On Friday (10), Terrence Trammell, the American 60 metres Hurdles champion, was suffering with a stomach bug as he prepared for his double challenge at the 11th IAAF World Indoor Championships. Yesterday, he shrugged off any problems to win a bronze medal and this afternoon only gold is on his mind.
The world leader in the hurdles this winter with a time of 7.46 - he has a personal best of 7.42 - is way ahead the rest of the field. Defeat for him in this event would be one of the major surprises of the weekend, with his closest challenger here being Arnold Dominique, his American teammate.
After finishing third in the 60m final, Trammell proved that he is showing no side effects of his illness.
It is a day of eight finals, the first being at 4.15pm when Ethiopian Meseret Defar defends the 3000m title she won in Budapest two years ago. But the competition is hot, and particularly from these shores as Russian duo Liliya Shobukhova and Olesya Syreva both have quicker times than the African over this distance this year.
It could be quite a day for the host nation. In the women’s Triple Jump, Tatyana Lebedeva, the Olympic Long Jump champion, defends her indoor title (she also won the Triple in 2004 but will not defend that title) while Yelena Isinbayeva, the world’s greatest pole vaulter, competes in the final at 6pm (1500GMT). What price another World record from the brilliant star who has taken the indoor mark to 4.91m this year? It should be some event as she faces her Russian rival, and former European Indoor champion, Svetlana Feofanova.
In yesterday’s qualification, Feofanova, sporting a new, longer hair style, looked back to the form which established her on the world scene in 2002 before the arrival of her Russian rival.
She looked fluent in her vaulting and though six women finished with 4.50m, it might be between just two this afternoon.
Kenyan Daniel Kipchirchir Komen has a five second advantage on times over the rest of the field who will line up for the 1500m while the other finals are the men’s high jump, where Russian Yaroslav Rybakov is the favourite, the men’s long jump, where Ghana’s Ignisious Gaisah has the best time in the field for 2006, and the women’s 60m hurdles.
And the Russian flags will be flying in the 800m semi-finals where Yuriy Borzakovskiy, one of the country’s biggest stars and the Olympic champion, should ease through before his expected golden coronation tomorrow.
Then of course this morning we have the start of the two day men's Heptathlon with World Decathlon champion Bryan Clay (USA) beginning what could be another epic competition with defending champion Roman Sebrle (CZE). They were the silver and gold medallists respectively, last time in Budapest.
Richard Lewis for IAAF