Tag Archives: finish

Grand National 2013: Last year"s fatalities put jump racing under the microscope

Grand National faces biggest test with fatalities putting jump racing under the microscope

By
Marcus Townend

PUBLISHED:

21:04 GMT, 3 April 2013

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UPDATED:

21:04 GMT, 3 April 2013

Four Grade One races of rare quality grace today’s opening day of Aintree’s Grand National meeting while tomorrow the clash between steeplechase superstar Sprinter Sacre, Cue Card and Flemenstar is being billed as the race of the season.

But which horses pass the winning line first over the next three days won’t matter a jot if Saturday’s big race turns into another visceral examination of jump racing.

Twelve months ago, when two horses were killed for a second year running, including Cheltenham Gold Cup winner Synchronised, the joy was squeezed out of the victory of Neptune Collonges.

Scroll down for Peter Scudamore's inside track on Aintree's new fences

Preparations: Aintree ground staff were tending to the new safer fences ahead of the three-day meeting

Preparations: Aintree ground staff were tending to the new safer fences ahead of the three-day meeting

The deaths of Synchronised and According To Pete raised questions as to whether the race could even survive in its present form.

RSPCA chief executive Gavin Grant called the deaths ‘totally unacceptable’ while branding the famous Becher’s Brook, where According To Pete was brought down before being hit by another horse, a ‘killer fence’. A nervous calm precedes this year’s race but a major modification to the fences’ construction has been welcomed (see graphic above).

Spokesmen for the RSPCA and World Horse Welfare deny the race is on trial but another body blow would be serious given a sponsor is being sought with John Smiths leaving after Saturday’s race.

Finishing touch: The grass on the Grand National finish line was cut this week before the Aintree showpiece

Finishing touch: The grass on the Grand National finish line was cut this week before the Aintree showpiece

WHW chief executive Roly Owers said: ‘There is still huge support for the race but there also are increasing voices within racing questioning whether the National is doing the sport any good. The warning bells have sounded and Aintree have recognised that.

‘Our biggest issue with the National is the number of fallers. It is five times higher than a normal steeplechase. The fewer fallers, the less chance of injury. The changes to the fence core are a real step forward and we also welcome the improvements in irrigation.

‘We recognise you can’t eliminate risk. The responsibility is to minimise it.’

WHW have repeated a call to reduce the number of starters.Owers said: ‘We believe there should be a trial reduction of three years. We recognise it has to be a great test but you can’t just accept the regular death of horses.’

Scrutiny: Last year's Grand National (above) saw the fatalities of According to Pete and Synchronised

Scrutiny: Last year's Grand National (above) saw the fatalities of According to Pete and Synchronised

RSPCA equine consultant David Muir added: ‘With 40 runners, you have 40 chances of things going wrong. I’d like to see them reduce it to 30 but we don’t run racing.’

Jockeys have been asked to moderate their speed to the first fence and the run-up to it has been shortened by 90 yards by moving the start further away from the unsettling cauldron of noise coming from of the grandstands.

Jamie Stier, BHA director of raceday operations, said: ‘The changes are all designed for horse welfare but at the same time we have maintained the shape, size and character of the fences.

Fences

‘People have to understand the position of the race within the fabric of society. Attendance figures last year were 155,000 at the meeting and more people watch the Grand National on TV than the FA Cup final — more than 11million — with a global audience of 600m in 140 countries.

‘We don’t feel it is on trial. It is down to the BHA and Aintree to find a way forward.’

Still, a lot of people will be holding their breath on Saturday.

Peter Scudamore looks at the major fences at this year's Grand…

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Antron Brown survives horrific dragster crash

Lucky driver walks away from horrific crash as 8,000-horsepower engine explodes with drag racer inside

By
John Drayton

PUBLISHED:

12:43 GMT, 18 February 2013

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UPDATED:

18:11 GMT, 18 February 2013

This is the moment the engine of a 300mph dragster explodes in the middle of a race – turning the machine into a fireball.

The race car can then be seen flipping over and continuing down the tracks as machine parts fly off the car on to the track.

