© Copyright
Report

Event report Women 4x100 relay heats

The relays began in predictable fashion, with the USA apparently asserted themselves as clear-cut favourites for the final of the women's 4x100m. But they'll have a fight on their hands after France proved their worth this evening by setting a new national record, 42.04.
 
Missing newly crowned duel world champion Kelli WHITE, plus medallist Torri EDWARDS, the Americans clocked 42.03, the fastest time this year. Chryste GAINES set up their heat win, with a blistering run down the back straight in the second leg.
 
The US team in tomorrow's final may be quicker, but the question is, can they exchange the baton as swiftly as they can sprint?
 
France, fielding a strong team which included Christine ARRON and Muriel HURTIS, controlled their changeovers with precision, to finish 1.01 seconds in front of Jamaica who will be strengthened by the addition of Aleen BAILEY. The French appear to be the only team capable of upsetting the USA, and could well take gold in front of their home crowd.
 
Despite fumbling on their final changeover, RUSSIA was the only other team to break 43 seconds, crossing the line in 42.62 to qualify. They look like they could challenge for a minor medal.
 
The UKRAINE won the second heat in a relatively slow 43.26m but can improve in the final with the possible inclusion of last Sunday's 100m bronze medallist, Zhanna BLOCK.