Banská Bystrica High Jump Meeting - Mutaz Essa Barshim wins in Oregon22
EUGENE, OREGON - JULY 18: Mutaz Essa Barshim of Team Qatar competes in the Men's High Jump Final on day four of the World Athletics Championships Oregon22 at Hayward Field on July 18, 2022 in Eugene, Oregon. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images for World Athletics)

The 30th anniversary edition of the Banská Bystrica High Jump Meeting is set to be a star-studded event, headlined by Qatari high jumper Mutaz Essa Barshim. Barshim, who holds the meeting record with a leap of 240 cm, will return to Banská Bystrica after a six-year absence. His previous wins at the event include 236 cm in 2013 and a record-equaling 240 cm in 2015, with a second-place finish in 2018 (236 cm).

His illustrious career includes three world championship titles, two Olympic silvers, and a World Indoor Championship title, along with multiple other accolades. Notably, Barshim has cleared 240 cm or more thirteen times.

“Great to be back in Banska after some time. I remember in 2015 it was the first 240 of my career indoors there. I always remember great crowd support and loud music. Actually, the last time I competed indoors was in 2018, so it has been 6 years. I want to enjoy the competition and jump high. It will be an important step for me in preparation for the rest of the season,” Barshim commented.

Banská Bystrica High Jump Meeting Marks 30 Years with Global Athletics Elite

The men’s competition will feature prominent jumpers like Luis Zayas and Edgar Rivera, along with Andriy Protsenko and Norbert Kobielski. Ukrainian high jumper Protsenko has participated in the Banská Bystrica High Jump Meeting five times, finishing second twice and third in 2021. He has six medals from world and European championships. Polish athlete Kobielski, making only his second appearance, cleared 220 cm in his debut at Banská Bystrica in 2023.

The women’s competition promises to be equally thrilling, with Irina Gerashchenko, Eleanor Patterson, Angelina Topić, and Morgan Lake among the top contenders. Australian Patterson, the world champion in 2022, boasts the best personal record of 202 cm from the trio. Serbian athlete Topić is a rising star with a personal best of 197 cm and significant recent achievements. British high jumper Lake, with a personal best of 199 cm, will be making her second appearance after debuting in 2016.

Both competitions offer athletes a chance to meet entry standards for the World Indoor Championships 2024 in Glasgow, the European Championships 2024 in Rome, and the Olympic Games in Paris, as well as earn points for the World Rankings.

Ticket sales will begin in January, with a live broadcast planned by RTVS Šport. European Athletics will stream the event via their broadcasting platform.

So far, athletes from 54 countries have competed in Banská Bystrica, with notable performances in the last edition from Jamaica, Estonia, New Zealand, the Netherlands, Australia, and Switzerland. The BBL 2023 participants secured significant wins at the European Indoor Championships in Istanbul and had a strong presence in the World Championships in Budapest finals.

If they meet the required performance level, the best Slovak jumpers will also have the opportunity to compete.


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