Incredibly, driver Antron Brown manages to haul himself out the car completely uninjured when it comes to a stop and walks off the track to get himself checked out by medical teams.

Scroll down to watch the video

Lucky: Antron Brown somehow walked away from this horrific crash

Lucky: Antron Brown somehow walked away from this horrific crash

Brown, 36, had been competing in the
National Hot Rod Association's (NHRA) Winternationals drag racing
competition in Pomona, California, on Sunday.

He had just reached the finish line in the second round of final
eliminations against Dave Grubnic when the 8,000-horsepower engine
exploded.

But much has been done to protect drivers from these sorts of incidents
in recent years because of the inherent dangers associated with the
sport.

In flames: The dragster's 8,000-horsepower engine exploded unexpectedly

In flames: The dragster's 8,000-horsepower engine exploded unexpectedly

Shattering: The wall cracked after the dragster flew in to it

Shattering: The wall cracked after the dragster flew in to it

Minor injuries: Brown was able to walk away from the accident

Minor injuries: Brown was able to walk away from the accident

Halted: The dragster only stopped moving when skidding into a sand pit at the end of the track

Halted: The dragster only stopped moving when skidding into a sand pit at the end of the track

Brown's dragsters had a plastic canopy covering his head which was only
approved in August of last year and helped to protect him as he slid
down the track in flames.

A lot of the safety precautions brought in are to protect the drivers
from engine explosions after drag racing legend Edward Glenn 'Fireball'
Roberts who burned to death in a fiery car crash in 1964.

Driver must also wear a fire suits and a safety harness which holds them
secure in the seat but can be released in less than a second in case
the driver needs to escape the vehicle.

But, despite the safety precautions, many drivers have still been killed in races with 13 deaths between 1983 and 2010.

Dragster racing at 300mph explodes into fireball

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Armstrong competes in another triathlon in Maryland

Armstrong competes in another triathlon in Maryland

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UPDATED:

18:51 GMT, 7 October 2012

Lance Armstrong competed in a triathlon on Sunday after organisers dropped USA Triathlon sanctioning so he could take part in a race that raises money for cancer.

Armstrong is banned from events that follow World Anti-Doping Agency rules after he chose not to fight USADA charges of doping.

Crossing the line: Lance Armstrong finishes the triathlon

Crossing the line: Lance Armstrong finishes the triathlon

Armstrong finished the 70-mile swim, bike and run in 4 hours, 16 minutes at the Revolution3 Half-Full Triathlon, racing in a wave of about 50 fellow cancer survivors.

'This was a race that was built and designed to race money for cancer. So it was an easy decision,' said Brock Yetso, president of the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults.

'We had two individuals who decided
they did not want to race based on our decision and 300 who said they
wanted to. So I think numbers speak for themselves.'

Livestrong
CEO Doug Ulman founded the Ulman Cancer Foundation. 'He's led this
organisation to where it is today,' Armstrong said at the finish line of
Ulman's impact on Livestrong.

Tough challenge: Armstrong swims during the triathlon

Tough challenge: Armstrong swims during the triathlon

The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency stripped
Armstrong of his seven Tour de France titles in August for allegedly
using performance-enhancing drugs. He denies the charges but chose not
to continue fighting them.

Sunday's
race results will not count toward national rankings. College
competitors are still able to use the race as a national qualifier
event.

An estimated 62,000
in proceeds from the event will benefit the Ulman Cancer Fund, Yetso
said. A speaking event with Armstrong on Saturday night raised another
18,600 from ticket sales and a live auction.

Helping hand: Cancer survivor Jessica Protasio picks up Lance Armstrong after he competed

Helping hand: Cancer survivor Jessica Protasio picks up Lance Armstrong after he competed

'I think he's a great inspiration for anybody,' said Lennie Phillips of Kensington, Maryland, who survived brain cancer and competed in the special wave alongside Armstrong.

'All of these allegations, whether they're true or not, I don't know, but he still had to go through all the treatments.'

Wilson Kipsang wins Great North Run while Jo Pavey impresses

Pavey back on track with good showing at Great North Run

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UPDATED:

18:17 GMT, 16 September 2012

Almost 40,000 people took part in the biggest Great North Run in history on Sunday, in what could be regarded as the first step towards a successful London 2012 legacy.

