World Champs Steeple Round 1: Mahiedine Mekhissi-Benabbad Makes An Ass Of Himself, Americans Bomb by: LetsRun.com
August 16, 2009
The story of the Round 1 of the men's steeplechase was France's Mahiedine Mekhissi-Benabbad - the Olympic silver medalist - dropping out with a lap to go in his heat and grabbing his leg.
Mekhissi-Benabbad is known for being super-emotional. He celebrated a full 100 meters DURING his Paris Golden League win this year. After today's heat, he was super-pissed. He came through the media area at least 10 minutes after his race and he was still angry. He threw a water bottle against the wall. He then stormed through the media maze and we captured it on the video below.
We don't understand French but apparently he says, "Don't talk to me. You are going to say I pretend to be injured."
All the other favorites easily advanced.
The American men had a horrible day. Kyle Alcorn fell back three minutes into his race and soon dropped out. Josh McAdams fell back early in his race and didn't break nine minutes (Josh in the interview below indicated he suffered an injury recently). That left Dan Huling. Huling tried early leading and with Jamel Chatbi of Morocco opened up a 10-meter gap on the field. He then quickly faded out the back to finish last in 8:46. He had no explanation for the run except for possibly needing
a new warmup strategy for Worlds.
All four Kenyans advanced, looking good. With Mekhissi-Benabbad out, a Kenyan sweep of the medals looks more probable.