Stadium photo by Stuart J Weir for RunBlogRun 

The 2024 European Athletics Outdoor Championships is just less than two months away from the Paris Olympics. Held in the Stadio Olimpico, the home of the Rome 1960 Olympics the first day opened in a dream way for host country, Italy.

Italy goes 1, 2 in race walk, stadium photo from European Athletics, 

The day’s first event was the 20-kilometer race walk, which was won by Antonella Palmisano, who toured to cheers from the many Italians on the loop course in 1:28.08. Valentina Trapletti, ITA took silver in 1:28.37. A heartbreaking bronze was won by Lyudmila Olyanovska, Ukraine, who went by a prematurely celebrating Laura Garcia-Caro, ESP, both timed in 1:28.48.

Kristjan Ceh wins discus,

In a battle of the titans, Kristjan Ceh, SLO, 68.08mupset world record holder and defending champion, Mykolas Alekna, who was relegated to bronze, 67.48m  by Lukas Weibhaidinger, AUT, 67.70m. Daniel Stahl, Swedish discus star, finished 4th.

In the women’s shot put, the Netherlands went gold and silver! Jessica Schilder, NED, took gold once again, 18.77m, SB 18.67m, and Jorinde Van Klinken took the silver, with Germany’s Yemisi Ogunleye, 2024 world indoor silver medalist, throwing 18.62m.

Two more finals ended the first night of the competition.

In the Mixed relay, 4x400m, Ireland won its first gold in the Europeans since 1998 and Sonia O’Sullivan! The team of Christopher O’Donnell, 46.09, Rhasidat Adekake, 49.53 (NCAA champion, 400m, 2023), super vet, Thomas Barr, 44.90 and Sharlene Mawdsley, 49.40 for a CR 3:09.92. Italy took second in NR 3:10.69 and Femke Bol delivered a bronze for the Netherlands in 3:10.73 as her team gave her the task of covering way too much real estate for NED to have a chance to win!

Nadia Botteceli in crazy hat after winning 5000m

In the final event of the night, the 5,000m, Italy took another gold and established a new National record, Karoline Grovdal lead until the very last 100 meters. Grovdal took the field through even 3 minute kilometers for first three, then brought the page down dramatically, leading 4900 meters. Nadia Battocletti, ITA set a NR and MR with her 14:35.29. Karoline Grovdal, NOR, who gave it her all, took silver in 14:38.62, with Spain’s Marta Garcia taking a tough bronze in NR 14:44.04. Fourth was Maureen Koster, PB 14:44.46 and Nathalie Blomquvist, 14:44.72. The battle for the bronze was terribly close.

Jemma Reekie, GB, won her heat in 1,500m

Impressions on first day? Our man in Rome, Stuart Weir noted, “it is hard to host a meet in a 60,000 seat stadium,” as the crowd on day 1 of the six day afair was quite modest.

You can watch this meet for free at:

Live Streaming including events highlights will be available also available on European Athletics website + Eurovision Sport
Live blog will be available here.
Live results will be available through (registration required)

RunBlogRun will cover the event remotely and on-site for the Running Network from June 7 to 12, 2012.

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Photos courtesy of European Athletics, unless otherwise noted.