Lord Coe hopes the Olympics will inspire two million people to take up sport. And what more inspiration could they want than five British gold medal winners to fire the starting pistol

Double Olympic athletics champion Mo Farah, long jumper Greg Rutherford, boxer Nicola Adams, rower Kat Copeland and double Paralympic gold-medal swimmer Ellie Simmonds started proceedings.

Impressive: Jo Pavey (right) enjoyed a good run

Impressive: Jo Pavey (right) enjoyed a good run

Farah, who was one of the stars of the track this summer with wins in the 5,000m and 10,000m, planned to compete in the race for the first time this year. But with the arrival of twin daughters he decided to pull out.

The 29-year-old said: ‘The last few weeks have taken their toll and it would be disrespectful to take on the distance without the necessary hard training.’

But British long distance runner Jo Pavey, who finished seventh in both the women’s 5,000m and 10,000m in the summer, did compete and found more success in the half marathon from Newcastle to South Shields.

Taking it on the line: Wilson Kipsang wins the Men's 2012 Bupa Great North Run in Newcastle

Taking it on the line: Wilson Kipsang wins the Men's 2012 Bupa Great North Run in Newcastle

Afterwards the 38-year-old, who
finished fifth, said: ‘Having the Great North Run to get back on the
roads, it’s been a big target to keep training and keep the motivation
there. Today there was a really tough field. There were two Olympic
champions and a world champion so it was always going to be hard.’

In total 39,953 crossed the finish line — the Olympic legacy has a long way to go, but this was a great start.

Kenya’s Wilson Kipsang, who won bronze in the Olympic marathon, won the men’s race.

Kipsang snatched victory from fellow Kenyan Micah Kogo thanks to a dramatic sprint finish that went right to the line.

He pipped Kogo to the victory in the last 20 metres in a time of 59 minutes and six seconds.

Pushed all the way: Kipsang celebrates winning Great North Run ahead of fellow Kenyan Micah Kogo

Pushed all the way: Kipsang celebrates winning Great North Run ahead of fellow Kenyan Micah Kogo

Ethiopia's Imana Merga finished third and Chris Thompson was the highest-placed Briton in sixth with a time of 61 minutes.

In the women's race, Ethiopian Tirunesh Dibaba powered to victory on her half marathon debut.

The three-time Olympic champion and
four-time world champion, who became the first athlete to retain the
Olympic 10,000 metres title this summer, saw off the challenge of 2011
world marathon champion Edna Kiplagat and 2012 Olympic Games marathon
champion Tiki Gelana to claim the victory.

Dibaba finished with a time of 67 minutes 35 seconds, just outside of the symbolic 67-minute mark.

Vuelta a Espana 2012: Alberto Contador takes lead

Rodriguez loses Vuelta lead to Contador as Froome clings on to fourth place after 17th stage

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UPDATED:

16:49 GMT, 5 September 2012

Alberto Contador of Team Saxo Bank assumed the overall lead of the Vuelta a Espana on Wednesday as Joaquin Rodriguez endured a dreadful 17th stage.

Rodriguez (Katusha) went into the final five legs of the 21-stage race with a healthy 28-second lead after outpacing his fellow Spaniard in Monday's gruelling mountain climb.

But his prospects of winning a first-ever major race are now in jeopardy as he struggled to attack the Collado La Hoz, a second category climb towards the finish line at Fuente De.

Seeing red: Alberto Contador retook the lead in the Vuelta on Wednesday

Seeing red: Alberto Contador retook the lead in the Vuelta on Wednesday

Gruelling: Contador was in tremendous shape on the 17th stage of the race

Gruelling: Contador was in tremendous shape on the 17th stage of the race

Pushed into third place by Alejandro Valverde of Movistar, who with Contador outsprinted chase leader Sergio Henoa (Team Sky) to the line, Rodriguez now sits two minutes and 28 seconds off the lead with four stages remaining.

Contador established his daunting one minute and 52 second lead over Valverde before getting out of his saddle to pass Henoa and solo over the line to claim the red jersey.

