09 AUG 1997
Event Report Women 100m Hurdles
The 1996 Olympic champion and 1991 world champion (as Lyudmila Narozhilenko, representing the URS), Sweden’s Ludmila Engquist won the first ever gold medal for a female athlete from her country by taking the 100m hurdles in a season’s best of 12.50, the second best performance of the year.
The race had 3 false starts, 2 from the 1996 Olympic bronze medallist, France’s Patricia Girard, costing her a disqualification, and the other from the 1996 silver medallist, Slovenia’s Brigita Bukovec.
In the definitive start, Jamaican Michelle Freeman got to the initial hurdle first. Engquist, who didn’t have such a good start, caught her at the fifth obstacle, and the two of them, along with the 1997 world leader, Bulgarian Svetla Dimitrova, ran a very even race.
After the last obstacle Engquist was clearly ahead, with Freeman in second place, but Dimitrova had a very strong finish, and took the silver medal away. Dimitrova’s time was 12.58, her second performance of 1997, after she ran 12.36 in Bulgaria.
Bukovec was fourth in a season’s best of 12.69, and Jamaican Dianne Rose was fifth with 12.87.