Olympic Champion Emmanuel Korir was always one of the more likely winners of the world title,
and he duly proved his class. With a steady run he gradually worked himself forward during the
second lap, and once he had taken the lead no one could challenge him.
The start of the race saw Moula take the lead, but he seemed not interested in running fast, so
Arop soon took over and they reached the bell in 52.04, a decent pace if not very fast. Moula,
Kinyamal and Tula were close behind, with the field still very close together. As they went
around the bend to the back straight Moula was losing ground and now it was Korir who was slowly
moving to the lead. He went past Tual who was finding it hard to stay close, then as they went
around the final bend, came alongside of Kinyamal. At this point the two Kenyans were following Arop,
but Kinyamal started grimacing badly - he may have picked up an injury, and from that moment he
could no longer challenge for a medal.
Korir had still something left though. He took over the lead from Arop, in his familiar style, his
head bobbing up and down, and his gold medal was never in doubt from there. Arop was struggling to
keep going, and from way behind Sejati put in a fast finish which took him to the silver. Wanyonyi
finished almost as fast, but he mistimed his efforts as he came from last to fourth, and so Arop
could hang on for the bronze.
1. Emmanuel Korir KEN 1:43.71
2. Djamel Sejati ALG 1:44.14
3. Marco Arop CAN 1:44.28
4. Emmanuel Wanyonyi KEN 1:44.54
5. Slimane Moula ALG 1:44.85
6. Gabriel Tual FRA 1:45.49
7. Peter Bol AUS 1:45.51
8. Wycliffe Kinyamal KEN 1:47.07
Eugene 800m semifinal reports
As is usual these days there were three semis. The first two would progress to the final and
two more would qualify on time.
This heat featured two strong Kenyans. It was Bodena who took the lead with Kinyamal and Bol
close behind. The pace dropped a bit towards the bell which was reached in 52.92. On the back
straight Bodena was fading as Korir moved gradually forward. Around the bend the two Kenyans
and Bol were leading, while the others were struggling to keep close. On the final straight
Korir had a bit of extra pace and finished fast while Kinyamal managed to stay ahead of Bol.
Langford made a strong late run but had left himself too much to do. Bol eventually made the
final as the second fastest loser.
1. Emmanuel Korir KEN 1:45.38 Q
2. Wycliffe Kinyamal KEN 1:45.49 Q
3. Peter Bol AUS 1:45.58 q
4. Kyle Langford GBR 1:45.91
5. Jesus Lopez MEX 1:46.17
6. Tony van Diepen NED 1:46.70
7. Elhassane Moujahid MAR 1:47.18
8. Tolesa Bodena ETH 1:50.55
As expected Kramer was in the lead after 200, with Kibet on his shoulder and Tual close behind.
After one lap they clocked 51.91, a bit faster than the first semi. Kibet soon took over the lead
and he was joined by García while Zahafi also moved forward. Around the bend though both
leaders started to struggle as Sejati came from the back and went past everyone. Only Tual managed
to go with him while Zahafi and García were unable to do so and Kibet faded entirely. At the
finish Sejati and Tual qualified. Both Rowden and Tecuceanu gained some ground on the last stretch
but they were not fast enough to qualify by time.
1. Djamel Sejati ALG 1:45.44 Q
2. Gabriel Tual FRA 1:45.53 Q
3. Daniel Rowden GBR 1:46.27
4. Catalin Tecuceanu ITA 1:46.31
5. Moad Zahafi MAR 1:46.35
6. Mariano Garcïa ESP 1:46.70
7. Andreas Kramer SWE 1:46.71
8. Noah Kibet KEN 1:47.15
Young Kenyan Wanyoni took the lead with Moula behind him. Surprisingly Arop started very slowly, but
as they approached halfway (which was reached in 52.06) he moved forward, and soon took over the lead.
On the back straight Moula appeared to be struggling while Arop slowly moved away and looked a certain
winner. But around 60 meters out Moula suddenly found another gear and streaked forward, leaving everyone
in his wake. Moula finished first in the fastest time of the three semis, with Arop qualifying as well.
