Jim Steacy of Lethbridge, Alta., and Damian Warner of London, Ont., won gold in the hammer and decathlon respectively while Kate Van Buskirk of Toronto, Ont., won bronze in the women’s 1500-metres.
Damian Warner captured the first medal of the evening with gold in the decathlon with a total score of 8282 points. Damian entered day two of decathlon in the lead and held onto it with a number of strong performances. He set a Games best and decathlon personal best of 13.50 in the 110-metres hurdles, launched the discus 41.31-metres, vaulted 4.50-metres, threw the javelin 61.96-metres and crossed the line in the 1500-metres in 4:45.43. “It’s my first major international victory!” commented Damian. “Last year at Worlds I was able to stand on the podium and do the victory lap with the flag. This time it’s the same thing but on top of the podium, what an awesome feeling.”
Jim Steacy also got to feel what it’s like to step on top of the podium by winning gold in the men’s hammer throw with a throw of 74.16-metres on his second attempt. “It’s unbelievable, this is a dream come true to finish off the season”, notes Jim. “It has been a long time coming, just amazing. I won the 2007 Pan American Games so it has been a long time. The crowd noise is a major part, the atmosphere is fantastic, and it was just so much fun. It is something I thrive on, the noise, the atmosphere, when the fans get engaged like that, it’s hard not to do well and as soon as you get a throw out you are just going for broke and see what happens.”
Kate Van Buskirk completed the medal hat trick with bronze in the women’s 1500-metres. The field was still bunched with 200-metres to go when Kate made her big move. Her official time was 4:09.41. “Coming into the stadium and seeing it packed like that, I mean, it was packed for the heats nevermind the final, you really can thrive off that crowd. This was the first time in my life that I wasn’t nervous, I wasn’t nervous last night, I wasn’t nervous today and I think I was just so amped up and excited and grateful for the opportunity to be here I am just really happy with how it all played out.”
Hot on Kate’s heels was Nicole Sifuentes of Winnipeg, Man., who finished fourth in 4:10.48.
After four events in the heptathlon Brianne Theisen-Eaton of Humboldt, Sask., leads the way with 3939 points, just behind her is Jessica Zelinka of London, Ont., with 3744. Brianne clocked 13.18 seconds in the 100-metre hurdles, leapt 1.84 metres in the high jump, threw the shot put 13.71-metres, and clocked 23.41 in the 200-metres. Jessica ran the hurdles in a Games best of 12.83 seconds, high jumped 1.69-metres, registered 13.65-metres in the shot put, and crossed the line in the 200-metres in 24.00.
Story from the Athletics Canada Website | Athletics.ca