The women’s 800 meters was expected to be a slam-bang race, one of the more anticipated in this week’s U.S. Olympic trials in Eugene, Ore. It was all of that on Monday, except there was too much slam and bang. And casualties. And heartbreak.
A collision in the final curve took out two of the race favorites, Alysia Montano and Brenda Martinez, allowing Kate Grace to cruise through on the inside, unscathed, to claim the upset victory. Grace finished in 1:59.10, ahead of Ajee Wilson (1:59.51) and Chrishuna Williams (1:59.59).
The collision also knocked Molly Ludlow and Raevyn Rogers off stride, perhaps slowing their stretch runs, and they finished fourth and fifth. Ludlow was .04 behind Williams.
Officials reviewed the tape and deemed the smash-up a result of incidental contact. They did not disqualify anyone. Asked if she would protest, Montano replied: “What good would that do me?”
Grace, 27, who was an All-American at Yale, had shown the ability to finish strong throughout the earlier rounds. She took full advantage in the final.
Wilson, 22, has been the best…