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Thursday August 9, 2012Taylor and Claye Capture Gold and Silver in Olympic Men's Triple Jump

London, England

Photo: US Presswire

Christian Taylor (U.S.A.) and Will Claye (U.S.A.) had a phenomenal afternoon, capturing the gold and silver medals, respectively, for Team USA in the menís triple jump on Thursday at Olympic Stadium. Taylorís gold medal is the first individual gold medal in the history of Florida track & field on the menís or womenís side, and Taylor and Claye earned the second and third field medals in the history of the program. Along with these two Gators, Tony McQuay (U.S.A.) competed in the preliminaries of the menís 4x400-meter relay for Team USA.

 

In the menís triple jump, Claye was the early leader after foot-fouling his first attempt by the smallest of margins, and responding in the second round with a mark of 17.54m/57-6.5 (0.0) to put him into first. Taylor struggled early on as he fouled his first two jumps before putting in a ďsafety jumpĒ of 17.15m/56-3.25 (-0.1) on his third attempt to earn three more chances. In the fourth round, Taylor launched a huge jump of 17.81m/58-5.25 (+0.6), a seasonís best, to catapult him into the top spot, and Claye improved his best to 17.62m/57-9.75 (+0.6) to solidify his status in second place.

 

ďThere is just so much going on right now, but I am so blessed to share this moment with my family, my grandparents and so many people in the crowd right now,Ē Taylor said. ďMy coach and I have just worked tremendously hard, and to see this all come together at this time is a blessing.Ē

 

Taylorís gold medal is the first for the U.S. since Kenny Harrison in 1996. This is the first time since 1992 (gold: Mike Conley, silver: Charles Simpkins) that Team USA has finished 1-2 in the menís triple jump. Claye, who earned a bronze medal in the menís long jump earlier in the London Games, is the first American man since 1904 to medal in both jumps at the same Olympics, and Thursday marks the first time since 1936 that any man has medaled in both.

 

ďIt is awesome,Ē Claye said. ďChristian and I have been going 1-2 for a long time. We have a brotherhood, and jumping against your brother, you go harder than you do with anyone else. It feels like it is just me and Christian out there sometimes, you know. It is an awesome rivalry, and we definitely push each other and help each other.Ē

 

Starting off the action on Thursday for the Gators was McQuay, running the third leg of the U.S. menís 4x400-meter relay. The U.S. finished second in their heat and second overall in a seasonís best 2:58.87, despite opening leg Manteo Mitchell breaking his fibula just 200 meters into the race. McQuay ran the fastest split of all competitors in the preliminary round with his time of 43.65. That tops his fastest split of 44.01 from the NCAA Outdoor Championships in June. The finals of the menís 4x400-meter relay are on Friday at 4:20 p.m. ET and the lineup will be announced on Friday morning.

 

ďI felt like I did a pretty good job,Ē McQuay said. ďI just kept it close for my boy, Bryshon. I think I did a good job coming home strong and kept it close. Overall Iím proud with the team. Our goal was to qualify, so that mission is complete and we are going into the finals with a great lane.Ē

 

Friday is a relay day for the Gators, as Novlene Williams-Mills (Jamaica) competes in the first round of the womenís 4x400-meter relay. Her race begins at 2:10 p.m. ET. Jeff Demps (U.S.A.) has gone from understudy to center stage, as he will run the opening leg of the U.S. menís 4x100-meter relay on Friday, beginning at 2:45 p.m. ET. McQuay will likely run in the finals of the menís 4x400-meter relay, beginning at 4:20 p.m. Kerron Clement (U.S.A.) is in the relay pool for that event as well and could possibly see action with Mitchellís absence.

 

To keep up with all the Gators at the Olympics, make sure to follow @OlympicGators on Twitter. For all of the latest information on Florida track and field, log on to www.GatorZone.com/trackfield or, for up-to-the-minute updates, follow the teamís Twitter account @GZTrackField or www.twitter.com/GZTrackField. You can also find the Gators on Facebook.

 

FLORIDA TRACK & FIELD MEDAL COUNT

NAME

COUNTRY

EVENT

MEDAL

Will Claye

U.S.A.

Menís Long Jump

Bronze

Will Claye

U.S.A.

Menís Triple Jump

Silver

Christian Taylor

U.S.A.

