Andre De Grasse sets CR to advance to 200m final


Andre De Grasse of Markham, Ont., ran a Canadian record of 19.80 in semi-final 2 of the 200-metres going stride for stride with Jamaica’s Usain Bolt all the way to the finish line. “He (Bolt) asked me why we were running so fast. My coach told me to race him all the way to the finish. Don’t let it be an easy race for him. Go out and try to tire him out tonight. I’m younger and we feel that I can recover for tomorrow’s final better than he will. I guess we’ll find out tomorrow. We’re just out there having fun & running fast.”

On day one of two of the decathlon, Damian Warner from London, Ont., earned a total of 4489 points and sits in third place overall in the competition. Warner opened his day by setting a decathlon Olympic Best in the 100-metres racing to a time of 10.30 to earn 1023 points. Tomorrow Damian will tackle 110-metre hurdles, discus throw, pole vault, javelin and 1500-metres. “Day 1 wasn’t what I wanted, I was hoping for a better long jump and shot put. My high jump surprised me because I wasn’t expecting to do that well. I’ve had a little knee issue, so I’ve rarely practiced that event this year. I still feel like I’m in it. I’m going to keep fighting and give it my all tomorrow. That’s the thing about the decathlon, the standings can change a lot from event to event. We’ll have a close competition tomorrow.

Phylicia George of Markham, Ont., placed 8th in the 100-metre hurdles final. “It was a very sloppy race, I hit the first hurdle, and then just kept hitting hurdles going down the track. It’s an indicator that my speed is really good right now. It’s been a couple of tough years, I went for broke, changed coaches and training groups. It wasn’t an easy decision. I wished I would have ran a better race, but I’m proud to have been in the final with everything’s that’s happened over the past year. I’m fast right now so now I get to transform myself into a sprinter, excited to run with the girls in the 4×100-metres relay.”


Matthew Hughes of Oshawa, Ont., raced to a 10th place finish in the men’s 3000-metres steeplechase final, improving Canada’s best ever finish in the event at the Olympic Games. Graeme Fell was 11th at the 1988 Games.

Mohammed Ahmed ran a smart tactical race in heat 2 of the men’s 5000-metres to advance to Saturday’s final.

Melissa Bishop ran the fastest time in the 800-metre heats, winning heat 4 in a time of 1:58.38. The semi-finals take place tomorrow evening.


100-metre hurdles Final

Phylicia George, 8th, 12.89

Men’s 200-metre semi-finals

Aaron Brown, 7th in semi-final 1, 20.37

Andre De Grasse, 2nd in semi-final 2, 19.80 CR Q

100-metre hurdles semi-finals

Phylicia George, 2nd in semi-final 2, 12.77 Q

Nikkita Holder, 7th in semi-final 3, 15.71

“Well I was moving (going fast), and sometimes when you’re moving you clip a hurdle, and it took me out. That’s what happens, you have to be crazy to hurdle, sometimes you fall. I’m not overly devastated, nobody wants to come to the Olympic Games to just participate, and I competed. Coming out here, making into the semis, I left it all out on the track, skin and all. I’m very proud of myself, I went for it.”   

3000-metres steeplechase final

Matthew Hughes, 12th, 8:36.83

“I knew there was a chance it was going to be fast, I planned on going in, stay near the back and then just start to pick off guys, I just didn’t have it. If anything this will just serve as motivation for the next four years. Two months ago just before Trials I strained my calf, I basically couldn’t walk for four-five days and had to take two weeks off of training. After about ten days I was able to walk jog, definitely set me back in my preparation. I was in 8:03-8:05 kind of shape, I hate to use that as an excuse, I didn’t let it bug me in the lead up to this, but it showed out there.”

Women’s 800-metre heats

Melissa Bishop, 1st in heat 4, 1:58.38

“(Asked about Caster Semenya) I’m focused on my race plan; I’m not focused on other athletes’ race plans. (Asked about her coach Dennis Fairall) I’ve been with Dennis for 10-years come September, Dennis is the most important person on this journey. He’s made me into the athlete I am, and allowed me to achieve my dreams. We’re staying focused, big three days coming up. (Asked about recovering from a fast heat) We’ve done really great training and have the experience from years past to get through the rounds, we have a really great support team with Athletics Canada.”     

Decathlon – Damian Warner

100m – 1st in heat 4, 10.30, 1023 pts, Olympic Decathlon Best
Long jump – 7.60m/X/7.67m, 977 pts
Shot put – 13.53m/12.62m/13.66m 708 pts
High jump – 1.92m: 0/1.95m: 0/1.98m: 0/2.04m: X0/2.07m: XXX 840pts
400m – 47.35 941 points
Day 1 total – 4489 points

Men’s 5000-metre heats

Lucas Bruchet, 19th in heat 1, 14:02.02

“It was tough, really hot, not something I’m used to racing in, especially over 5000m. I’m disappointed with my performance, I at least expected to be with the lead pack until they really got going, just wasn’t my day, I’m not going to make any excuses for it. I know I just snuck under the Olympic standard, but coming in I thought if I had a great race I could get in as a time-qualifier.”

Mohammed Ahmed, 6th in heat 2, 13:21.00

“I did what I needed to do, which is to qualify. All that matters is that I’m in the final. I knew with a lap to go at the bell I just needed to run a 60 second last lap and pass a few people and I would be in, and that’s what I did.”