Russia want that fourth Super League crown
Germany are the defending champions, Russia are the hosts and triple winners, while Belarus, Norway and Finland are the three promoted teams looking to stay up. There is no doubt the Super League of the European Athletics Team Championships in Cheboksary which starts tomorrow has thrilling possibilities throughout the whole of the table.
And within that search for points, 12 to the winner, one to the team that finishes last in each event, a series of outstanding clashes will take place.
Spain, France, Great Britain, Italy, Poland, Sweden and the Ukraine make up the rest of the Super League with squads sprinkling of Olympic and world champions and athletes leading the way in this year’s European rankings.
One of the most mouthwatering events is the men’s pole vault, which ordinarily should be the private domain of France’s multiple gold medallist Renaud Lavillenie.
It is, of course, no surprise that he is way out in front in 2015 with his sensational 6.05m at the end of May.
Lavillenie began the year by winning his fourth successive gold at the European Athletics Indoor Championships in Prague and he is the Olympic and European outdoor champion. One gold medal is missing from his major collection and that is the crown of world champion - an honour which goes to Germany’s Raphael Holzdeppe who triumphed in Russia in 2013 as he beat Lavillenie to glory in Moscow.