Hardee qualifies for second Olympic Team in decathlon on second day of Trials
June 23, 2012
EUGENE, Ore. – Trey Hardee became the first member of the Texas Men’s Track & Field family to earn a spot on the U.S. Olympic Team with his second-place decathlon finish (8,383 points) Saturday at the U.S. Olympic Trials.
Hardee made his second Olympic team less than one year after he underwent reconstructive elbow surgery to repair his ulnar collateral ligament, which he tore throwing a personal-best in the javelin at the 2011 World Championships in Daegu, South Korea.
“I got pretty emotional, more so than the first time making the team,” Hardee said. “And this was definitely more work. I had to have a lot more faith and a lot more patience but I couldn’t be any more excited than I am right now.”
“Obviously it’s a feat within itself to make an Olympic team,” said Hardee’s coach and Texas associate head coach Mario Sategna. “But to be coming off an injury that would take most people a year’s time and to compete at such a high level, I couldn’t be more excited for Trey.”
Hardee finished 656 points behind Trials winner Ashton Eaton, who set a new decathlon world record (9,039 points) with a personal-best 4:14.48 in the final 1500m event.
Hardee began the day in second place and rising senior Isaac Murphy sat in 11th heading into the final five decathlon events. Decathlon heavyweights Eaton and Bryan Clay held the first and third spots, respectively.
The 110 hurdles was the first event of the morning with Murphy in the second of four heats. He ran a 14.92 for 859 points and tied for ninth in the event. Hardee ran in the final heat with Eaton and Clay and was second in 13.71, just one hundredth of a second behind Eaton.
Clay, after a false start, was initially disqualified in the heat after stumbling into the ninth hurdle and hitting the 10th with his hands. He was reinstated after it was determined he was attempting to lift his knee over the hurdle, but three fouls in the discus effectively ended his campaign to make the Olympic Team.
Hardee and Eaton distanced themselves from the rest of the pack early in the day, and Clay’s trouble all but guaranteed them spots on Team USA as the only decathletes to have already achieved the Olympic A qualifying standard.
In the discus, Murphy moved up to 10th in the overall standings with a season-best throw (43.51m, 142-09.00). He placed seventh in the event and picked up 736 points. Hardee won the discus with a toss of 49.05m (160-11.00), nearly four meters longer than his closest competitor in the event. After seven events, he was 195 points shy of Eaton in first place.
Hardee lost ground on Eaton in the pole vault but placed third with a mark of 5.00m (16-04.75). Murphy cleared 4.60m (15-01.00) on his first attempt and passed at 4.70m but was unable to successfully clear 4.80m. He took 10th in the event but moved up to ninth overall.
In the javelin, Hardee's mark of 57.00m (187-00.00) on his first attempt was his only legal throw and he placed seventh. Murphy’s best mark in the event (46.30m, 151-11.00) came on his second throw and he finished 15th.
In the final decathlon event, Murphy ran a 4:48.74 for 12th in the 1500m and added 626 points to bring him to his end tally of 7,368. Hardee finished in 5:08.67 and 13th to earn his final 511 points.
In the shot put preliminaries, Jacob Thormaehlen threw a fourth-place earning 19.81 (65-00.00) to advance to Sunday’s event finals. Thormaehlen was coming off a seventh-place finish in the event at the NCAA Outdoor Championships that earned him All-America honors in his final season as a Longhorn.
“My throws were good, nice and balanced, and I got to be able to put a little bit on the ball, so it worked out well,” Thormaehlen said. “I just came in here pretty relaxed. A lot of people were saying that with these big guys, I didn’t have a chance to make it to the finals. I just came in here with an open mind and tried to get in a good position and get a good throw off.”
Rising senior Hayden Baillio also competed in the shot put prelims. His best mark of the day (17.47, 57-03.75) came on his third attempt and he finished 18th.
In the high jump preliminaries, former Longhorn Andra Manson cleared 2.15m (7-00.50) on his third attempt but was unable to improve on that mark. He finished the event in 16th place.
Results: Saturday, June 23
Decathlon 110m Hurdles
Decathlon Pole Vault
High Jump (prelims)