After having to sit through bizarre, obscure sports such as dressage and kayaking, track & field at the Olympics is finally here. The action kicked off on Friday and continues through the end of the Olympics. Here is a quick rundown of how some of the Oregon athletes have fared thus far.
Brianne Theisen-Eaton - Heptathlon
Brianne Theisen-Eaton, the former Duck and wife of fellow Duck Ashton Eaton, took home the bronze medal for Canada in the heptathlon yesterday in Rio. Theisen-Eaton overcame a rough first day where she was sitting in sixth place, but finished strong to take home the bronze.
Theisen-Eaton finished the competition with 6,653 points. She said she just had an “off day” on the first day of competition and didn't change anything going into the second day. Her throw of 155 feet, 4 inches in the javelin moved her into position for the bronze, a spot she locked up with her 800 performance, which she ran in 2:09.50.
English Gardner - 100 meters
While Brianne Theisen-Eaton was all smiles with her bronze medal, the same could not be said for English Gardner, who finished seventh in the 100 meter finals.
Gardner, who was a medal favorite heading into the Olympics, started slow after the gun went off and finished in 10.94 seconds. Gardner described feeling “sluggish” all day and during the race, clearly disappointed in her performance when she, like so many others, believed she would take home a medal.
Phyllis Francis - 400 meters
Survive and advance. That’s what Olympic qualifying heats are all about, and Francis did so with ease in the women’s 400 meters.
Francis won her first round heat in 50.58 seconds to advance to the semifinals, which was the fastest time of the day. Then, during Sunday’s semifinals, Francis surged from fourth to first in the final stretch to win her race in 50.31 seconds, the second-fastest 400 of her career.
The women’s 400 meter finals will take place tonight at 6:45 p.m. PT.
Galen Rupp - 10,000 meters
Galen Rupp had huge ambitions coming into these Olympics, wanting to medal in both the 10,000 meters and the marathon. Those hopes were dashed on Saturday night as Rupp finished fifth in the field while his Oregon project teammate Mo Farah won his second straight Olympic gold medal in the race.
There was some drama early as Rupp accidentally tripped Farah, sending the favorite down to the ground. However, Farah recovered quickly and gave his teammate the thumbs up to let Rupp know he was ok.
When it came time for the closing kick, Rupp didn't have the same strength we saw from back in 2012 when he finished second in the 10K for silver behind Farah. Many believe this is due to his marathon training, but Rupp wouldn't use that as an excuse.
Now, Rupp will spend the week recovering before running in the marathon next Sunday, which starts at 5:30 a.m. PT.