Athletics fans were treated on the weekend to two indoor championships either side of the Atlantic; the European championships in Belgrade and the USA championships in Albuquerque. Lots of different distances were contested, records were broken and world leads were set. But what if we combine the two competitions into one and look at the results as a battle between Europe and the USA?
With the US champs mixing up the distances (a nice touch which adds distinctiveness to indoor competition), there were only 16 finals that could be compared head-to-head with the more traditional European championship events. This rules out performances from Noah Lyles, Ajee Wilson, Laura Muir etc (sorry).
Europe v USA: combined results medals table
Europe would have swept the medals, with clean sweeps in the heptathlon (led by Mayer and his area record), pentathlon, long jump (both men and women—with Spanovic leading the women and going 3rd on the all-time list) and the men’s shot put.
We have two dead heats (for lack of thousandths data): Richard Kilty and Leshon Collins for silver in the 60m, both clocking 6.54, while Andrew Pozzi and Aries Merritt tie in the 60m hurdles both with 7.51.
In the women’s 60m, Asha Philip records the best women’s time with a new British record of 7.06, while Kendra Harrison clocks the fastest time in either women’s hurdles final with 7.81 (slower though than her scorching 7.74 in her heat).
Robbie Grabarz beats Erik Kynard for silver in the men’s high jump on count back—while there is nothing between Sam Kendricks and Piotr Lisek (5.85m, both with one failure) for gold in the men’s pole vault. Ronnie Baker (along with Harrison) secures one of only two outright golds for the USA team (60m, 6.45). In our little, fairly unscientific exercise, Europe wins!