Following a rest day, today's 187km route began in Santander with Gabriel Rasch of FDJ-BigMat mounting an early attack.

Rodriguez was soon caught out as the peloton split at the halfway stage, just about managing to regain his place in the leading pack with Contador steadily extending his lead on the Collado La Hoz.

But Rodriguez floundered without the help of his team-mates and was totally left behind as Contador turned the Vuelta standings upside down with a searing sprint to the finish line.

Team Sky's Chris Froome remains five minutes off the pace but held on to fourth place in the overall classification on Wednesday.

Oh dear: Joaquin Rodriguez had a miserable stage and lost his lead

Oh dear: Joaquin Rodriguez had a miserable stage and lost his lead

Oh dear: Joaquin Rodriguez had a miserable stage

F1 washout as heavy rain batters Belgian Grand Prix practice

Good to be back F1 washout as heavy rain batters Belgian Grand Prix practice

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UPDATED:

15:39 GMT, 31 August 2012

Unrelenting heavy rain virtually washed out the second practice session ahead of Sunday's Belgian Grand Prix.

It was hardly the ideal return for Formula One after a 33-day hiatus since the last race in Hungary at the end of July.

But the capricious nature of the Ardennes struck again, casting a gloomy picture over the Spa-Francorchamps circuit for the entire day.

Water return: Sebastian Vettel navigates around Spa Francorchamps track

Water return: Sebastian Vettel navigates around Spa Francorchamps track

The famous seven-kilometre track was already sodden when the rain set in 10 minutes prior to the start of the first session.

At least the conditions were not too bad as a number of laps were posted during the opening 90 minutes, with Kamui Kobayashi in his Sauber quickest with a time of two minutes 11.389secs, albeit 23 seconds adrift of last year's pole lap.

During the course of the lunch break, however, the rain continued to teem down, so when it came to the start of FP2, unsurprisingly not a single driver ventured out.

It took 48 minutes for a car to emerge from the garage, at least offering those die-hard fans huddled under umbrellas a glimpse of some action.

Making a splash: Fernando Alonso battles in the conditions in Belgium

Making a splash: Fernando Alonso battles in the conditions in Belgium

It was Mercedes' Nico Rosberg who initially opted to brave the elements, followed shortly after by team-mate Michael Schumacher who this weekend celebrates his 300th grands prix.

On his 21st outing at this track, where he has previously won six times, Schumacher will have encountered such conditions on many occasions, but even by Spa standards it was exceptional.

Just 10 drivers set irrelevant timed laps, and only because they were on track at the end of the session and approached the start-finish line for a practice start.

Six drivers overall did not even bother to venture out – Mark Webber in his Red Bull, Lotus duo Kimi Raikkonen and Romain Grosjean, Caterham's Vitaly Petrov and Pedro de la Rosa and Narain Karthikeyan for HRT.

Keeping dry: Lewis Hamilton shelters under an umbrella at practice

Keeping dry: Lewis Hamilton shelters under an umbrella at practice

To pass the time a number of drivers took to Twitter, with the likes of McLaren's Lewis Hamilton posting snaps of his car, helmet and racing boots at various stages.

It means the teams have precious little information to go on for qualifying tomorrow and the race on Sunday.

The hope, at least, is the final-hour long practice run on Saturday is dry, with the forecast looking promising.

London 2012 Olympics: We planned to hug then cross the line, reveals Brownlee

We planned to hug then cross the line, reveals Brownlee

|

UPDATED:

22:31 GMT, 11 August 2012

Alistair Brownlee, warned by Olympic
bosses against trying to stage a triathlon dead-heat with his brother,
Jonny, claims he had planned an alternative display of fraternal
solidarity at the finish line in Hyde Park last week.

Brownlee says he wanted to stop short
of the finish and wait for his brother so they could enjoy a fraternal
embrace before he ran in to take the gold medal just a metre ahead of
Jonny.

But the plan was thwarted by the silver
going to Spain's Javier Gomez, with the younger Brownlee taking bronze, a
further 20 seconds behind, having served a 15-second time penalty.

