PAUL HESSION arrived in Lausanne yesterday to the news that Usain Bolt will not be competing in the 200m at tonight’s Samsung Diamond League meeting.
Bolt insisted that he is completely recovered from his injury, but on the advice of his doctor has decided to run the 100m rather than the 200m.
There is still a stellar field for the 200m at the La Pontaise stadium including the other two Olympic medallists from Beijing, 2004 Olympic champion, Shawn Crawford, and Walter Dix who was bronze medallist in the 100m as well.
Churandy Martina (Dutch Antilles) was also a finalist in Beijing and actually finished second but he was victim of an amazing turn of events in a race in which no fewer than five athletes broke 20 seconds.
After third-placed Wallace Spearmon was disqualified for an early line infringement the Americans protested that Martina stepped on the line as well and he, too, was disqualified.
Last year Paul Hession was disappointed to be sent out in the “B” race in Lausanne but he won his event in what was the third fastest time of the evening.
On arrival yesterday, however, it was confirmed that he was in the “A” race for tonight’s meeting.
“I’m looking forward to a good race,” he said. “This is another step towards Barcelona.
“This is the main run of the year in the build-up. Hopefully I’ll get a decent lane draw. I need to come off the bend behind just to get that feeling.
“I was pleased with my run in Cork on Saturday but it was very hard to get motivated because of the wind. It was over -3 and it was a crosswind so we got it the whole way. I would say the wind was worth well over half a second.”
Despite running the fastest time by a European this year (44.98 secs) in the Swiss town of La Chaux-De-Fonds on Sunday there was still no place for David Gillick in tonight’s 400m.
Instead he will compete in the Barcelona tomorrow night in the very stadium where the European championships will be held at the end of the month.
He will return to Dublin on Saturday and will compete in the 100m at the Woodies DIY national championships at Morton Stadium on Sunday.
“He is getting progressively better and we are very happy,” his coach, Nick Dakin, said. “We were very pleased with his run in Switzerland but, unfortunately, the field for Lausanne had already been filled.
Derval O’Rourke will compete in the 100m hurdles in Barcelona.
“The meet is on the same track as the Europeans so I am going to go there,” she said. “I like to go to the stadium before the event and see what the call room is like, have a look at the track, run on it and then I’ll fly in two days before the Europeans.
“I’ll fly back to Dublin on Saturday and run the nationals on Sunday.”
© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved