800m to have semis stage, rest of races all straight finals

By: AYUMBA AYODI

Men’s 800m race is the only event that will start at the semi-finals stage when the World Championships trials begin on Friday at Safaricom Kasarani Stadium.

Athletics Kenya vice president in charge of competitions David Okeyo said that the other 22 races will feature straight finals.

The first three athletes across the line and next two fastest finishers will qualify for the final of the two-lap race that takes place Saturday.

The two semi-final heats that have 18 athletes will wrap up the opening day’s programme at 2.10pm and 2.20pm respectively.

Okeyo disclosed that the mode of selection in the finals is still the same with the first two athletes across the finishing line gaining automatic qualification for the World Championships due August 22 to 30 in Beijing, China.

The third person to make the team will be decided by the panel of selectors said Okeyo. “It’s also good to note that those going through must have attained their respectively qualifying standard times. One can win but it will be useless without having the time.”

The team for the Africa Games slated for September 5 to 19 in Congo, Brazzaville will also be selected during the national trials where fireworks are expected.

Okeyo said the team for the World Championships will proceed to camp immediately on Sunday at Kasarani even though the athletes will be given a two-day break.

“But all must report on August 4 at Kasarani since we have little time,” said Okeyo who reminded all the athletes, who have been invited for the trials to come along with their traveling documents to enable them start visa processing.

Okeyo also called on the athletes to collect their running numbers from Kasarani at 8am tomorrow before the start of the programme where men and women’s walk race will open the two-day trials at 9.30am.

It will be followed by the women’s 10,000m final and men’s high jump final at 1pm respectively. The women’s 100m hurdles final and men’s triple jump final will go down at 1.40pm followed by women’s 100m final at 1.50pm and men’s 100m final at 2pm.

Olympic champion and world record holder, David Rudisha, who has season best of 1:43.56, will highlight the men’s 800m semi-finals that have Robert Kiptoo, who has the best time this season of 1:43.56.