Quiet night for Swiss athletes in Lucerne

Anita Brägger in action Keystone Archive

Lucerne's annual athletics meeting proved to be a generally disappointing affair for Swiss athletes on Wednesday, with only one bronze medal for the host country. Anita Brägger was the recipient after coming third in the women's 800m.

This content was published on June 28, 2001 minutes

The 28 year-old Swiss runner had set out to get over the finish line in under two minutes, to strengthen her resolve for this summer's world championships in Edmonton.

She came in at 2.00,15 missing her target time by a hair's breadth but still shaving off five hundredths of a second from her best time.

She was pipped to the post by Bulgaria's Tsvetelina Kirilova in first place and Brazil's Luciana Mendes in second.

In the men's 400m, the Swiss Olympian, André Bucher, came in fifth in a time of 47,04 seconds. Bucher, who came fifth in the 800m at the Sydney Olympics, began running the 400m at the beginning of the seaon. Wednesday's race was a test of whether he could make an internationally credible time.

He pulled it off with his best time of the season. "Everything is going to plan and I'm really geared up for the big races of the season," he said after the event.

Elsewhere though, Swiss athletes had a disappointing evening. The former world bronze medallist 400m hurdler, Marcel Schelbert, finished last in a time of 52,43. If he is to have any chance of making it to the world championships in Edmonton later this summer he has to beat or equal the 49,50 qualifying time.

It was similar fortunes for Anita Weyermann, the 1500m runner, who failed to clinch a podium place by finishing fourth in a time of 4.19,73, twenty seconds below her personal best. Like fellow team mate, Schelbert, she will also have to fight hard to qualify for the season's highpoint in Canada.

The Lucerne competition comes just two days before the start of the Golden League season in Rome. As a result many athletes stayed away including St Gallen 1500m runner, Sabine Fischer and Bern steeplechaser, Christian Belz.

swissinfo with agencies

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