– After a two-day break in competition at the 2012 USA Olympic Trials in Eugene, Ore., action resumed Thursday with former Razorback Jeremy Scott securing his spot in London with a second-place finish in the pole vault. In other qualifying rounds, former Arkansas standouts Dorian Ulrey
(1,500 meters) and Nkosinza Balumbu (triple jump) advanced to the next round of their respective event.
Competing at the Jamaican Championships in Kingston, Akheem Gauntlett
advanced to the semifinal round of the 400 meters. Gauntlett won heat one in a time of 47.44 on Thursday to secure an automatic spot into the next round. The semifinal round of the 400 meters at the Jamaican Championships will be run Saturday.
Scott, a Razorback during the 2004 season, qualified for his first Olympic Games with a second-place finish in the event final of the pole vault. He opened the competition with first-attempt clearances at the first three heights and finished the day with a final mark of 5.60m/18-4.5. Olympic competition in the event begins Wednesday, August 8 in London. Scott was the 2004 SEC outdoor champion and All-American during his one season at Arkansas.
“Obviously, the goal coming in is to finish top three,” Scott said during the post-race press conference. “I’m not sure it has really sunk in yet. You just have that goal set up. Right now, it’s all about the next three or four weeks. I plan on going to London, having a good experience and competing well. To (make the Olympic team) in this stadium and in front of this crowd, you don’t get many meets like this.”
In the first event of the day, Duncan Phillips
finished ninth in his heat and 26th overall in the first round of the 1,500 meters. The just-graduated Razorback ran to a time of 3:42.75 and placed just two spots out of qualifying for the semifinal. Ulrey advanced to the next round of the 1,500 meters with his time of 3:42.55. Ulrey (2009-11) finished 24th overall and grabbed one of the six at-large spots in the semifinal.
Balumbu (2006-09) finished seventh in the qualifying round of the triple jump. He finished the three rounds with a best mark of 16.45m/53-11.75, which he got in his final attempt. He would not have advanced with his previous best of the series. The event final of the triple jump will be contested Saturday at 6:40 p.m. (CT).
closed out his junior season with a 27th-place finish in the 400-meter hurdles. He posted a final time of 57.05 after a miscue over the final hurdle. The Newport, Ark., native wrapped a 2012 season in which he was the SEC outdoor champion and a national qualifier for the NCAA Championships.
Competition for the Razorbacks, past and present, continues Friday with the first round of the 200 meters and semifinals of the 1,500 meters. For more information regarding Razorback track and field or University of Arkansas athletics, please visit ArkansasRazorbacks.com.
400 Meters (first round, at Jamaican Championships)
6. Akheem Gauntlett
1,500 Meters (first round)
26. Duncan Phillips
400m Hurdles (first round)
27. Caleb Cross
1,500 Meters (first round)
24. Dorian Ulrey
Pole Vault (final)
2. Jeremy Scott – 5.60m/18-4.5
Triple Jump (qualifying)
7. Nkosinza Balumbu – 16.45m/53-11.75Q
Q – qualified for next round