The men’s long jump final awaits Fabrice Lapierre (NSW) after he soared 7.91m (w: +0.6) to progress to the medal round on day one at the 2017 IAAF World Championships in London (GBR).
Opening his account with 7.67m (w: -0.3), Lapierre hit his best mark with his second attempt to ensure his progression.
On the cusp of those advancing for much of the final qualifying round, the Beijing 2015 silver medallist faced an anxious wait before being confirmed as a finalist after Olympic champion Jeffery Henderson (USA) was unable to improve on his best mark of 7.84m.
“The first one was just getting used to the runway, and the second one I went for the qualifier. I think I would have got there had I hit the board, I didn’t hit the board on any of my attempts tonight, and if tomorrow I can do that then I’m in the mix for a medal,” Lapierre said.
“It was pretty nerve-wracking waiting, once I saw Jeff go up I thought I was no chance but I managed to sneak in. I just can’t wait to come back tomorrow. The crowd is awesome.”
Henry Frayne (Qld) joined Lapierre in the men’s long jump, with his best mark of 7.88m delivering a 14th place performance overall, missing the final by two positions.
The good news continued for Team Australia, Zoe Buckman (Vic) progressing to the semi-final of the women’s 1500m.
Competing in heat one, Buckman, who is coached by Nic Bideau, clocked 4:05.44 to place a gutsy 9th in her fast-paced 1500m heat, advancing to the semi-final on time as one of the six fastest times outside of those that automatically progressed.
Buckman’s run ensures that she has advanced to at least the semi-final on four consecutive occasions, progressing here in 2017, for the first time at the London 2012 Olympic Games, at Rio 2016, as well as a stunning 6th place in the final at the Moscow 2013 IAAF World Championships.
Linden Hall (Vic) and Georgia Griffith (Vic) also took to the track for the women’s 1500m, but did not progress after clocking 4:10.51 and 4:08.99 in heat two and three respectively.
On a night when Mo Farah (GBR) became an athletics legend, it was not the race for Patrick Tiernan (Qld), who placed 22nd in the final of the men’s 10,000m despite a promising preparation.
Set to compete in the men’s 5000m later these championships, he’s declared that he’ll be back.
“It’s really disappointing. I knew I was in good shape. It was just bad. It just started hurting and then I just didn’t want to get lapped. It was horrible. I’ve got the 5000m, though, so I’ll be back,” Tiernan said.
In other results on day one at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park:
- Liz Parnov (WA) cleared 4.35m in the women’s pole vault to place 8th in her qualification pool for the women’s pole vault. She placed 14th overall and will not progress to the final.
- Throwing 60.00m and 57.26m respectively, Benn Harradine (Qld) and Mitchell Cooper (Qld) took to the thrower’s cage for the qualifying round of the men’s discus throw. The duo placed outside the top-12 and will not progress to the final with Harradine finishing 21st overall and Cooper 28th.
To view and download results from day one of the IAAF World Championships, please click here.
Competition continues at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park tomorrow, with Damien Birkinhead (Vic, shot put), Steven Solomon (NSW, 400m) and Peter Bol (Vic, 800m) to lead the charge in the morning session before Lapierre joins Eloise Wellings (NSW, 10,000m) and Madeline Hills (NSW, 10,000m) for finals action in the evening.
For more information on Team Australia, please click here to visit the hub at athletics.com.au.