Oh brother: Alistair Brownlee (left) consoles brother Jonny, who won bronze

Oh brother: Alistair Brownlee (left) consoles brother Jonny, who won bronze

Alistair, 24, said: 'We knew we couldn't cross the line together because it would have contravened regulations and it would have been impossible to make it a tie, so the plan was for me to stop a few metres before the line and wait for Jonny to catch me up.

'Then we would have embraced and celebrated before I, as the obvious race winner, would have jogged in ahead of Jonny to the finish line. It would have been a very special moment for us if that had taken place but winning gold and bronze was very special anyway.

'Of course there was always the danger that Jonny would have run straight past me to win – but if he'd tried I would have tripped him up!'

Gomez ruined that plan but cannot prevent Alistair's next idea, to run in the 10,000metres at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow after astonishing the sporting world by completing the 10k in Tuesday's triathlon in 29min 7sec, despite stopping to collect a flag and walking the final few metres.

'I'd love to compete in the 10k at Glasgow,' he revealed, committing himself further than at any point during the week.

'There's no way I'd ever turn my back on the triathlon but it would be a welcome break from just training for the tri, and it could be part of my overall training. I'm 24, I'm Olympic and world champion, so it'd be nice to try something different.

'I reckon I could get down to the lower 28-minutes mark, which would be good enough for me to represent England at the Commonwealths, I'd hope. Providing the timetable allows it I'd like to give it a shot. The qualifying requirement for the 10k in Glasgow is not massively quick, so it's a target.'

The Brownlees could go on to dominate the Commonwealth Games, with both gunning for the title separately as well as pairing up to win team gold for England. They plan to do the same at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, too, especially if the IO C ratify a move to add a team competition to the individual in the Olympic triathlon, a decision expected next year.

But if Jonny, 22, hopes big brother will make way for him in Rio, then his idea was dashed on Sunday night.

'I wouldn't be disappointed if the results were reversed and Jonny became Olympic champion in 2016 and I won bronze – but I'd be happier if I defended my title successfully,' Alistair said. 'I certainly won't be moving aside for my brother. He'll have to beat me.'

London 2012 Olympics: Ashton Eaton secures decathalon gold

Eaton digs deep to see off rival Hardee and secure decathlon gold

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UPDATED:

22:16 GMT, 9 August 2012

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LIVE RESULTS |
EVENT SCHEDULE |
MEDALS TABLE

Ashton Eaton deservedly took the unofficial title of the world's greatest athlete when he won gold in the Olympic decathlon on Thursday with a total of 8,869 points.

World champion Trey Hardee took silver, 198 points behind in a United States one-two and Cuba's Leonel Suarez secured a second successive bronze thanks to an Olympic best performance for the decathlon of 76.94 metres in the javelin.

Relief: Ashton Eaton celebrates as he crosses the finish line in the 1500-m

Relief: Ashton Eaton celebrates as he crosses the finish line in the 1500-m

Eaton had virtually sealed the gold medal after nine of the 10 events but after dragging himself around the concluding 1,500 metres in a time of four minutes 33.59 their was only relief on his face.

The 24-year-old had a cushion of 222 points going into the race and was content to stay in the pack, not bothering to follow when Belgian Hans van Alphen upped the pace.

Eaton caught his breath and was congratulated by the other decathletes. They then started the customary joint celebrations, posing for a group photo – Eaton draped in the U.S. flag – before setting off on a lap of honour together. Having broken Roman Sebrle's 11-year-old world record in June, Eaton missed out on taking the Czech's Olympic mark of 8,893 by 24 points.

He had started the second day with a lead of 220, only to be pegged back to 99 points by Hardee after a poor discus. However, Eaton took control again with third place in the pole vault of 5.20 metres and a personal best of 61.96 in the javelin.

One-two: Ashton Eaton and Trey Hardee (right)

One-two: Ashton Eaton and Trey Hardee (right)

He was helped in the pole vault by the failure of Hardee's gamble of passing at 4.90 and going straight to 5.00. Wearing a support on his right elbow following surgery last year, Hardee knocked the bar off on all three attempts, leaving him with a best of 4.80 and allowing Eaton to stretch his lead.

