Even without the motivation of a World Indoor Championship meet this year, we've seen some strong indoor performances across the globe in the past week. High jumping is always a highlight of the indoor season, and the premier high jumper so far is Mutaz Essa Barshim of Qatar. Barshim cleared 2.37 meters (7 feet, 9¼ inches) to win the Russian Winter meet in Moscow on Sunday, and 2.36/7-8¾ at the Europa SC high jump competition in Slovakia Wednesday. Russia's Aleksey Dmitrik cleared 2.36 to win the Arnstadt high jump meet on Saturday.
Renaud Lavillenie of France won the season's top pole vault duel to this point, clearing 5.83/19-1½ to beat Germany's Bjorn Otto in the Weltklasse meet in Karlsruhe on Saturday. Three days later, Otto topped 5.83 to win the Golden Indoor Pole Vault meet in the Czech Republic, while Yarisley Silva of Cuba cleared 4.71/15-5¼ to win the women's competition. American Jenn Suhr tops the women's pole vault charts, however, leaping past the 4.76/15-7¼ mark at the New Balance Indoor Grand Prix in Boston Saturday. Great Britain's Holly Bleasdale won at Moscow by clearing 4.75/15-7.
Both young and old runners have given fans some excitement in 3000-meter competition. Hagos Gebrhiwet of Ethiopia, age 18, set a world junior indoor 3000-meter record to win in Boston, running 7:32.87, with Galen Rupp of the U.S. second in a personal best 7:33.67. On the other side of the age spectrum, 38-year-old American Bernard Lagat won at Karlsruhe in 7:34.71. Ethiopia's Meseret Defar, a middle-aged runner at 29, won the Karlsruhe women's 3000 in 8:35.28.
Karlsruhe also featured strong 1500-meter running, featuring wins for Mahiedine Mekhissi-Benabbad of France in the men's race in 3:36.95 and Genzebe Dibaba of Ethiopia on the women's side in 4:02.25.
American Long jumper Janay DeLoach tried a different type of horizontal jumping at Boston, winning the 60-meter hurdles in 7.97.