After getting home from the track at 11pm the night before, I set my alarm for 6:15am to start all over again on Friday. I woke up early as I was planning on taking the GO bus again. I was on the Mississauga Transit bus by 7:40 and at the track within an hour. That included a much needed stop at the Starbucks! I quickly went into the York University student centre to buy water and went to the track.
So – I thought Thursday night was hot: Friday was insane. For the Friday events, I was on the grandstand which was right in the sun. I was wearing my black Team Canada Gold shirt, which did not help things at all. I was sweating buckets. Because of the limited shade, people (including myself) were not in the seats, but huddled in groups in any shaded spot we could find.
Friday’s events did not feature many medal events. It was mostly hurdles and 4x400m relays as the 1500m semis were cancelled (they just ran a final instead). The hurdles included the 110m Men’s hurdles, which included one of my track club’s athletes and the 100mH event of the heptathlon. Another track club friend was on the 4×400 team, but sadly was not running (he was an alternate).
First up were the 110mH. Sadly, Sekou did not make it past the semi’s by *this much*. He finished in 9th place.
Up after that was the 100m hurdles – Jessica Zelinka, an Olympian for both the 100mH individual event and heptathlon was up. The first heat also had another Canadian, Jill Drouin, who unfortunately false started (after the whole field was charged after the first false start) and was DQ’d from the event. This is what a false start looks like using my sports feature on my camera:
Jessica easily won the hurdle event, but both her and Jill dropped out of the hepathlon by day 2. Zelinka has had some ongoing achilles issues and it appears that it got worse. She posted a video explaining that she was pretty much told to stop. I’m thinking she is probably out for World’s as well.
We also got to see Damien Warner receiving his Gold Medal!
After the hurdles, there was a track break. I immediately went upstairs to grab some shade. I also grabbed some lunch in the huge concession food line. The concession helpers were walking around with trays of drinks (including beer) but most of us in line really wanted a snack too. Soon enough, I was back in my seats for the 4x400m Relay Semis. Canada’s Women team did well, advancing to the finals and eventually winning the bronze medal. The Men’s team, despite having a season’s best run, did not make it past semis. And I really don’t want to talk about the next nights 4×100 team…..
After the 4x400m, I was getting so hot and tired that I left the stands. I was making my way around the track when I heard the110mH finals go. If you didn’t watch the event, there was an issue with the start and the starter set off the second recall shot. But it sounded like beeps and the guys kept running. Then, they finally got out the real starting gun and let off like 4-6 shots to recall the race. By that time, at least 4 of the athletes were almost done the race, with one all the way to the end. So – they had to wait 20 minutes to start the race again. Crazy!
Overall, I had tons of fun at the Pan Am Games. It was fun to cheer on Team Canada, but also watch athletes from other countries compete as well. Maybe we will get the Olympics one day?