The semifinal heats for three track and field events were held Tuesday night, the women’s 200 and the 400 hurdles for both the men and women, and USA Track and Field was represented in each of them.
Two Americans qualified for the 200 final, led by 100 meter silver medalist Tori Bowie. Bowie’s time of 22.13 seconds was second-fastest among the eight women who qualified for the final, with only Dafne Schippers of the Netherlands (21.96 seconds) running faster. Also running a 22.13 was Jamaica’s Elaine Thompson, who took gold in the 100.
Joining Bowie and Schippers in the final is Deajah Stevens, who at 22.38 seconds ran the sixth-fastest 200 of the semifinal heats. Jenna Prandini failed to qualify for the final, posting a time of 22.55 seconds.
The U.S. will have two runners in the women’s 400 hurdles final in Dalilah Muhammad and Ashley Spencer. Muhammad’s time of 53.89 seconds was the fastest of the qualifying heats, and she was the only runner to post a time below the 54 second mark. Spencer finished her heat in 54.87 seconds, which is good for fifth among the eight qualifiers for the final. 17-year old Sydney McLaughlin wasn’t as fortunate, as she failed to qualify after running a 56.22 in her heat.
In the men’s 400 hurdles Kerron Clement was the lone American to qualify for the final, posting a semifinal heat-best time of 48.26 seconds. Finishing third in his heat, Byron Robinson (48.65s) missed out on qualifying by time by one one-hundredth of a second. Also qualifying for the final was Puerto Rico’s Javier Culson, who took bronze in the 400 hurdles in London.
Lastly, two Americans qualified for the next round of the women’s long jump in Brittney Reese and Tianna Bartoletta, with teammate Janay Deloach just missing out on doing so. Ivana Spanovic recorded the longest jump of the first round of qualifying (6.87 meters), and Russia’s Darya Klishina advanced as well. Due to the ban of Russian athletes as the result of a doping scandal involving multiple sports, Klishina was the only athlete who was able to gain clearance to compete in Rio.