Gala pass – This year all athletics fans will have the chance to attend the Golden Gala moving around the different sections of the Stadium using a special Golden Gala Pass. The Golden Gala pass can be bought at only 30 Euros on Ticketone and will give the access to the following reserved seats: Curva Sud Sector 19, Distinti Sud Est sector 22, Tribuna Tevere sector 40, Distinti Nord Est sector 45, Curva Nord sector 48, Distinti Nord Ovest sector 51.