The Ingebrigtsen brothers triumph at the EC

Ingebrigtsen berlin brothersNorway's gold medal winner Jakob Ingebrigtsen, left, and silver medal winner Henrik Ingebrigtsen celebrate after the men's 5000-meter final at the Euro Champs in Berlin. Photo: AP

The Ingebrigtsen brothers triumph at the EC

Jakob Ingebrigtsen won his second European gold medal in as many days as he ran into victory at the 5,000 metres flat in Berlin on Saturday. His elder brother Henrik secured the silver medal.


On Friday, Jakob Ingebrigtsen cruised into a sensational gold medal on the 1,500 metres. The 17-years-old is the youngest gold medal winner in a men’s event at an athletics championship ever.

On Saturday he followed up the success with a show of force on the 5,000 metres. The teenager came in alone and could afford to greet the spectators even before crossing the finishing line.

– Honestly. I’m speechless. This is totally crazy. Enormous, said the golden boy when he was interviewed by the stadium speaker right after the finishing line.

– This gets almost too dumb. I think this is a dream that has come true for me and Henrik alike, Jakob continued when he reached NRK.

Obliterated everybody

Big Brother Henrik was full of adrenaline and particularly pleased with the way the brothers squashed the competition.

– When two guys from Sandnes end up at the top of the podium. What to say? Oh my God, he said – and continued:

– This was not the duel from two years ago when a couple of millimetres was the decider. Today, we were convincing. We not only outsprinted the others – but ran them into the ground. We are at the same wavelength and both of us are in good shape.

From the sidelines, a proud father and trainer, Gjert Ingebrigtsen, followed it all with a big grin on his face.

– Fantastic. Henrik obtains a medal in his fourth championship in a row. That’s crazy. Jacob wins two gold medals in a senior championship, he emphasises.

Big expectations

The last brother, Filip, who had to bypass the 5,000 meter due to an injury, was sitting in the stands.

– It can not be done any better. It is so out of this world. The low speed was a gift begging to be unwrapped for both of them. They are in such a good shape that it cost only a few calories to follow the field. That both are rewarded is as good as it gets, he tells NRK.

After Friday’s super run, both big brother Henrik and father Gjert believed that 17-years- old Jakob was at least as good as that on the 5,000 metres – if not better. That naturally led to big expectations ahead of Saturday’s finals.

The gold medal winner from the 1,500 metres was at the same time going through a hectic program in the hours following Friday’s triumph. It was, therefore, a great deal of speculation as to how much that would diminish the young man’s stamina.

The teenager seemed totally unaffected.

Peak performance

Big brother, Henrik Ingebrigtsen, entered into Saturday’s final with the best time on the 5, 000 meters of any European this year. That was achieved way back in April, and in the last competitions on the distance, Henrik’s performance was not up to par.

On Saturday he, however, showed himself from his best side.

After the finish, a weird and wonderful victory lap involving a Norwegian flag followed at the Olympic Stadium in the German capital. In the stands, family and friends stood up to cheer the brothers around the stadium built for the 1936 Olympic Games.

The Norwegian President for athletics predicted a walk in the park for the gold medal

European Athletics President, Svein Arne Hansen, predicted before the 5,000 metres in Berlin that Jakob Ingebrigtsen was going to figuratively run rings around the competition.

Former President of the Norwegian Athletics Association, now President of the European Athletics Association, Svein Arne Hansen, was ecstatic.

– When you see a 17-years-old play with the opposition and everyone in the field tries to beat one single boy. This is historic, he tells NRK – and continues:

– It has never before happened that we have taken two medals at a similar distance, except perhaps in cross-country skiing. There is an enormous competition here. This is the world’s biggest sport and they do it on the perhaps biggest evening in athletics ever. There is nobody here that misses Usain Bolt. No one.

– There are 65,000 spectators here and they go berserk. They do that for a teenager from Norway, Hansen concludes.


© NTB scanpix / #Norway Today