He had been left shaking his head at the end of the discus after only managing 42.53, almost five metres down on his personal best for 22nd out of the 27 athletes.

Hardee, the stronger thrower of the U.S. pair, had finished third in the discus with 48.26 for 834 points, 118 more than Eaton's mark earned, to close the gap on the leader.

'I threw a terrible one, he threw a bad one and I was like “all right, we're doing okay”,' Eaton told reporters. 'I threw another bad one, he threw an awesome one and it was: “oh I have to figure out what I'm doing and do this” and I threw another bad one. I was so disappointed with myself… he competed well. I didn't.'

Hardee also beat Eaton in the day's first event, the 110 hurdles, shouting as he crossed the line in a personal best time of 13.54.

Eaton had got his first Games off to a flying start on Wednesday with the fastest 100 metres in an Olympic decathlon of 10.35 seconds. He then won the long jump with 8.03 metres before going close to his personal best in the shot put with 14.66.

Group photo: The Decathlon athletes

Group photo: The Decathlon athletes

LONDON OLYMPICS 2012: Oscar Pistorius relief as South Africa reach relay final

Relief for Pistorius as South African relay team reach final following appeal after collision seemed like it would end dream

|

UPDATED:

13:15 GMT, 9 August 2012

Olympics 2012

Double-amputee runner Oscar Pistorius will get a shot at an Olympic medal after all, even after his South African team failed to finish the heats of the 4x400m relay.

A jury of appeal said South Africa 'had been severely damaged' in a collision between Ofentse Mogawane and a Kenyan runner who cut across him too soon in the second section of Thursday's heat.

The jury of appeal decided to give the extra ninth lane to South Africa – silver medalists at the last world championships – for Friday's final.

On a hectic morning, it was the second reversal of fortunes for the South African. First, the South African team never made it to the third section of the 4×400-meter relay in the opening heat after Mogawane crashed and dislocated his shoulder, leaving Pistorius waiting in the changeover zone for a baton that never came.

Pistorius stood on the track waiting to run third in the relay but Ofentse Mogawane collided with Kenyan runner Vincent Kilu about 90 meters from the finish of the second section and fell.

Oscar Pistorius

Oscar Pistorius

What happened there Pistorius didn't even get the chance to run in the 4x400m relay on Thursday

Pistorius waited to see if his teammate would continue before walking off and watching the rest of the race from beside the finish line.

'I was standing there and I took my eyes off the screen and kept them on the straight and obviously just as I took them off it must have happened,' said Pistorius, who reached the semi-finals of the individual event on his historic Olympic debut.

'He's not the biggest of guys and initially I thought he was maybe pushed in behind someone and then I just carried on looking and he didn't come out. It's really tough at the moment. I feel sorry for my team-mates, they're a phenomenal group of guys.

'It's just really disappointing for us because we came off a second place at the world champs last year and a national record and we've got more or less the same team.'

It seemed to be an anguished finish for the man known as the 'Blade Runner,' who became the first amputee runner to compete in Olympic track and field competition when he ran in the individual 400 earlier in the week. He reached the semi-finals in that event but finished last in his heat.

Waiting in vain: Pistorius never received the baton

Waiting in vain: Pistorius never received the baton

Jack Green lived up to his promise to show what he is capable of with a baton in his hand by helping Britain reach the final of the men's 4x400m relay.

Green was devastated to bow out of his specialist event, the 400m hurdles, in the semi-finals after hitting the third hurdle and crashing to the track.

Over to you: Jack Green hands the baton to Martyn Rooney

Over to you: Jack Green hands the baton to Martyn Rooney

The 20-year-old was determined to prove firstly his fitness and then show he deserved his place on the relay team, doing so with a storming finish to the third leg to give anchor runner Martyn Rooney a narrow lead.

Rooney held that lead until easing up just before the line, allowing Trinidad and Tobago to take first place, although both teams were given the same time of three minutes 00.38 seconds to qualify automatically for the final.

