Andrew Riley to Compete at First Olympic Games
July 1, 2012
KINGSTON, Jamaica - Former Illinois men's track and field hurdler Andrew Riley earned his way to his first Olympic Games in London after qualifying in the 110m hurdles on Saturday night in his hometown of Kingston, Jamaica. The first round of the 110m hurdles will take place August 7 with the semifinals and finals happening the following day, August 8.
Riley won his heat with the fastest mark overall and recorded a time of 13.36 to move into the finals later Saturday night. In the finals, Riley finished second with a new personal-best time of 13.19 to qualify for the Olympic Games in a few weeks. He will join Hansle Parchment (13.18) and Richard Phillips (13.43) who finished first and third in the event.
"I'm so happy that Andrew (Riley) is seeing his Olympic dream become reality," head coach Mike Turk said. "A real nice race and new personal best. It will be fun to watch him in London."
Earlier this month, Riley was named a finalist of the Bowerman award, the USTFCCCA National Track Athlete of the Month and also earned the University of Illinois' male Dike Eddleman Athlete of the Year award for the second consecutive year, which is given to the top male athlete in Illinois athletes. The Kingston, Jamaica, native also earned the USTFCCCA's Midwest Region Athlete of the Year award.
Riley ended his career at Illinois as a four-time NCAA champion, which ties him for the most ever in program history. The senior was also the first male in NCAA history to win the 100m and 110m hurdles in the same year, while also being a 12-time Big Ten champion and was named this year's Big Ten Outdoor Track Athlete of the Year and Athlete of the Championships. Riley was also named the 2010 Big Ten Outdoor Track Athlete of the Year and 2009 Big Ten Indoor Freshman of the Year. The senior holds five school records including the 60m, 60m hurdles, 100m, 110m hurdles and 4x100m relay.