Symmonds Finishes Fifth in Finals of 800-meter Run at World Championships

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

DAEGU, SOUTH KOREA -- Former Willamette University runner Nick Symmonds ('06) took fifth place in the finals of the 800-meter run at the IAAF World Championships on Tuesday, Aug. 30. Symmonds achieved a time of 1:45.12 in the finals. It was his second consecutive top six finish at the World Championships, which are held every two years.

David Lekuta Rudisha from Kenya won the world championship with a time of 1:43.91. Abubaker Kaki of the Sudan was second at 1:44.41 and Yuriy Borzakovskiy from Russia was third in 1:44.49.

Marcin Lewandowski of Poland placed fourth with a time of 1:44.80. Symmonds followed in fifth, while Adam Kszczot of Poland took sixth at 1:45.25 Also competing in the finals were Alfred Kirwa Yego from Kenya, who finished seventh in 1:45.83, and Mohammed Aman of Ethiopia, who took eighth in 1:45.93.

Symmonds earned a sixth place finish in the 800-meter run at the World Championships in 2009. He reached the semifinals of the World Championships in 2007 and also advanced to the semifinals of the Beijing Olympics in 2008.

This year, Symmonds planned to make his final move on the home stretch, but was boxed in on the last curve.

"I didn't think anybody was going to pass me on the curve," Symmonds said. "I thought ... I'm in the exact spot I wanted to be ... Lewandowski came flying around me on my right shoulder. And once he had, it was too late. I was blocked."

While running for Willamette during the 2003 through 2006 track and field seasons, Symmonds achieved four NCAA Division III national championships in the 800-meter run and earned three NCAA titles in the 1,500-meter run.

More recently, while competing for Oregon Track Club Elite, he has won four consecutive U.S. Outdoor Track and Field national championships in the 800. His string of national titles began with a thrilling come-from-behind win at the U.S. Olympic Trials in 2008.

IAAF World Championships

Men's 800-Meter Run
Final Heat


Nick Symmonds ('06) took fifth place in the 800-meter run at the World Championships.

Nick Symmonds ('06) took fifth place in the 800-meter run at the World Championships.