Ollie Hoare In 1500m finaldeveloper
Ollie Hoare surges into 1500m final
Oliver Hoare has become Trinity’s first Olympic track finalist with a pugnacious 1500m semi-final run that was cheered on in Sydney at a family gathering including a pet dog – fittingly a pug – dressed in an Australian jersey.
The class of 2015 runner had a moment of concern on the final lap when he slipped from fourth back into the pack.
But he responded with a combative surge in the home straight that guaranteed his place in Saturday night’s final.
With the top five in the 13-man field automatically qualifying, he finished fourth behind Britain’s Jake Wightman.
“It got a little dicey,” he admitted later.
“When you’re racing guys that talented they’re not going to give up that easily but I showed I can hold my strength.
“I had a little bit of inexperience in racing at this level,” the first-time Olympian told Channel Seven.
“I tried to stick to my race plan. I didn’t nail it completely. I got caught up at the back and there was a bit of moving around at fast pace.
“But I made sure I came home. I tried to remain true to my speed.”
Back at home in Caringbah, the US-based runner’s stirring performance was watched by his mum Kate, dad Greg – a former world beach running champion and track runner who got him started in aths – and younger brother and fellow Trinitarian Chris, not to mention the family pug Roger, decked out in green and gold.
“I can’t sit and watch; I was walking around in circles,” said his nervous mum.
“I got worried, but he had a plan and you’ve got to trust that plan.
“I panicked but he knows what he’s doing and you’ve got to trust him.
“We were very proud of him as always.
“The final looks very open. It’s a whole new race.”
Ollie’s time of 3m 34.35 was almost two seconds faster than his first round time but still a couple of seconds outside his personal best.
Coming a night after fellow Aussie Peter Bol’s fourth place in the 800m final, Ollie said: “Australia right now has fantastic middle distance talent and we’re showing it on the world stage.
“We’re trying to do the best we can for Australia, and I hope we can inspire people.”
The 24-year-old, ranked 10th in the world, will now tackle Saturday night’s final at 9.40pm Sydney time along with fellow Australian Stewart McSweyn.
It’s the first time since 1956 that Australia has had two finalists in the event.
“I look forward to it,” said Ollie. “I will enjoy the experience. It’s going to be tough.”