17th August 2016

Farah And Butchart Into 5,000m Final

17 August 2016

As he did en-route to winning 10,000m gold on Saturday night, double Olympic champion Mo Farah (coach: Alberto Salazar) survived a trip in his 5,000m heat to safely advance to Friday evening’s final.

Farah was in a good position going down the backstraight on the final lap, however with 200m to go he was clipped from behind, but somehow managed to stay on his feet and finish in the top five.

“I’ve got such a long stride I find it hard you know – I always get tripped up or tangled up with someone but I managed to stay on my feet – it was quite nerve wracking.

“Emotionally you go through a lot and it’s a wake up now – the job ain’t done yet. I still have to recover, just lock myself in a room and just get ready for this race. I was a little bit tired today – not just because of the heat and having run 10k, but just mentally getting back in that zone. In the 10k I was on the edge – nothing was getting in my way and now I was a little bit distracted, so I need to get back in the zone and focus.”

The second heat containing Andrew Butchart (Derek Easton) and Tom Farrell (Mark Rowland) was run at a quicker tempo, with the field knowing that all five fastest loser spots were up for grabs.

It was the Scot, Andrew Butchart who made the most of the pace though, keeping himself near the front throughout. With the majority of the field still in contention, the in-form Butchart took it upon himself to go to the front with two laps to go, winding it up with a 61 second penultimate lap. Looking at home in the 33 degree heat, Butchart picked up the pace again upon hearing the bell, decimating the field to secure himself an automatic qualifying spot, finishing fifth in 13.20.08.

“It was hard work – it always is! I guess I knew I just had to make top five and I pushed for it and luckily I got it. I actually expected a few people to come past – I didn’t kick that hard, didn’t go flat out – it was comfortable and somehow they stayed behind me. On the home straight I could see there were only five of us away so I kind of relaxed in the home straight which was nice.

“My training’s been going very well, so I was confident going into it but to get top five against that calibre of field I’m happy!”

It was a bad day at the office for Tom Farrell, as he became detached from the main pack just before 3000m, running a lonely remainder of the race to finish 20th in 14.11.65.

“I’m disappointed. I’ve had a tough year and things haven’t been clicking, so I thought it was a big ask to make the final, but still I thought I’d have the reserves to do it. I had some good training through Font and Belo but I ran out of time maybe. I haven’t got any answers really – it’s an amazing experience on the Olympic stage but I’m an athlete and I came here for more, so I’m disappointed. I just didn’t feel like me.”

In the women’s 800m heats Lynsey Sharp (Rana Reider) looked cool, calm and collected as she controlled heat one to win in 2.00.83 ad book her semi-final spot.

“It was good out there – I was just trying to stay out of trouble and get clear runs in. You can’t do anything unless you make the final so you just have to stay out of trouble, but it was fine once I got out there. It’s nice to get out there but it’s also nerve-wracking!”

British champion Shelayna Oskan-Clarke (Jon Bigg) went in the second of the eight heats alongside Caster Semenya and Ajee Wilson, knowing she needed a top two spot to guarantee qualification. Putting herself in the all the right places, she didn’t quite have the strength to pass Semenya or hold off Wilson down the home straight, having to settle for third in 1.59.67.

Thankfully that was enough for a fastest losers spot, and she commented post-race:

“It’s ok. Well it’s not ok because I was outside the top two, but my preparation has been really good, I’m in really good shape and I feel really good.”

There was disappointment in the men’s hammer qualification as none of the British athletes in action qualified for the final.

Mark Dry was up first in Pool A, where he finished ninth with a best throw of 71.03m. He wasn’t the only casualty though as Polish world champion Pawel Fajdek, unbeaten in 29 competitions, also missed out.

A visibly upset Dry said: “We were just getting stuck, it was just hard to put it together. My hearts not 100% my mind’s not 100%. My body’s just not firing – there’s no excuses. I tried my hardest I don’t think it’s enough I’ve got to wait and see what happens in the second pool.”

In Pool B Dry’s fellow Scot Chris Bennett (Mick Jones) finished in 11th with a best of 71.32m, with Nick Miller (Tore Gustaffson) down in 13th thanks to his final round throw of 70.83m.

“The heat is just so warm out there, it’s about 36° and we don’t get much of that up in Glasgow so it’s been quite hard” said Bennett.  “It’s been a brilliant experience but it’s a job not done in my eyes.  I felt really good coming into today, training’s been really good and the throws felt technically alright today, there was just nothing there. It’s a missed opportunity and I’m very disappointed.”