Europe wins Continental Cup athletic meet


SPLIT, Croatia (AP) - The combined efforts of Andreas Thorkildsen, Blanka Vlasic and the team's women runners saw Europe overtake the Americas and claim victory in the Continental Cup athletics meet on Sunday.

Europe scored a total of 429 points to win the two-day meet, finishing just 9.5 points ahead of the Americas, which had led after the first day.

David Rudisha of Kenya clocked 1 minute, 43.37 seconds to win the 800 race - after breaking the world record twice in the past two weeks in Berlin and Rieti - but Africa still finished third with 292 points. It was Rudisha's last event of the season.

Asia-Pacific was fourth on 286.5 points. Norway's Thorkildsen, the current Olympic, world and European javelin champion, sealed victory in his event Sunday with a throw of 89.26 meters.

Croatia's Vlasic won with 2.05 meters in the high jump, although she failed in her latest attempt to break the 23-year-old world record.

Russian Tatyana Lysenko, current European champion, claimed the women's hammer throw with 73.88 meters. Yipsi Moreno of Cuba, the double Olympic silver medalist and double world champion, was third with 72.73.

Europe's runners were victorious in three women's competitions: Russian Aleksandra Fedoriva won the 200 in 22.86 seconds and her compatriot, Yuliya Zarudneva, took the 3,000 steeplechase in 9:25.46. Hind Dehiba Chahyd of France claimed the 1,500 with 4:19.78.

In men's 800, Rudisha was followed by Marcin Lewandowski of Poland, who came 1.44 behind.

The Americas team won five of 20 competitions: David Oliver, the bronze medalist from the Beijing Games, claimed the men's 110 hurdles, finishing in 13.11, ahead of Andrew Turner of Britain.

American Wallace Spearmon, the Olympic bronze medalist, took the 200 in 19.95, while Bernard Lagat won the 3,000.

The Americas team also won both the men's and women's 4X400 relay races. The men's team - Nery Brenes, Bershawn Jackson, Greg Nixon and Ricardo Chambers - finished in 2:59.0. Shericka Williams, Debbie Dunn, Nickiesha Wilson and Christine Amertil won their race in 3:26.37.

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