Team USATF athletes move through Friday morning qualifying - IAAF World Championships
Provided by USATF
BIRMINGHAM, England - Save for some distance-running fireworks, Team USATF had a solid morning of first-round qualifying, while men’s and women’s combined events kicked off competition Friday morning at the 2018 IAAF World Indoor Championships at Arena Birmingham.
Team USATF’s dynamic duo in the women’s 400 both easily won their first-round heats to advance to Friday night’s semifinals. USATF champion Courtney Okolo (Carrollton, Texas) won heat 1 in 51.54; Shakima Wimbley (Fort Lauderdale, Florida) took heat 4 in 52.43.
The men’s 400 saw 2018 USATF Indoor champion Michael Cherry (Chesapeake, Virginia) win heat 4 with a relaxed time of 46.99, while teammate Aldrich Bailey (Arlington, Texas) was second in heat 5 in 46.77 as both men will compete in Friday night’s semifinal.
In the women’s 60m first round, 2018 World leader Javianne Oliver (Monroe, Georgia) was left in the blocks but managed to make up enough ground to place third and claim the final advancing position in heat 1 in 7.29. Destiny Carter (Raleigh, North Carolina) was very quick out of the blocks in heat 5, placing third in 7.24 to advance to Friday night’s semifinal as well. The final will be contested late Friday evening in a day that features all three rounds.
The morning’s lone fireworks came in the men’s 3,000m first round. Olympic and World Outdoor medalist Paul Chelimo (Colorado Springs, Colorado) appeared to move to the final of the men’s 3000 by running safe and controlled en route to a third-place finish in 7:49.34 in heat 2, but he was later disqualified for stepping on the inside of the track. In the first heat, Shadrack Kipchirchir (Colorado Springs, Colorado) got tangled up with 700 meters left, sending him to the back of the pack. He never recovered his form and finished eighth in 7:57.08. However, he was later moved to the final due disqualifications of three athletes.
Combined events midday results
After three of seven events in the men’s pentathlon, Zack Ziemack (Itasca, Illinois) was in fifth place overall with 2,483 points. He opened the competition by running 6.82 (922 points) in the 60m and had a season-best 7.21m/23-8 in the long jump (864). He threw 13.48m/44-2.75 in the shot put (697) to close out morning as Kevin Mayer of France leads with 2,714 points.
In the women’s pentathlon, Erica Bougard (8.07/1113 points) and Kendell Williams (8.08/1111 points) had the two fastest times in the 60m hurdles. Bougard (Byhalia, Mississippi) went on to clear 1.85m/6-0.75 in the high jump for 1041 points and throw 12.31/40-4.75 (682) in the shot put to sit in fourth place after three of five events with 2,826 points. Williams (Kennesaw, Georgia) cleared 1.76m/5-9.25 in the high jump (928) and threw 12.13/39-9.75 (670) in the shot put and was in 11th place with 2,709 points. Yorgelis Rodriguez of Cuba leads with 2,886 points.
Competition resumes Friday evening, with NBCSN television coverage kicking off Friday night as well. Live coverage is featured on NBC Sports Gold.
Click here for complete results from the World Indoor Championships.
NBCSN TV Schedule (All Times ET)
Friday, March 2: 8:30-10:30 p.m.
Saturday, March 3: 5:00-7:00 p.m.
Sunday, March 4: 4:00-6:00 p.m.
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Team USATF Medal Table
Vashti Cunningham, HJ (1.93m/6-4), 3/1