The Bahamas and the United States were also given the same time of 2mins 58.87secs in the second semi-final to qualify quickest, but any faint hopes of Usain Bolt appearing in the 4x400m final were ended when Jamaican team-mate Jermaine Gonzales pulled up injured on the third leg.

Green, whose training partner and
world 400m hurdles champion Dai Greene could feature in the final, said:
'I am gutted about my individual event, but it was nice to come here
and kind of make up for that.

'I've only half made up for it, I've
got to run well tomorrow as well if I'm in the team. I'd like to think
I've done enough to be in the team, I put us in a very good place, but
I'm not in charge of the team.

'But it felt good, it felt quite
controlled, felt like there's a bit more there. I didn't want to go off
crazy, especially with the anger I've got in me still from the hurdles.

'I think if the relay was a single
individual event that would be my event, it's much better than the
hurdles, I haven't got anything to trip over. I think that was just a
hint of what I can do.'

Well done, lads: Nigel Levine, Jack Green, Martyn Rooney, and Conrad Williams celebrate after reaching the final

Well done, lads: Nigel Levine, Jack Green, Martyn Rooney, and Conrad Williams celebrate after reaching the final

Asked about coping with his fall in the hurdles, Green added: 'I was very disappointed. I still wanted to run but I kind of didn't. It would have been nice just to finish up, leave it there, but this is an Olympics in my home country and I have an opportunity to try and win a medal so I'm going to try and do that.'

Rooney added: 'I was pleasantly surprised when I got the baton in front. It's definitely a great place to be in front of the home crowd. I eased up quite early, I thought the Trinidad guy wasn't going to get there so I looked the other way and he dipped.

'It's a rookie mistake and I'm disappointed that I didn't win it for the team because the guys ran so well. I definitely wasn't being pushed so I'm excited about tomorrow. I think we've got to go in there believing that we can win a medal.'

Nigel Levine, who ran the first leg, added: 'The aim was to qualify very easily. We finished second by a minor mistake by Rooney. But we all know that it's going to be a better day tomorrow.

'We were all disappointed to just be semi-finalists in the individual, but we've got another opportunity to run and show everyone what we can do.'

Conrad Williams, who ran the second leg, added: 'We've got 2:59 in us and we're definitely going to have to break three minutes to get on that medal rostrum.

'We can do that, Rooney eased back knowing we were through, that's the main thing. We've had three days rest so we are fresh. But it's still going to be tough to make a medal so we're not counting our eggs before they've hatched.'

London 2012 Olympics: Hannah England misses out on 1500m final

England shock as Dobrisky and Weightman go through to women's 1500m final

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UPDATED:

19:25 GMT, 8 August 2012

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Britain will have two women in the final of the 1500m after Lisa Dobriskey and Laura Weightman advanced from the semi-finals, but world silver medallist Hannah England missed out.

Dobriskey, who has made a remarkable return to fitness after being diagnosed with potentially fatal blood clots on her lungs earlier this year, was fourth in the first semi-final to qualify automatically.

Mixed fortunes: Hannah England failed to reach the 1500m final but Britain team-mate Lisa Dobriskey booked her place in the finale

Mixed fortunes: Hannah England failed to reach the 1500m final but Britain team-mate Lisa Dobriskey booked her place in the finale

Falling behind: England was struggling to make up the ground and didn't manage to put in one of her trademark strong finishes

Falling behind: England was struggling to make up the ground and didn't manage to put in one of her trademark strong finishes

On the charge: Dobriskey hunts down the leading pack to book her place in the final

On the charge: Dobriskey hunts down the leading pack to book her place in the final

But Weightman endured an agonising
wait as officials examined a photo finish in the second semi before
going through as one of the two fastest losers in a new personal best of
4:02.99.

Weightman edged out Slovakia's Lucia Klocova on the line, with both athletes given the same time.

England, who spent five days in
hospital earlier this year after being spiked in her Achilles tendon
during a race, was ninth in the first semi in 4:06.35.

Waiting game: Laura Weightman had an agonising wait before realising she had reached the final as one of the fastest losers

Waiting game: Laura Weightman had an agonising wait before realising she had reached the final as one of the fastest losers