LONDON — Olympic champion Elaine Thompson easily won her first round heat of the women’s 100 metres on Day 2 of the 2017 IAAF World Championships here in London in the Saturday morning session.
Thompson, the world-leader in the event this year and pre-world championships gold medal favourite, jog across the line in 11.05 seconds from lane two under the grey skies and wet track.
The Jamaican won the Olympic 100 and 200m titles last year in Rio, but will only attempt the short dash in London, and she looks like she’s well on track to run at least in the 10.7s again.
Thompson dragged Crystal Emmanuel with her into the semis after the Canadian ran a personal best of 11.14 seconds.
The fastest qualifier from the round races was Germany’s Gina Luckenkemper, who produced a personal best of 10.95 to take heat 1 ahead of the fast finishing Ivorian Murielle Ahouré (11.04) and the quick starting Jura Levy (11.09) of Jamaica.
Marie-Josee Ta Lou of Ivory Coast had the second-best time of 11.00 and she got home ahead of World 200m champion Dafne Schippers of the Netherlands who did 11.08 to advance.
Elsewhere, Olympic 100m silver medallist Tori Bowie of the United States also moved on when she won her first round heat in 11.05 over Nigerian Blessing Okagbare-Ighoteguonor (11.22).
Other medal contenders advancing to the semi-finals were Deajah Stevens of USA and Trinidad and Tobago’s Kelly-Ann Baptiste, while Rosangela Santos of Brazil won the fifth women’s 100m first round heat in 11.04 and Britain’s Daryll Neita won the sixth in 11.15.
Meanwhile, Dutchman Thijmen Kupers is the fastest qualifier from the first round of the men’s 800m after he won his heat in 1:45.53.
World record holder and defending champion David Rudisha is out of the championships, but two other Kenyans, Emmanuel Korir and Ferguson Rotich won their respective first round heats and moved on.