Olympics athletics top tips: Five best bets for August 17-18
Jamie Clark, Sports Editor | August 15, 2016
August 17-18 Olympics athletics top tips
The track and field action just keeps on coming from Brazil. What are the midweek Olympics athletics top tips for Wednesday and Thursday?
Coral experts highlight the best bets, including a fourfold, treble and potential Czech double. Read on and you’ll see what’s on offer…
Men’s fourfold acca: Steeplechase, Decathlon, Shot Put, 200m
If you fancy a bet over the two days, then a fantastic fourfold featuring some huge names in track and field could be worth a wager…
One man has dominated the 10-discipline Decathlon in recent years; Ashton Eaton. He’s the world record holder and the American has won every major competition since London 2012. Eaton is a firm odds-on 1/10 favourite to repeat at the Olympics, but is a banker bet to start this fourfold off.
Ezekiel Kemboi, meanwhile, is a four-time world champion and twice winner of the Olympics Steeplechase, and he’s played in very cool this season going into Wednesday’s final.
Fellow Kenyan athlete Conseslus Kipruto is the favourite for this event, but simply doesn’t have Kemboi’s pedigree and that makes a 2/1 price terrific value.
Returning to Americans, world Shot Put leader Joe Kovacs has recorded three throws over 22m this season.
Now looking to add an Olympics victory to his world title from last year, Kovac is odds-on at 8/11 to do so and hold off the challenge of compatriot Ryan Crouser.
Last and by no means least, Usain Bolt is in pole position to complete his third Olympics double in individual sprinting with yet another 200m win. He’s got Justin Gatlin’s number.
Odds-on at 1/12, Bolt makes another anchor leg of our fabulous fourfold – a £3 stake on which will return £18.51, which means more than five times profit if it comes off*.
Wednesday women’s treble: Long Jump, 200m, 100m Hurdles
It’s all about the top female talents on Wednesday, with an women’s treble featuring a field final and two on the track. The first leg of this is backing world leader Brittney Reese at evens to win the Long Jump.
The American is defending champion in this Olympics event and went out to a massive 7m 31cm during the US trials in July. As the only woman to twice jump beyond 7m this season, Reese is impossible to oppose.
Moving on to the 200m, it is well worth backing world champion Dafne Schippers at 5/4 to bounce back with Gold from her disappointing fifth place finish in the shorter sprint.
This talented Dutchwoman is a former Heptathlon competitor, even winning Bronze at the World Athletics Championships in Moscow three years ago, and that core strength gives her a huge advantage when running the bend.
Having recorded four faster times this season (including the world lead of 21.93 seconds) than Elaine Thompson, who beat her to 100m glory, Schippers is worth giving another chance by punters among Olympics athletics top tips.
Finally, we come to the sprint hurdles over 100m and 2013 world champion Brianna Rollins. With new world record holder Kendra Harrison and London 2012 winner Sally Pearson among those missing in this discipline, this is the American’s time to shine.
Take the consistent Harrison out because she flopped at the US trials and didn’t make their Olympics team, and you’re left with Rollins as the only woman to go under 12.5 seconds over the 100m hurdles this season. It’s the major reason why Rollins is 4/9 favourite for Gold.
A £4 punt on Reese, Schippers and Rollins returns £26, so that means the women’s treble is available at combined 11/2 odds*.
World record holder Barbora Spotakova has been a mainstay of this event for many years, and is the only competing athlete in Rio to have thrown over 66m 50cm this season.
Although that is way down on her personal best, a mammoth 72m 28cm set in 2008, the Czech’s opposition in the field remains poor. With two of the four legal throws beyond 66m, Spotakova looks like becoming a three-time champion at the Olympics.
Bearing all this mind, it is amazing to see Spotakova odds against at 6/4 before Javelin qualifying begins. Take this price before it goes!
Women’s 400m Hurdles
Since winning Bronze at London 2012, Zuzana Hejnova has added two world titles to her honours around a lap of the obstacles. Like fellow Czech athlete Spotakova, Hejnova has had a pretty low key season, but could use that to her advantage.
While Dalilah Muhammad smashed her personal best this season, the American rarely turns up to a major championships with just a Silver behind Hejnova in Moscow three years ago her only senior medal.
It is for that reason that even-money favourite Muhammad is worth taking on, especially as Hejnova holds nifty odds of 9/4 and must be considered among Olympics athletics top tips.
Should you seek to combine Spotakova and Hejnova in an all-Czech double, a £2 wager will return £16.26 at odds of more than 7/1*!
LaShawn Merritt to win a medal in Men’s 200m
With three 200m times under 19.8 seconds this season, including the world lead, 400m Bronze medallist Merritt may actually fare better round half a lap of the track.
Doubling up has been rare in the American’s career, perhaps because of his drugs ban. While a 2/1 price to win the 200m without Bolt and Gatlin is tempting, it’s a safer bet to take the 11/8 on offer for Merritt to get another medal when running the bend.
*Please note, all quoted odds above are correct prior to the events starting. Track competitions can have up to three rounds and field ones tend to have qualifying before the final.
You’ll find more recommended bets for the Olympic Games on the Coral news athletics page.