Heading into day two of the men’s decathlon, Canada’s Damian Warner and Pierce LePage found themselves sitting on top of the leader board – Warner in the gold medal position, LePage in silver – with 4,509 points and 4,380 points, respectively.
LePage, in his Commonwealth Games debut, came out strong in the 110-metre hurdles, with a time of 14.71 seconds, then registered a throw of 43.90 metres in the discus and a personal best 4.90 metres in the pole vault. The young Canuck would head into the evening session with the lead (6,889 points) and his eyes on the top spot of the podium. But a personal best in javelin (58.24 metres) and 4:58.00 in the 1500-metres wouldn’t be enough. LePage would have to settle for Silver and a personal best of 8,171 points.
With a comfortable lead following the 110-metre hurdles and discus, Warner entered the pole vault at 4.50 metres but failed to clear the bar on his third and final attempt. Sitting in sixth-place with 6,297 points heading into the evening session, the 2014 Commonwealth Games Champion decided not to continue the decathlon in Gold Coast.
On the track, Sage Watson registered a time of 55.43 seconds in Heat 1 of the 400-metre hurdles, good enough for third and a spot in Thursday’s final. Crystal Emmanuel (22.72 seconds), Aaron Brown (20.59 seconds) and Bismark Boateng (20.80 seconds – a season’s best) would wrap-up the morning session by advancing to their respective 200-metre semi-finals.
Wheelchair racer Diane Roy, the eldest athlete competing in athletics at 47 years of age, took to a wet track in the women’s T54 1500-metres alongside teammate Jessica Frotten. Roy used her experience, pushing hard with more than 400-metres to go to register a mark of 3:36.97, good enough for the Bronze medal. Meanwhile Frotten, caught in traffic with two laps to go, was involved in a crash near the finish line and did not finish the race.
Alexandre Dupont and Tristan Smyth followed the women in the men’s T54 1500-metres. Despite a wet track, the men went hard for the entire 1500-metres. With one lap to go, Dupont kicked it into high gear, beating out Australia’s Kurt Fearnley for the Gold medal. Smyth would cross the finish line seventh, with a time of 3:14.88.
In one of the strongest fields in women’s hammer throw at a Commonwealth Games, 2010 and 2014 Gold medallist Sultana Frizell knew she had her work cut out for her. With the rain coming down on Carrara Stadium, Frizell would register her best throw of 63.94 metres on her fourth attempt, which ultimately earned her a fourth-place finish. Jillian Weir also stepped inside the cage for Canada but failed to complete a successful throw after three attempts.
Here’s what the athletes had to say:
Alexandre Dupont (Gold) following the men’s T54 1,500-metre final
On his gold medal performance
“Everyone wants to go out and do that. This time I had enough; it’s the best finish I’ve ever had. I’m super happy with it.”
How does a gold medallist celebrate?
“I won’t celebrate too much tonight, I have to race the marathon on Sunday. After that, I’ll go out and have some fun.”
On how it feels to beat Australia’s Kurt Fearnley on his home soil
“Kurt is an icon in wheelchair racing. Tonight was his last race on the track. It was an honour to share the track with him.”
Pierce LePage (Silver) following the men’s decathlon
What does this silver medal mean to you?
“It means so much. My coach and I have gone through some ups and downs. Coming here, representing Canada, it’s something I will never forget. I’m super happy with how everything turned out.”
Looking ahead to Tokyo 2020
“The Commonwealth Games are definitely a stepping-stone for Tokyo 2020 and next year’s Worlds. I’m looking forward to both events.”
Diane Roy (Bronze) following the women’s T54 1,500-metre final
A wet track and slow race
“I was prepared for that. After 26 years of racing, I’ve seen it all; I was prepared for any situation. It was a slow race. I just wanted to maintain control and then with 400 to 600-metres left give it my all. I’m happy with my result.”
On her 3-year-old son cheering her on in the stands
“It was a proud moment. Tonight, was the first time that he was in the stands cheering me on. He might not understand, but he was clapping and cheering along with my sister. He’s just happy to see me race.”
Sultana Frizell (4th place) following the women’s hammer throw final
On her final throw, sitting in fourth
“I was really close and trying to get after it on my last one, because you just have to go after it. I think I actually threw it out of bounds, so it was a bit fat zero.”
“I’m going out on the Highland Games circuit. I’m going to take my mini kilt and [travel across] Canada chucking a whole bunch of things.”
Jillian Weir following the women’s hammer throw final
On her Commonwealth Games experience
“It definitely wasn’t the result that I wanted or was expecting. At the end of the day I gave it my all and I tried my best. I can walk away with my head held high. I’ll keep on training and give it another go in four years.”
Photo of the day, courtesy of Claus Andersen
Alexandre Dupont celebrates winning Gold in the men’s T54 1500-metres.
#LiveTheMoment – Social media moment of the day
What. A. Race. Alexandre Dupont finished strong down the stretch in the T54 1500m to claim another gold for @cgc_jcc at Carrara Stadium! #GC2018 #GoldCoast2018 #GoldCoastGoldRush pic.twitter.com/NmqZPkwKNl— DAZN_CA (@DAZN_CA) April 10, 2018
Top 8 finishes
Alex Dupont, T54 1500 metres – Gold
Mohammed Ahmed, 5,000 metres – Silver
Pierce LePage, decathlon – Silver
Tim Nedow, shot put – Bronze
Diane Roy, T54 1500 metres – Bronze
Sultana Frizell, hammer throw - 4th
Adam Keenan, hammer throw – 4th
Benjamin Thorne, 20km race walk – 4th
Natasha Wodak, 10,000 metres – 5th
Tristan Smyth, T54 1500 metres – 7th
Evan Dunfee, 20km wace walk – 8th
A look at what’s on tap tomorrow in Gold Coast:
7 p.m. (5 a.m. ET) – Women’s Long Jump Qualifications (Christabel Nettey)
7:15 p.m. (5:15 a.m. ET) – Women’s Javelin Throw Final (Elizabeth Gleadle)
7:45 p.m. (5:45 a.m. ET) – Women’s 3000m Steeplechase Final (Genevieve Lalonde)
8:05 p.m. (6:05 a.m. ET)– Men’s High Jump Final (Django Lovett/Michael Mason)
8:10 p.m. (6:10 a.m. ET) – Women’s 200m Semi-final (Crystal Emmanuel)
8:36 p.m. (6:36 a.m. ET) – Men’s F38 Shout Put Final (Kevin Strybosch/David Bambrick)
8:50 p.m. (6:50 a.m. ET) – Men’s 200m Semi-final (Aaron Brown/Bismark Boateng)
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