RIO DE JANEIRO—University Place resident Andrea Geubelle’s (left/photo courtesy USOC) quest to qualify for the finals in the women’s triple jump gets going Saturday morning at the Estádio Olímpico João Havelange at 5:40 am Seattle time (9:40 am in Rio).
She’ll be in Group A with 17 other athletes with Venezuela’s Yulimar Rojas the top seed with a season best of 49-3.5 (15.02m), the second furthest jump in the world this season, behind only reigning world champ and fellow countrywoman Caterine Ibarguen’s 49-4.25 (15.04m).
To advance to Sunday’s finals, Geubelle will need to finish in the top 12 in both groups and/or hit the automatic qualifying mark of 46-11 (14.30m), which would be a significant personal best for the Curtis HS graduate (46-6.25 indoors in 2013; outdoor personal best is 46-5.25/14.15m this season).
The projected weather for Saturday’s qualifying round is for sunny skies and temperatures around the mid-to-high 60s.
Track and field action at the Olympics got off to a raucous start as Ethiopia’s Almaz Ayana (above/photo courtesy IAAF/Getty Images) destroyed the world record in the women’s 10000 Friday morning, running 29:17.45, taking down Wang Junxia’s of China’s 29:31.78 from 1993.
The first four women across the line all broke the 30 minute barrier.
US Olympic Trials champ Molly Huddle finished sixth in an American record 30:13.17, just behind Iowa State alum and Bowerman TC member Betsy Saina, who ran a personal best 30:07.78.
In other highlights:
—Michelle Carter of Team USA set an American record in winning the shot put with a toss of 67-8.25 (20.63m) on her final throw to dethrone defending champ Valerie Adams of New Zealand, who threw 67-0 (20.42m);
—Defending champion Jessica Ennis-Hill of Great Britain leads at the break in the heptathlon with 4057 points. Oregon alum Brianne Theisen-Eaton of Canada stands sixth with 3871 points, while US Olympic Trials champ Barbara Nwaba, who is coached by Walla Walla native Josh Priester, stands 11th with 3777 points;
—In the first round of the women’s 1500, all three Americans—Shannon Rowbury, Jenny Simpson, and Brenda Martinez, easily advanced to the semis; in the men’s 800, two of the three US runners—Boris Berian and Clayton Murphy, moved on to the next round;
—All three of Team USA’s men’s 400 meter runners—Gil Roberts, LaShawn Merritt, and David Verburg advanced to the semis Saturday night. In the women’s 100, all three Americans, led by former Oregon standout English Gardner, advanced to Saturday’s semis.
—On the field, women’s hammer throwers Amber Campbell and DeAnna Price both advanced to the finals on Monday; men’s long jumpers Jeff Henderson and NCAA champ Jarrion Lawson advanced to Saturday’s final.
NOTE: USA Track & Field and the IAAF contributed to this report.