Marcell Jacobs defends European crown but Olympics qualification still elusive

Marcell Jacobs is the first Italian in history to reach an Olympic 100m final and win the gold medal

Marcell Jacobs defends European crown but Olympics qualification still elusive

Joel Omotto 12:10 - 09.06.2024

Olympic 100m champion Marcell Jacobs retained his European title but he has still not hit the Paris Olympic qualifying mark with three weeks to ho before the deadline.

Olympic 100m champion Marcell Jacobs may have defended his European crown but he still has not qualified for the Paris 2024 Games.

The Italian clocked 10.02 to win the European 100m title for the second straight time but his time was 0.2 seconds slower than the 10.00 seconds required to seal his place in Paris.

It means the defending champion has not yet secured his Olympics ticket, three weeks before the June 30 deadline, and is in a race against time to get the required standard.

The US-based sprinter is, however, unfazed and remains confident of getting over the line before the deadline.

“The times are not what’s important in these competitions, it’s the result that counts,” Jacobs said after the race.

“The goal is to be in my best form in two months when it counts even more and I know that I still have a lot of work to do.

“Considering how I felt in the semifinal, we had calculated that I could have ran between 9.92 and 9.95. So when I saw the display I wasn’t very happy. But at the same time, as I said, medals count more than times. Medals remain forever,” added Jacobs, who clocked 10.05 in the semifinal.

Jacobs won the race ahead of Italian compatriot Chituru Ali, who claimed silver in a personal-best 10.05, while Britain’s Romell Glave clinched bronze in 10.06.

There was a moment of concern when he held his hamstring while appearing to limp after the race with fears that the injuries that have plagued him since his Olympics win had returned.

“I had three goals entering this season; to stay healthy, to defend my European title and to win at the Olympics again. So far so good,” added Jacobs, who said it was just cramp.

Jacobs, who succeeded Usain Bolt as the Olympics champion clocked 9.80 to win gold in Tokyo, but has struggled to hit those lofty standards with his last sub-10 seconds run coming in August 2022 when he timed 9.95 at the European championships in Munich, Germany.