“My coach has been telling me for eight months now, that I will win it. Last week I started believing him, and so it happened. He told me just go out there and run the pace you want to run. If they go with you, they will go with you, but if they don’t, then just win it alone. On the last lap, I slipped in the water, because I tried to jump like the Kenyans without touching the wood, but it did not work. Even then I knew I was going to win, I had 10 meters advantage, it was more than enough”.
“What a big surprise, Kallabis has come out of nowhere, he was not even among the European top 10 this season! Before the race I thought I had a good shot at the gold, although after the European Cup I had to stop training for three weeks due to a calf injury. Yes, I am a bit disappointed.”
“The race was easy, very easy for me. I liked the windy conditions, I never doubted that I would win. At 34k I pulled away from the rest of the field, just as I had planned before the race, and I not only bettered my personal best, but also broke the championship record held by my compatriot Rosa Mota. I am grateful to my coach Maria do Sameiro. I am extremely happy for being able to defend my title I had won in Helsinki four years ago.”
ARRON (4 x 100)
S. Felix: “I thought the difference between the Russian relay and us cannot be too big to overcome, when you have an anchorwoman like Christine. We knew that after the first three legs the Russians will be far ahead of us, but the difference seemed enormous. I can tell you, no women has run before like Christine. She’s one of a kind.”
Christine Arron: “You might ask if I had the confidence in winning when I took the baton from Felix with six metres behind Privalova. Yes, I did, all I was thinking was the gold medal. Right now I feel I am in the shape of my life.”
“For the last month both my coach (Luciano Gigliotti) and I have believed that this gold was going to be mine. Luciano said to me that he could see victory in my eyes before the start today and I my heart also told me that this medal would be mine.
After 37 kilometres I knew that I would beat my compatriots (GOFFI and MODICA) to the finish. I was very surprised that there was no strong Spanish challenge. For me the only threat except for my fellow Italians was going to come from Spain but nothing happened. Today, I have become a marathon runner and may be now Sydney.”
“This is great; finally I have won something big. It was tough with all the lane 1 draws in the semi-finals and stuff, but I managed. I will not run the 400m again, that is way too long, plus Iwan (Thomas) owns it, so why should I even try. I got what I came to Budapest for, so that’s good”.
“(Smiling and laughing) I am the happiest woman in the whole world, and there is no doubt about that. Tereshchuk was very strong with a 100meters from the end, but then I caught her. My problem was that I could not run in the curve, it is not easy to take the hurdles, but luckily everything was fine. Nothing could make me happier right now”.
“It was a crazy race, the craziest of my life so far! Up to 120 metres I was feeling wonderful, I thought, I had the gold in my pocket. And then suddenly at the beginning of the final stretch I felt a sharp pain in my right hamstring, and it was then that Privalova pulled away. The silver is not bad, but after last year’s gold at the World Championships it’s a little disappointment.”
“However strange it might sound, I am not really satisfied. Of course, to win the gold is a fabulous feeling, but I missed my personal best by 9 centimetres, I reached as little as 4.31m,while I wanted to clear 4.45 to 4.50. Anyway, our country is in a state of joy, as my gold medal is the third in Budapest so far for the Ukraine. I am looking forward to a big party in Kiyev, in my hometown!
“It was a great competition but it would be, as it’s my first big time gold. I always seem to medal but not get the gold, now all has changed. This is my best result this outdoor season.
I would like to congratulate Dalton (Grant), he was the surprise package in today’s competition and what a great competitor he is!”
“I would like to thank all the fans here, because they were fantastic. The Greeks, the Hungarians, everybody. I will hope to be there in Seville next year and do just as well, but we we’ll see later. Sorr y my English is not very good.”
“I am more than happy to win the gold medal. I knew I had a good chance as I had the best European time this season. When we started the last 100 metres, and Fermín was far behind me, I knew, I had won it. "
“I did not think I would take silver, or any medal at all. In a field where there is Cacho and another Spanish star, who can hope for a silver? Although I won the indoor European Championships in Seville, this silver is by far the greatest result of my career. I am sure I will be given a hero’s welcome when I get back to Lisbon.”
“(Pointing to his torn right shoe) – “Look, what they have done to me! Somebody stepped over my foot right at the time I was beginning my final kick, with 100 metres to go. Nevertheless, I was not in top shape, I also had an injury earlier in the season. The pace was too slow, which was also bad for me. I must say, at this stage of my career a bronze is nothing to be ashamed of.”
“A big time medal at last! This is the great moment in my career.
Down the home straight I looked back. I was so afraid that some one would finish late and strong and deny me the silver. I was tired but would not let myself be beaten.
I prepared myself for Budapest with a single aim and now I feel that in my running I’m flying.”
“I cannot tell you how happy I am, since this has been the first Estonian gold medal at a track and field European Championships since 1938! In the beginning I felt strong, and hoped for a medal. After the pole vault I was sure of at least the silver, and after the javelin I knew I had won. I know, I am the most popular citizen of my country, but no matter how many girls come to the airport to greet me, I will be faithful to my fiance, Kadri, who is pregnant!!”
“I’m so shocked to have smashed the Polish record. Even before the race I believed that Maschenko was the firm favourite and so did the public in the stands.
This year I have been injured (left thigh. Injured in May 1998) and missed so much training. So I came to Budapest just to fight for a place in the final. Everything else I achieved would be a bonus and what a bonus I have achieved tonight!"
“ I feel very, very bad. I wanted to win the race, and my personal best (48.06) would have been enough. When I tried to shift into fifth gear on the last 50 metres, my legs just would not carry me. No, I did not see that the Polish guy was in front, I just felt that something was going terribly wrong. That is all I can say, except that I am very disappointed. "
“You might ask how I managed to beat the rest of the field by roughly two metres. The answer is so simple, I am just so strong!
Two years ago in Atlanta I was fourth, last year in Athens I was second and so my progression is healthy. "
“Before the start I didn’t belive this result was possible. Certainly, when we started the walk so fast, I thought my chances would not be so good. However, we succeeded and we have written another golden page in Italian athletics history.”
“Just as I said yesterday, one needed to throw above 82 metres to win the gold. I am lucky to have thrown that far, because if I had not, I am sure, Balázs would have made it. "
“I thought I could have done better in the last 20 metres but otherwise I’m very pleased, who wouldn’t be?! In next year’s Worlds (Seville) I hope that the Greek sprint relay team will now be good enough for silver or Bronze.”
“I dedicate the gold medal to my wife, Olga, and my son, Oleg. I am so very happy, that after getting so many silver and bronze medals at different competitions finally I have been able to climb to the top of the podium. I expected a gold deep in my heart.”
“I expected to run this fast (new national record 10.87) today. Arron was certainly the favourite in the eyes of the public but the whole field was strong. I was sure that Privalova (2nd) would be in good form. She always times her season very well for the major championships. My season was also aimed at this one goal (Budapest ’98).”
"I am very happy to win the first gold medal at the European Championships. It was a tough race, it was hot out there, and Fadejevs was great. Somehow I managed to overtake him in the last few hundred meters, and then never looked back. I am very happy".
"After the semifinal I thought I had a good shot at the gold medal with a good start. Ironically, I got the gold and the European record as well, even with a fairly poor start."
"After such a long injury and an operation, I really could not have asked for more but this."
"I guess it's time for a Guiness or two now,"
"I thought as I came off the last bend that I had comfortably qualified. This makes it double hard for me to take."