Menís Triple Jump

Gold

 

GATORS AT THE 2012 OLYMPIC GAMES Ė TRACK & FIELD

Gator Athlete

Country

Time (ET)

Round and Event

Result

FRIDAY, AUGUST 3, 2012

Kemal Mesic

Bosnia

5:00 AM

Qualification: Shot Put

12th in flight (24th overall), 19.60m/64-3.75, did not advance to final

Kerron Clement

U.S.A.

6:15 AM

Round 1: 400m Hurdles

2nd in heat (2nd overall), seasonís best 48.48, advanced to semifinal

Novlene Williams-Mills

Jamaica

7:00 AM

Round 1: 400m

1st in heat (6th overall), 50.88, advanced to semifinal

Will Claye

U.S.A.

2:50 PM

Qualification: Long Jump

6th in flight (8th overall), 7.99m/26-2.75, advanced to final

SATURDAY, AUGUST 4, 2012

Tony McQuay

U.S.A.

5:35 AM

Round 1: 400m

2nd in his heat (18th overall), 45.48, advances to semifinals

Genevieve LaCaze

Australia

6:35 AM

Round 1: 3,000m Steeplechase

9th in her heat (22nd overall), 9:37.90 (PR), did not advance to final

Kerron Clement

U.S.A.

2:00 PM

Semifinals: 400m Hurdles

3rd in his heat (5th overall), 48.12 (SB), advances to final

Will Claye

U.S.A.

2:55 PM

Final: Long Jump

WON BRONZE MEDAL, 8.12m/26-7.75

Novlene Williams-Mills

Jamaica

3:05 PM

Semifinals: 400m

3rd in her heat (3rd overall), 49.91, advances to final

SUNDAY, AUGUST 5, 2012

Tony McQuay

U.S.A.

3:40 PM

Semifinals: 400m

4th in heat 2 (45.31); did not advance to final

Novlene Williams-Mills

Jamaica

4:10 PM

Final: 400m

5th place, 50.11

MONDAY, AUGUST 6, 2012

Moise Joseph

Haiti

5:50 AM

Round 1: 800m

6th in heat (36th overall), 1:48.46, did not advance to semifinal

Kerron Clement

U.S.A.

3:45 PM

Final: 400m Hurdles

Finished 8th in final, 49.15

TUESDAY, AUGUST 7, 2012

Will Claye

U.S.A.

5:45 AM

Qualification: Triple Jump

4th in flight (7th overall), 16.87m/55-4.25 (-0.2), advances to final

Christian Taylor

U.S.A.

5:45 AM

Qualification: Triple Jump

1st in flight (1st overall), 17.21m/56-5.75 (+0.2), advances to final

Shara Proctor

Great Britain

2:05 PM

Qualification: Long Jump

1st in flight (1st overall), 6.83m/22-5 (-0.2), advances to final

WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 8, 2012

Shara Proctor

Great Britain

3:05 PM

Final: Long Jump

Finished 9th, 6.55m/21-6 (+0.2)

THURSDAY, AUGUST 9, 2012

Tony McQuay

U.S.A.

6:35 AM

Round 1: 4x400m Relay

2nd in heat (2nd overall), 2:58.87 (43.65 split), advances to final

Will Claye

U.S.A.

2:20 PM

Final: Triple Jump

WON SILVER MEDAL, 17.62m/57-9.75 (+0.6)

Christian Taylor

U.S.A.

2:20 PM

Final: Triple Jump

WON GOLD MEDAL, 17.81m/58-5.25 (+0.6)

FRIDAY, AUGUST 10, 2012

Novlene Williams-Mills

Jamaica

2:10 PM

Round 1: 4x400m Relay

Jeff Demps

U.S.A.

2:45 PM

Round 1: 4x100m Relay

Kerron Clement

U.S.A.

4:20 PM

Final: 4x400m Relay

Tony McQuay

U.S.A.

4:20 PM

Final: 4x400m Relay

SATURDAY, AUGUST 11, 2012

Novlene Williams-Mills

Jamaica

3:25 PM

Final: 4x400m Relay

Jeff Demps

U.S.A.

4:00 PM

Final: 4x100m Relay

Semifinal Ė Contingent Upon Advancing from Round 1

Final Ė Contingent Upon Advancing from Qualification or Semifinal

 

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