Sifan Hassan fell during her 1,500 meter heat — and still managed to finished first

Dutch runner Sifan Hassan and Kenya’s Edinah Jebitok trip and fall during a 1,500 meter heat on August 2. (Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)

Dutch runner Sifan Hassan began her bid for an unprecedented distance triple crown on Monday, and it got off to a wild start.

With a lap to go in Hassan’s 1,500 meter heat, the runner in front of her tripped and fell. Hassan then fell over her, and it looked like her attempt to make history was in peril.

Kenyan runner Edinah Jebitok falls, tripping Sifan Hassan during a 1,500 meter heat on Monday.
Kenyan runner Edinah Jebitok falls, tripping Sifan Hassan during a 1,500 meter heat on Monday. (Michael Steele/Getty Images)

But Hassan was able to quickly get back up and start running. Then she turned on the jets.

As the heat drew to its close, she had surpassed most of the field. By the final leg, she was, somehow, back in contention.

Sifan Hassan crosses the line to finish first during a 1,500 meter heat on Monday.
Sifan Hassan crosses the line to finish first during a 1,500 meter heat on Monday. (Phil Noble/Reuters)

In the final steps, Hassan surged ahead and managed to win the heat in a photo finish. She ran the 1500 meters — just under a mile — in 4:05.17, despite falling midway through.

Hassan will go for her first gold medal tonight in Tokyo in the women’s 5,000 meter final.

Dutch runner Sifan Hassan celebrates after winning her 1,500-meter heat on Monday.
Dutch runner Sifan Hassan celebrates after winning her 1,500-meter heat on Monday. (Lucy Nicholson/Reuters)