For the fifth straight IAAF World Championship, Jenny Simpson will be racing in the 1,500-meters final as she won the second head of the semifinals on Thursday at Khalifa International Stadium in Doha, Qatar
Simpson finished in 4 minutes, 0.99 seconds to earn her trip to the finals, edging Canada’s Gabriela Debues-Stafford, who ran 4:01.04. The finals are set for Saturday, Oct. 5, at 11:55 a.m. MT. It will be televised live on Olympic Channel.
“I felt so good,” she said. “And we ran 4:00. I came to run and I’m so ready for this final. I won the first round and now the semi and it means nothing on Saturday. It all starts over.”
The second heat ran faster than the first; it was obvious from the start it would not be as slow as the first where the winning time was 4:14. Simpson did not waste time and went to the front of the pack. By the time the field went through the first 200, she was fourth.
The field started to string out a bit around the midway point, at which time Simpson was fifth overall on the inside. She continued to run a very controlled race and as the field rounded the last curve, she accelerates and took the narrow win.
All three Americans qualified for the finals. Shelby Houlihan was second in the first heat (4:14.91) to earn an automatic berth, while Nikki Hiltz finished seventh in Simpson’s heat to earn the second of two time qualifiers in 4:01.52.
“The USA is rolling,” Simpson said. “I’ve been on a long journey now and it’s a whole new world. I’m really proud to still be a part of it.”