Emmanuel Korir nearly falls, comes back to win 800m at Pre Classic

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Kenyan Emmanuel Korir overcame getting tripped with 200 meters left to win the 800m on the first day of the Prefontaine Classic on Friday.

Korir was leading when Botswana’s Nijel Amos‘ spike clipped his leg. Korir stumbled, took six steps inside the rail and ceded the lead to Amos, the 2012 Olympic silver medalist.

But Korir overtook Amos on the final straight, winning in 1:45.16, .35 ahead of Amos. The race lacked double Olympic champion and world-record holder David Rudisha, who hasn’t raced since July 4 due to injury.

Korir, 22, ran the fastest 800m in the world last year but was eliminated in the semifinals at the world championships.

Full Pre Classic results are here.

In other events, world champion Sam Kendricks beat the last two Olympic champions in the pole vault, clearing 5.81 meters.

Surprise Rio Olympic gold medalist Thiago Braz of Brazil no-heighted at Pre for a second straight year in his first outdoor meet in 10 months. London Olympic champ and world-record holder Renaud Lavillenie didn’t fare much better, exiting at 5.71 meters for fifth place. Lavillenie still holds the top clearance in the world this year of 5.95 meters.

Rio gold medalist Thomas Röhler led a German javelin sweep, throwing a meet record 89.88 meters. World champion Johannes Vetter, who was second with an 89.34-meter throw, still ranks No. 1 in the world this year at 92.70.

In the two-mile, Ethiopian Selemon Barega upset Olympic 5000m silver medalist Paul Chelimo, outsprinting the American and clocking 8:20.01. Chelimo was second in 8:20.91.

The Pre Classic continues Saturday on NBC and NBC Sports Gold with streaming coverage starting at 2:50 p.m. ET.

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Beat a record? Win an island at track and field meet

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With no world outdoor championships or Olympics this year, the Paavo Nurmi Games in Finland might just hold the most coveted track and field prize of 2018.

An island.

The June 5 meet is offering the deed to one of the Turku Archipelago’s 20,000 islands to the man who wins the javelin — with one caveat. He must throw farther than the Finnish record of 93.09 meters (a little more than 305 feet).

“I hope the island is big enough to fit a sauna,” German Olympic champion Thomas Röhler said, according to the IAAF and meet organizers.

Röhler won this meet in 2016 and 2017, throwing 91.28 metres and 88.26 meters, respectively. If Röhler matches his personal best — 93.90 meters from last May — he will win the island.

As would world champion Johannes Vetter of Germany, who eclipsed the 93.09 mark at meets in July and August.

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