Summer Universiade athletics (Aug. 17): Canadians reach multiple finals
SHENZHEN, China (CIS) – While Canada has yet to win a
medal in athletics at the 26th Summer Universiade, the Canadians
are putting themselves in position to reach the podium, as 10
more athletes qualified or competed in finals on Wednesday.
At the Main Stadium of the Universiade Sports Center Wednesday evening, the spotlight was on Dontae Richards-Kwok of Mississauga, Ont., who reached the 100m finals after finishing fourth in his semifinal in the afternoon with a time of 10.35. Unfortunately, the York University student was forced, due to an apparent hamstring injury, to pull up during the finale, crossing the line eighth in a time of 10.60.
“[Richards-Kwok] had a great meet, unfortunately he had a slight injury right at the end of the race and it impacted his final placing,” said Team Canada head coach Claude Berube. “But we are getting a lot of athletes into finals, so far it has been a very encouraging meet.”
In the women’s 400m, Jenna Martin of Bridgewater, N.S., and Amonn Nelson of Calgary both qualified for the final, scheduled for Thursday night. Martin finished second in her semifinal with a time of 52.97, while Nelson was third in her semi in a time of 53.06.
“That’s huge,” said Berube of both Martin and Nelson making the final. “It is a very strong field here in the 400m, and the fact that we have two girls in the final, particularly these two who will be going on to compete at the IAAF world championships, it’s great preparation for both.”
West Vancouver’s Helen Crofts will run tomorrow night in the 800m final after placing fourth in her blistering semifinal with a time 2:02.98. Annie LeBlanc of Repentigny, Que., finished seventh in her semi in a time of 2:06.53 and will not advance.
“This is probably the best race Helen has run in a while,” said Berube. “It was a great tactical race, the women’s 800m is such a deep field, therefore making the final is a real feather in Helen’s cap.”
In the women’s 3000m steeplechase, Geneviève Lalonde of Moncton grabbed the last qualifying spot for Friday’s finals, finishing seventh in her heat in a time of 10:00.29. Chantelle Groenewoud from North Vancouver missed qualifying with a time of 10:36.40.
In the 400m hurdles, Gabriel El Hanbli from Repentigny, Que., finished fourth in his heat to qualify for the semifinals with a time of 50.92. Ottawa’s Michael Robertson finished seventh in his 400m semifinal with a time of 47.52 and will not advance to the final.
In women’s pole vault, both Canadians advanced, with the Quebec City duo of Melanie Blouin and Gabriella Duclos-Lasnier each clearing 4.15m to reach the final.
In javelin, Kyle Nielsen of Langley, B.C., qualified for the final, hitting 72.17m on his second attempt. Heather Steacy of Lethbridge, Alta., also advanced in the hammer throw with a toss of 63.85m in her heat.