LONDON – Former Texas Longhorn Trey Hardee put himself in position for his first Olympic medal with a strong opening day in the decathlon.
Hardee, a two-time world champion in the event, is in second place with 4,441 points after posting a pair of solid times on the track.
Hardee, who trails fellow American Ashton Eaton (4,661), posted the second-fastest time in the 100 meters (10.42) and the third-best effort in the 400 (48.11).
Eaton was the top finisher in three of the five events – the 100, long jump and 400. He set the Olympic decathlon record in the 100 with a time of 10.35.
Hardee, competing in his second Olympics, went 7.53m (24.8.50) in the long jump to tie for seventh and tossed the shot put 15.28 (50-1.75), which was the fifth-best mark of the day. He cleared 1.99 (6-6.25) in the high jump, which was tied for the 10th-best mark of the competition.
Warner Damian of Canada is third (4,386) and Oleksiy Kasyanov of the Ukraine is fourth (4,346).
The final day of competition begins with the 110-meter hurdles at 3 a.m. (CDT) Thursday. The remaining four events will be discus, pole vault, javelin and 1500. Click here for the results of the day of the decathlon.
Hardee was in third place (4,428) after the first day of the decathlon at the 2008 Olympics, but did not clear a bar in the pole vault and withdrew.
He posted 8,383 points at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials, finishing second behind Eaton who set the world record (9,039).
Another former Longhorn, Samyr Laine, will also be in action Thursday. He advanced to finals of the triple jump by finishing sixth in Group A of Tuesday’s qualifying round. Laine leapt 16.81m (55-2.00) on his second of three attempts and was one of seven qualifiers out of the first of two groups.
The triple jump finals are set for 1:20 p.m. (CDT).