|Brianne Theisen-Eaton wins World Championship heptathlon SILVER
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Moscow – Brianne Theisen-Eaton of Humboldt, Sask., won World Championship silver today with a personal best of 6530 points in the seven-event heptathlon. Her silver comes two days after teammate Damian Warner of London, Ont., won bronze in the decathlon, an event that was won by Brianne’s husband, Ashton Eaton of the United States. Brianne and Ashton were married one month ago. For the first time in history Canadian athletes won medals in male and female combined events at the same World Championship. The last time this feat was accomplished on a world scale was at the 1999 World Championships in Sevilla, Spain when Dean Macey (decathlon, silver) and Denise Lewis (heptathlon, silver) of Great Britain both stepped on the podium.
"I’m at peace getting the silver knowing I gave it 110%. I watched Ashton the last couple of years winning all his medals and could only sit back and imagine what that felt like. After the 800-metres he just said to me good job and enjoy your victory lap." Theisen-Eaton adds, "Ashton and I talked about both being on the podium here, it was definitely our plan. We’ll probably just go home now, sit on the couch for a few days watching television and eating crappy food!"
Brianne is only the third Canadian woman to ever medal at a World outdoor Championship. Priscilla Lopes-Schliep won silver in 2009 while Perdita Felicien won gold (2003) and silver (2007). This is the first World Championship medal by a Canadian woman in an event outside of the 100-metre hurdles.
Canada’s previous best World Championship result in the heptathlon was by Jessica Zelinka of London, Ont., who placed ninth at the 2011 edition in Daegu, South Korea. The last time Canada won two medals at a World Championship was in Osaka, Japan in 2007 when Gary Reed and Perdita Felicien each won silver in the 800-metres and 100-metre hurdles respectively.
Brianne’s march to the podium
Other notable Canadian performances on day four of the 2013 International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) World Championship included Derek Drouin of Corunna, Ont., qualifying for the men’s high jump final. Drouin qualified for the final with a mark of 2.29-metres in Group B qualification. "That last clearance is the only positive I’m going to take away from qualifying. It’s over and I get a clean slate on Thursday." The 2012 Olympic Games bronze medalist adds, "I don’t want to get off the podium, once you’re on there you don’t want to leave. That’s the main goal in the final, see if I can move up a spot or two."
Mike Mason of Nanoose Bay, B.C., did not advance with a jump of 2.17-metres. "Definitely a tough day for me, I’m not happy with the result. I hurt my hamstring two and a half weeks ago, since then have been just trying to get back into jumping shape. I need to get back healthy, get back to training and hopefully this doesn’t set me back any further." Mason, "It was so painful in warm-up, wasn’t even sure I could do a full approach."
In the women’s 1500-metre semi-finals Nicole Sifuentes of Winnipeg, Man., placed ninth in the first semi-final in a time of 4:06.30, she did not qualify for the final. "I thought I was in a good position to start picking people off, but I shouldn’t underestimate the women out here, this is the World Championship. I felt confident coming in even if I knew it was going to be a really hard race."
Kate Van Buskirk of Brampton, Ont., ran a great tactical race to place sixth in a personal best of 4:07.36 in the second semi-final. Kate just missed advancing as the first five in each semi automatically qualified for the final. "I have mixed emotions, I honestly came in thinking if I just made the semis that would be great. Then I came into them and was thinking, no pressure, but I know I’m capable of making the final. I knew the pace was considerably slower than the first heat, I knew it would come down to top five. Closed as hard as I could." She adds, "My biggest takeaway is that I belong with the best in the world in this event."
Canadians in action on Day 5 of Worlds
||50km race walk – Final
||Hammer throw qualifying (Group A)
||1500m – Heat 3