The 2017 Track and Field World Championships start today (day-by-day schedule here). Here are some things to look out for.
Bolt’s Final Run
Usain Bolt will presumably retire after this year. He’s undeniably the greatest sprinter of all time and has been the face of the sport for the last 10 years. He’s looking to cap off his nearly perfect career with victories in the 100m and 200m.
My Take – Bolt will win both races despite looking vulnerable and the media will be totally gaga about how amazing he is. I’m convinced Bolt has been doping for at least 9 years, but so are most of the others, so what do I care. The sport loses a great star, but maybe its for the better.
Semenya Attempts the Double
The biggest media story may well be Caster Semenya competing in both the 800m and 1500m. She’s been subject of a lot of controversy, and if she somehow pulls off this historic double, it will increase the drama & discussion behind the “transgender / intersex athletes place in athletics” conversation.
My Take – Caster Semenya should not be allowed to compete against women for all the reasons outlined in this post. I don’t think she’ll pull off the double, as rounds are tough, and she may not even win 1 gold as the 1500m is first.
Will the Mo-Show Continue?
Mo Farah looks to continue his ridiculous streak of 4 consecutive sweeps in the 5000m and 10,000m at international championships. We’ll see if anyone in the field pushes the pace against the 34 year old or if they’re content to let Mo kick to gold yet again.
My Take – I am so sick of Mo Farah, but I’m even more sick of his competitors doing the same thing over and over again. Someone, for the love of god, push the freakin’ pace. Yes, he’ll still probably win, but at least you can say you TRIED.
How Many Medalists Will Eventually Test Positive?
It’s in London, Coe’s backyard, so one of two things will happen:
- He’ll want to catch anyone who’d dare cheat while the event is in his country.
- He won’t want to catch anyone because it makes him look bad.
Doping is always a headline and a big name or two could potentially go down here. However, because it’s in London, Mo won’t be busted.
Which Americans Can Win Gold in Distance Events? (not a story line many care about)
Jager in the Steeple is hands down our best shot. I give him 50/50 to win.
Chelimo could actually upset Mo in the 5000m. I’d love to see him run 13:00 in a front-running effort and just burn the kick out of Mo.
Centro has like a 2% chance of doing what he did in Rio.
Brazier is a total wild card in the 800 but I like Amos then Korir as favorites.
We have no chance in the 10k.
All eyes on Ajee after that 1:55. With Semenya doubling, she’s got a shot!
Jenny finishing top 5 would be a great performance. No medal and definitely no gold.
Coburn in the steeple is similar to Jenny in the 1500.
The 5000 and 10000 are just too loaded. If Huddle or anyone else gets top 5, that’s a big win.