Wanyoni held on for third and made the final as a fast loser. Robert fell just short of qualification.
1. Slimane Moula ALG 1:44.89 Q
2. Marco Arop CAN 1:45.12 Q
3. Emmanuel Wanyonyi KEN 1:45.42 q
4. Benjamin Robert FRA 1:45.67
5. Mark English IRL 1:45.78
6. Abdessalem Ayouni TUN 1:46.08
7. Álvaro De Arriba ESP 1:46.30
8. Abdelati El Guesse MAR 1:46.46
So in the final we will see three Kenyans, and surely they must be favorite to take one or more medals.
But they may have to find a way to deal with the two fast Algerians, especially with the lightning finish of
Moula. Arop and Bol look most likely to lead from the front, although the final does not promise to be
really fast. Finally Tual is the only one from the ten Europeans in the semis who managed to reach the final.
Eugene 800m heat reports
The first round consisted of six heats, so the first three of each heat would qualify and
six further athletes would qualify for the semis on time. The temperatures were quite high, so
athletes would probably want to save energy and not try for very fast heats.
Sad news just before the start of this heat: world leader Max Burgin had to pull out due to a minor injury.
That left Olympic Champion Emmanuel Korir as the big favorite, but he was taking it easy on the first lap
as Marc Reuther and Ermias Girma lead the field to a very slow 56.80. On the back straight Korir went to
the front, Reuther dropped back, which effectively left just three runners to fight for two places. On the
line Álvaro de Arriba and Elhassane Moujahid did just enough as Girma fell just short of qualification.
1. Emmanuel Korir KEN 1:49.05 Q
2. Elhassane Moujahid MAR 1:49.27 Q
3. Álvaro de Arriba ESP 1:49.30 Q
4. Ermias Girma ETH 1:49.36
5. Marc Reuther GER 1:50.75
6. Manuel Ataide TLS 1:58.91
- Max Burgin GBR DNS
This heat featured reigning World Champion Donavan Brazier. What kind of shape would he be in?
Initially Mariano Garcïa and Peter Bol took the lead with Brazier content to keep the curve
close behind. At the bell they recorded 52.24, much quicker than the first heat.
Into the final curve Bol went to the front, Benjamin Robert joined him while Kyle Langford had
a strong run from behind. On the final stretch Brazier could no longer sustain the pace. It was
a sad sight to see the current World Champion being outrun by so many others.
Bol eventually won the heat, Langford and Garcüa qualified as well. Robert struggled towards
the end and had to see Alex Amankwah going past as well. But it turned out Amankwah (who finished
in 1:45.92) had ran inside his lane during the first 100m and was therefore disqualified. This was
fortunate for Robert, who eventually took the sixth and last qualification spot of the fastest losing times.
1. Peter Bol AUS 1:45.50 Q
2. Kyle Langford GBR 1:45.68 Q
3. Mariano Garcïa ESP 1:45.74 Q
4. Benjamin Robert FRA 1:45.94 q
5. Abedin Mujezinović BIH 1:46.26
6. Donavan Brazier USA 1:46.72
7. Patryk Sieradzki POL 1:48.78
- Alex Amankwah GHA DQ
After the start of this heat many runners all wanted to go inside as quickly as possible, and there were
many collisions. It seemed as though initially Gabriel Tual and Brandon McBride bumped into each other, then
McBride bumped into Bryce Hoppel, who could barely stay on his feet, and finally McBride seemed to step on
the heels of Navasky Anderson, which saw McBride, one of the heat's favorites, tumble down on the track.
After all that Moad Zahafi was leading and reached the bell in a respectable 51.97. Zahafi showed that his
earlier results in this season were no fluke, as he held on seemingly with little effort. Behind him Tual
took second place and young Kenyan talent Emmanuel Wanyoni had to work hard but secured the third spot.
Eliott Crestan put in a late run but had mistimed his efforts as he the finish came too soon.
1. Moad Zahafi MAR 1:46.15 Q
2. Gabriel Tual FRA 1:46.34 Q
3. Emmanuel Wanyonyi KEN 1:46.45 Q
4. Eliott Crestan BEL 1:46.61
5. Bryce Hoppel USA 1:46.98
6. Mateusz Borkowski POL 1:47.61
7. Navasky Anderson JAM 1:48.37
8. Brandon McBride CAN 1:57.43
A heat without clear favorites that saw Brad Mathas take the lead with the group closely bunched and the
time at 400 of 54.46 indicated it would be a fast second lap. Adriá Ben soon took over with Sejati
and Van Diepen following while Mathas was going backwards. Sejati finished first, Abdessalem Ayouni put in
a strong finish and Van Diepen held on, so it was Ben who finished fourth and missed qualification. Talented
young American Brandon Miller was unable to get close to the top three and to the disappointment of the home
crowd went out as well.
1. Djamel Sejati ALG 1:46.39 Q
2. Tony van Diepen NED 1:46.59 Q
3. Abdessalem Ayouni TUN 1:46.59 Q
4. Adrián Ben ESP 1:46.71
5. Brandon Miller USA 1:47.29
6. Tshepo Tshite RSA 1:47.61
7. Brad Mathas NZL 1:47.70
In this heat Andreas Kramer was expected to take the lead and he duly did and took them out in 51.47. But he
could not quite keep that pace, and on the back straight Marco Arop and Mark English went past. Then Jonah Koech,
who was getting closer to the lead as well, saw a gap where there wasn't any, and squeezed himself through
between Jesus Lopez and the fading Kramer. As a result Kramer got a big push and only just managed to avoid a
fall. The pace up front was fast, with Arop in the lead and Lopez, English, Koech and Catalin Tecuceanu pressing
hard. Eventually Arop finished first, with Koech and Lopez close behind. But the pace of this heat was so fast
that English, Tecuceanu, Noah Kibet and even Kramer, who admirably recovered to record a decent time, all
qualified because of their fast times. Then the news came that Jonah Koech (who had initially run a PB of 1:44.62)
was disqualified because of his serious push. It completed a miserable day for the home crowd, who had earlier
seen Brazier, Hoppel and Miller all being eliminated as well.
1. Marco Arop CAN 1:44.56 Q
2. Jesus Lopez MEX 1:44.67 Q
3. Mark English IRL 1:44.76 Q
4. Catalin Tecuceanu ITA 1:44.83 q
5. Noah Kibet KEN 1:45.41 q
6. Andreas Kramer SWE 1:45.77 q
7. Yassine Hethat ALG 1:46.05
- Jonah Koech USA DQ
Having seen the first five heats Daniel Rowden knew that 1 time of 1:45 would certainly be good for qualification,
and he decided that he would make sure of a fast pace. At the bell he had a lead of several meters as he reached
the halfway stage in 50.81. It was only after 700 meters that others managed to come close, and Wycliffe Kinyamal
and Abdelatif El Guesse took over, only to be outdone by a stunningly fast finish by Slimane Moula. Rowden finished
fourth, but his time, as planned, was good enough for qualification.
1. Slimane Moula ALG 1:44.90 Q
2. Wycliffe Kinyamal KEN 1:45.08 Q
3. Abdelatif El Guesse MAR 1:45.25 Q
4. Daniel Rowden GBR 1:45.53 q
5. Tolesa Bodena ETH 1:45.81 q
6. Patryk Dobek POL 1:46.80
7. Zan Rudolf SLO 1:49.87
So some big names went out, notably current world Champion Donavan Brazier and (due to a fall) Brandon McBride.
All four Kenyans qualified, but it was an awful day for the USA as none of their four athletes could qualifiy.
Two quite convincing runs from two Algerians, and the North of Africa is represented as well by three Moroccans
and a Tunisian. Two athletes from Spain, France and Great Britain each, but Poland saw all three runners going out.
There are ten runners from Europe still in competition, contrasting to just two from the American continent
(one from Canada, one from Mexico).