Brian Gregan produces the second best run of his career to qualify for 400m semi-finals
Brian Gregan lifted the spirits of the Irish team at the World Championships in London with a superb third-place finish in his 400m heat this morning, the 27-year-old Dubliner clocking the second fastest time of his life, 45.37, to qualify automatically in third place.
The race was won by Steven Gardiner of the Bahamas in 44.75, with Wilbert London of the US second in 45.10, while Gregan moved from sixth to third over the second half of the race to claim the final automatic qualifying spot in third.
“To run 45.3 at 11 in the morning, never in my wildest dreams did I think I could do that,” said Gregan, who competed in front of more than 50,000 fans in a packed London Stadium. “It’s unbelievable out there. The cheer from the crowd was ridiculous. I may never experience anything like that again.”
Gregan’s run provided a well-timed boost for the Irish team after Ciara Mageean crashed out of the women’s 1500m when she finished 13th in her heat last night, and the Clonliffe athlete will now take his place in the 400m semi-finals at 7:40pm tomorrow evening.
“Everything from here is a bonus,” said Gregan. “Me on my best day and a couple of people on a bad day, it’s possible [to make the final]. My plan is to get out, get into a race, and finish strong. If people mess up, I’m there to pounce.”