• Curtis Anderson

DAY EIGHT: OTC Elite's Gourley qualifies for 1,500m final

EUGENE, Ore. - Oregon Track Club Elite's Neil Gourley advanced to the final of the 1,500 meters at the 2019 IAAF World Championships in Doha, Qatar on Friday.

The reigning British indoor and outdoor 1,500m champion placed third in the first of two semifinal heats with a time of 3:36.69 to secure an automatic berth in Sunday's final.

OTC Elite's Ben Blankenship was not as fortunate.

Competing in the same semifinal heat, the 2016 Rio Olympian placed sixth in 3:36.98 - one spot removed from an automatic berth in the final.

There were still two spots open based on time, but after the second semifinal, Blankenship finished as the fastest non-qualifier - missing a berth in the 1,500m final by a mere 0.13.

It was one of the tightest 1,500m semifinals in World Championship history as the top 12 finishers were separated by 35-hundredths of a second - 3:36.50 to 3:36.85.​