The fastest race on earth has finally arrived. Usain Bolt look to defend his double Olympic 100m sprint title this morning in an action packed day in the track and field. Catch all the live highlights and results on The Roar from 9:30am (AEST).
The big 100 metre men’s final will be the main event of the day, but we will also see gold in the women’s triple jump and men’s 400 metres.
All eyes will be on the three semi-finals for the 100m, with all the big names expected to make a mark and send a message to their competition for the final.
Ben Youssef Meite of the Ivory Coast headlines the first semi-final after hitting a second best 10.03 in the opening round. China’s Xie Zhenye is the other top contender and one of his nation’s big medal hopes on the track.
In his usually laid back manner, Bolt actually clocked in at fourth fastest after the first round, but still managed a casual 10.07.
He’ll be up against Canadian medal hope Andre De Grasse and former Jamaican-turned-Bahreinian Andrew Fisher, all lining up in the second semi.
The third and final semi will contain Bolt’s biggest rival in not only this Olympics, but both of their careers, Justin Gatlin.
The 34-year old won gold in this event back at the 2004 games in Athens, before a drug ban ruled him out of the sport for four years, returning for the 2012 games in London to take bronze in a Jamaican-dominated final.
The other front runner for the final semi is the man that won silver ahead of Gatlin at the aforementioned 2012 games, Yohan Blake.
Enough about the 100m, here’s what else is on today.
Plenty of Aussies in action as we dive into the women’s 1500m semi-finals. Zoe Buckman and Linden Hall will both be in the first of the semis. Buckman qualified in ninth fastest across an initial field of 42.
22-year old Jenny Blundell also lines up in the 1500m, slotting into semi-final number two.
Morgan Mitchell heads the charge for the Australians in the women’s 400m semi-finals, after she picked up the eighth-fastest time across a field of eight heats and 57 runners.
She will be joined by Anneliesse Rubie as the only other Australian in the field. They’ll be hitting semis two and three respectively.
The two are in for a tough run though with Phyllis Francis from the USA and Oluwakemi Adekoya the ones to beat, being the only two runners to clock under 51 seconds so far.
Two other Aussies, Brandon Starc and Joel Baden, will be hitting the high jump mats earlier in the day for the men’s qualifying rounds.
The men’s 400m final will be the penultimate race of the day, with American LaShawn Merritt (won Gold in 2008) and race favourite Kirani James from Grenada the big contest for top spot.
James is defending his Olympic title from London 2012 and clocked in the fastest times in Round 1 and the semi-finals leading into today.
The women’s triple jump final rounds out the day’s competition, headed by Caterine Ibarguen of Colombia who is an overwhelming favourite to sweep the field.
Catch all the live highlights and results on The Roar from 9:30am (AEST).