Twotime World Champion Colin Jackson began his two-day retirement party in fine fashion with a 7.56 heat win, ahead of a pair of 19-year-olds, Ladji Doucouré of France (7.61) and Liu Xiang of China (7.63).
The day’s fastest heat was won by European outdoor silver medallist, Stanislav Olijar of Latvia (7.50), as Sydney champion Anier García (7.56), safely in second place, saw no reason to push for a faster time.
Allen Johnson of the US, the world leader this season, was even more relaxed than García, almost slowing to a walk after the final hurdle for 7.74 to win the final heat against Finland’s Matti Niemi (7.77).
Robert Kronberg of Sweden won the remaining heat in 7.68, the same time given to runner-up Elmar Lichtenegger of Austria, last year’s European indoor silver medallist.
Others moving forward to today’s semifinal round include Commonwealth champion Shaun Bownes of South Africa (7.73), and Edmonton bronze medallist Dudley Dorival of Haiti (7.81).