Edmonton’s Marco Arop advances to men’s 800m semifinal at World Athletics Championships

Click to play video: 'Middle distance Edmonton track star on the rise'
Middle distance Edmonton track star on the rise
Marco Arope was born in Sudan but grew up in Edmonton. The 6'4" 19-year-old is covering a lot of ground in a short amount of time. John Sexsmth reports – Jul 16, 2018

Edmonton’s Marco Arop cruised into the men’s 800-metre semifinals on Tuesday at the World Athletics Championships.

Arop finished atop the seventh and final heat with a time of one minute 45.05 seconds. His time was second-best overall across the heats.

Arop was in the middle of the pack before pulling around and ahead of his competitors near the halfway mark of the second lap. From there, he went into cruise control, keeping everyone else at bay the remainder of the way.

“We train for it, it looks easy sometimes, (but) it’s because of all the hard work we put in,” Arop said post-race.

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The 24-year-old, who is the top-ranked 800 runner in the world, won bronze at last year’s worlds.

Arop was the second Canadian man to ever medal at worlds in the event after Gary Reed won silver in 2007 in Osaka, Japan.

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Toronto’s Abdullahi Hassan, 21, failed to qualify for the semifinals with a time of 1:46.33.

The men’s 800 semifinal will be Thursday with the final taking place on Saturday.

In other results, Jean-Simon Desgagnes of
Saint-Ferreol-les-Neiges, Que., placed eighth out of 16 competitors
in the men’s 3000 steeplechase with a personal-best time of 8:15.58.

Saskatoon’s Michelle Harrison qualified for the semifinals in the women’s 100 hurdles with a time of 12.88 seconds. Mariam Abdul-Rashid of Oshawa, Ont., missed the mark at 13.04.

Savannah Sutherland of Borden, Sask., finished sixth in her semifinal heat in the women’s 400 hurdles with a time of 54.99 seconds. As a result, the 20-year-old did not qualify for the final.

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