Road To The Olympic Games

Track and Field·Roundup

Canadian women to run for world gold in 4x400-metre relay

Running anchor in the women's 4x400-metre heats at the track and field world championships, Sage Watson helped the Canadian team reach the finish line third in a season-best three minutes 25.86 seconds and qualify for Sunday’s final at 2:15 p.m. ET.

Watson, Brown, Stiverne, Price post season-best 3:25.86 ahead of Sunday's final

Sage Watson, running the anchor leg, shone Saturday to lead the Canadian women's 4x400-metre relay team to the world championship final, scheduled for Sunday at 2:15 p.m. ET. (Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)

Sage Watson and her Canadian relay teammates will get a chance to build on their Pan Am silver-medal performance.

Running anchor in the women's 4x400-metre heats at the track and field world championships on Saturday, she helped Canada reach the finish line third in a season-best three minutes 25.86 seconds and qualify for Sunday's final at 2:15 p.m. ET.

Alicia Brown ran the opening leg for the Canadians at Khalifa International Stadium, followed by Aiyanna-Brigitte Stiverne and Madeline Price.

"I think this is a really strong foursome," Brown, a member of the Canadian 4x400 squad that finished fourth at the 2016 Olympics, told Scott Russell of CBC Sports.

Stiverne joined Watson in helping Canada set a then-season-best 3:27.01 in the Pan Am final at Peru on Aug. 10.

Price, 24, is the newcomer and likes the team's prospects while Watson said the Canadians have plenty of energy and "we're ready to give it tomorrow."

WATCH | Canadian women run season-best to get to 4x400 relay final:

The Canadian women's 4x400 metres relay team moves on to final with a season's best time of 3:25.86. 6:42
In May, Watson, Brown and Price clocked 3:28.21 to place fourth at the IAAF World Relays in Japan.

Jamaica won the first of two heats Saturday in 3:23.64, followed by Poland in 3:25.78.

The United States took the other heat in a year world-leading 3:22.96, with Great Britain and Ukraine securing the other automatic berths. Belgium and the Netherlands round out the field of eight.

WATCH | Canada's men fail to advance to final despite season-best time:

Despite setting a season's best time of 37.91 seconds, Canada's men's relay team featuring Gavin Smellie, Aaron Brown, Brendon Rodney and Andre De Grasse failed to qualify for the final at the world track and field championships. 4:22

4-time Canadian champ lowers PB in 5,000m final

Andrea Seccafien set her second personal-best time in three days, completing the women's 5,000-metre final in 14 minutes 59.95 seconds to finish 13th in the field of 15.

"It would have been nice to place a bit higher but we're all so close at this level that if we ran the race again it would be a different outcome," the 29-year-old said. "I'm pleased with my first [world] final."

"The race split into three groups midway and Andrea was in the third group but never lost complete contact and fought hard in the last mile when fatigue and the heat would have been a big factor," said CBC Sports analyst Dave Moorcroft, who set a men's world record in the 5,000 in 1982 when he clocked 13:00.41.

"I thought she showed real courage and determination to fight hard in the last few laps and be rewarded by a fast time."

Hellen Obiri won in 14:26.72, a championship record, and nearly one second ahead of Kenyan teammate Margaret Kipkemboi (14:27.49). Konstanze Klosterhalfen of German was third in 14:28.33.

WATCH | Andrea Seccafien runs under 15 minutes for PB:

Canada's Andrea Seccafien runs a person best time of 14:59.95 in the 5,000 metres final. 6:42
On Wednesday, the Guelph, Ont.-born runner shaved nearly four seconds off her PB when she stopped the clock in 15:04.67. Her previous best was 15:08.59, set on July 22, 2017 in Heusden, Belgium.

Seccafien recovered from a mysterious foot injury in 2015 to meet the 2016 Olympic standard and was the top Canadian at her Summer Games debut, placing 20th in Rio.

Canada's Nedow 9th in men's shot put final

Tim Nedow of Brockville, Ont., had a best throw of 20.85 metres to place ninth in the men's shot put final, his best result in four world championships appearances.

The 28-year-old finished 24th in 2013, 20th in 2015 and 16th two years ago, matching Nedow's standing at the 2016 Olympics in Rio.

"I didn't know it was going to be 22.90 for the bronze," said Nedow, the 2018 Commonwealth Games bronze medallist. "I'm a little disappointed. I came in hoping to have around 21 metres and close to a personal best and I would have been super happy."

Nedow, whose 21.18 PB came in April at Long Beach, Calif., qualified for Saturday's final on his third and final attempt in the qualification round with a throw of 20.94.

It was a 1-2 American finish, with Joe Kovacs capturing gold with a throw of 22.90 to set a championship record. Ryan Crouser was close behind with a 22.90 PB while New Zealand's Tomas Walsh (22.90) rounded out the podium.

"Those are my buddies and they're going on world-record pace," Nedow said. "It was fun to watch and hopefully next year I'll push them to 23 [metres].

"This was probably the best world championships for me health-wise and I want to keep that going into Tokyo [and the Olympics next summer]."

Hurdler Phylicia George not 'race sharp' in 100m heats

Canadian hurdler Phylicia George's slowest time of the season cost the two-time summer Olympian a spot in the women's 100-metre semifinals in Doha.

The 31-year-old who lives in Markham, Ont., reached the finish in her heat in 13.49 seconds after clocking 13.31 to win a third Canadian title in July. George arrived in Qatar with a 12.90 season best.

Canadian hurdler Phylicia George posted a time of 13.49 seconds in Saturday's 100-metre heats and failed to finish among the 24 qualifiers for the semifinals on Sunday at the track and field world championships in Doha, Qatar. (Martin Meissner/Associated Press)
On Saturday, 20 of the 24 qualifiers dipped under 13 seconds.

"It's not the race I wanted [or] was hoping for," said George, whose best finish in four world championships was seventh in 2011 at Daegu, South Korea. "I just wasn't as race sharp as I would have liked to have been.

"I'm just finding my rhythm again because I didn't hurdle at all last season because I did [two-man] bobsleigh and won a [bronze] medal for Canada [in Pyeongchang, South Korea]."

Olympic champion DQ'd for false start

George told Scott Russell of CBC Sports that she's planning a return to sprinting next season in the 100 and would like to be part of a Canadian women's 4x100 relay team on the track next summer.

"We're going to sprint, we're going to hurdle, we're going to relay, we're going to do it all," said George, who has her sights set on competing at another Olympics.

Olympic champion Brianna McNeal was disqualified from Saturday's heats for a false start.

The 28-year-old American, who is also the 2013 world champion, disputed the referee's call until she was shown the video replay in which she could be seen moving off the blocks before the starting gun had sounded.

Devastated, McNeal dropped to her knees and wept. She picked herself up slowly, walking off the track in tears.

Ethiopia's Desisa wins gold in men's marathon

Lelisa Desisa ended an 18-year wait for Ethiopia when he triumphed in a sprint finish against compatriot Mosinet Geremew to win a midnight marathon at the World Athletics Championship on Sunday.
 
Desisa, last year's New York marathon winner and world silver medallist in Moscow six years ago, became the first Ethiopian to win the title since Gezahegne Abera in 2001.
 
Geremew, four seconds behind, took silver and Amos Kipruto of Kenya the bronze.

WATCH | Ethiopia's Lelisa Desisa sprints to the finish during men's marathon:

The Desisa led a 1-2 Ethiopian finishes as he and fellow countryman Mosinet Geremew won gold and silver in the midnight marathon at the Track and Field World Championships. 1:29

As with the other road races during the championship, the race started just before midnight to escape the worst of the heat and humidity.
 
Conditions were less brutal than previously although it was still 29.09 C with 48.6 per cent humidity at the start, organizers said, and 55 of the 73 starters completed the course — the last, Nicolas Cuestas of Uruguay, finishing half an hour behind the winner.

Canadians John Mason and Berhanu Degefa finished 36th and 45th. 

CBC Sports has exclusive live coverage of the 2019 World Track & Field Championships from Sept. 27-Oct. 6. Visit the stream and broadcast schedule, You can also add the complete event schedule to your calendar.

About the Author

Doug Harrison has covered the professional and amateur scene as a senior writer for CBC Sports since 2003. Previously, the Burlington, Ont., native covered the NHL and other leagues for Faceoff.com. Follow the award-winning journalist @harrisoncbc

With files from Reuters

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