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Fast facts: women's track and field

By Compiled from Times wires

© St. Petersburg Times, published September 24, 2000


Marion Jones is off to a fast start in her quest for five gold medals. The Saturday highlights:

MARION JONES: The American won the 100 meters in 10.75 seconds, .37 ahead of Ekaterini Thanou of Greece. It was the second-biggest margin in Olympic history. She didn't break out the clear shoes, though. Instead, she chose a glistening hot-rod chrome model. Florida International University sprinter Tanya Lawrence was the surprise bronze medalist, finishing .01 seconds ahead of her idol, Merlene Ottey of Jamaica.

CATHY FREEMAN: The Australian, trying to become the first Aborigine to win an individual medal, easily won her second-round heat in the 400, qualifying for the semifinals. "At the moment, it's the Cathy and Marion show," said American Michael Johnson, referring to Freeman and Jones. "They're just slotting us in."

STACY DRAGILA: The world record-holding American qualified for the final of the first Olympic women's pole vault. Former world record holder Emma George of Australia did not advance.

CLARK FAMILY: Only one of the three Americans survived the 800 semifinals. Hazel Clark, the youngest, advanced. Older sister Joetta Clark-Diggs and sister-in-law Jearl Miles-Clark were eliminated. "I'm disappointed," Hazel said. "It would have been great if all three of us could have qualified. I'll just have to go out and represent the family the best I can."

HEPTATHLON: Ghada Shouaa's defense of her title lasted but a few seconds Saturday. The Syrian clipped the first two hurdles in the first event, then pulled up clutching the back of one leg. Shouaa was taken out of the stadium in a wheelchair. U.S. Olympic trials runner-up Sheila Burrell wrenched a knee when her spikes caught on the high jump apron. After being evaluated by team doctors, she rejoined the heptathlon for the third event, the shot put, despite scoring no points in the high jump and having no chance at a medal.

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