Saturday marks the second-last day of action from the athletics track for Rio 2016, with Usain Bolt looking to close out his historic triple-triple with gold int the 4×100 relay. Join The Roar for live updates and commentary from 9:20am (AEST).
The session starts with the women’s 4×400-metre relay heats, where Australia field a strong team, featuring individual semi-finalists Morgan Mitchell and Anneliese Rubie.
The 4×400 really is an event in which anything can happen, there are so many variables that factor into the race. Australia is in the rare position of having three really good runners, the third being Jessica Thornton. The team is looking to fight for a medal, however, they must progress through the heats.
One of the highlights of today’s program is the women’s 5000 metres. Three Australians will line up in this event, Eloise Wellings, Genevieve LaCaze and Madeline Heiner Hills. All eyes, however, will be on 10,000-metre champion and current 5000-metre World Champion, Almaz Ayana.
Ayana kicked from the 5000-metre mark in last week’s 10,000-metre race and one by one, her rivals were left in her wake. She completely controlled her 5000-metre heat, dictating the race from start to finish and eventually winning by 100 metres.
One of Australia’s final medal hopes will also be in action during the session, with Alana Boyd competing in the pole vault final. She progressed safely through to the final, clearing the two heights that she attempted. She is definitely a medal contender, however America’s Sandi Morris and Greece’s Ekateríni Stefanídi are favourites.
The final track events are the men’s and women’s 4×100-metre finals, with both races shaping up as a battle between America and Jamaica. With gold medals in three successive Olympics in the 100 and 200-metre races, can the legendary sprinter get a stunning ninth track medal, with a third 4×100 gold in a row?