Day 2: OTC Elite qualify 3 through to finals
EUGENE, Ore. - Oregon Track Club Elite carried through their successes of day one into day two at the U.S. Outdoor Track & Field Championships in Des Moines, Iowa as three qualify into their respective finals on Sunday.
Ben Blankenship started the day winning his heat in the first round of the 1500m, with a winning time of 3:43.07. A top three finish was part of the criteria to qualify through to Sunday's final, along with the next three fastest times. Vincent Ciattei finished 4th in the same race but unfortunately missed out on qualification by just over a second.
In the semi-final of the women's 800m, Hanna Green comfortably qualified, running 2:01.37, finishing second in her heat which also automatically qualified her for Sunday's final.
In the men's 800m semi-finals OTC Elite had Harun Abda and Drew Piazza each competing for a place in the final. A top three finish in each race, plus the next two fastest times would qualify through to the final on Sunday. Abda finished 4th in the first semi-final with a season best time of 1:46.37, but had to wait until after the second semi-final to see if his time would be enough for qualification.
Fortunately for Abda the second semi-final was a tactical affair, with a slower finish time than the first race. Meaning that Abda's 1:46.37 was enough to qualify him to the final of the 800m. Piazza finished 7th in the second semi-final which was not enough for qualification.
OTC Elite's race schedule for Sunday (all times pacific):
4:02pm - Men's 800m final - Harun Abda
4:23pm - Men's 5000m final - Hassan Mead
5:12pm - Women's 800m final - Hanna Green
5:33pm - Men's 1500m final - Ben Blankenship