Sept. 24, 2000

SYDNEY, Australia - Danny McFarlane finished second in his semifinal heat today to advance to the final in the 400-meter dash at the Olympic Games at Olympic Stadium. McFarlane ran a time of 45.38 to finish second to Antonio Pettigrew of the United States in the second semifinal heat run on Sunday. Alvin Harrison of the U.S. posted the best semifinal time (44.53), edging defending champion Michael Johnson by .12 seconds (44.65) in the first heat. The 400-meter dash final is scheduled for 8:25 p.m. Sydney time on Monday.

McFarlane's time was the seventh fastest in semifinal action. The former Sooner has dropped his 400 time every race he has competed in the Olympics. He finished second in his opening round heat with a time of 45.84, then finished fourth in his heat of the second round with a 45.40 to advance to the semifinals.

He will run in lane 3 next to the Harrison, the fastest qualifier. Pettigrew will be in lane 5 with Johnson in lane 6.

McFarlane's career best in the 400 is 44.90 and he ran a season best of 45.26 earlier this year. Former Sooner coach J.D. Martin continues to coach McFarlane. He finished second in the 400-meter dash at the Jamaican Olympic Trials held in July at the National Stadium in Kingston, Jamaica.

McFarlane, who last competed for OU in 1997, was an eight-time All-American for the Sooners and was a member of the Sooners' indoor 1600-meter relay national champion in 1997. Competing as a member of the Jamaican National team, he earned a silver medal on the 4 x 400-meter relay at the 1995 World Championships, a bronze at the 1997 World Championships and a bronze at the 1999 World Championships, both as a member of the 1600-meter relay. He also competed for Jamaica in the 1993 World Championships as a member of the 1600-meter relay.

McFarlane and another former Sooner, Michael Blackwood, are scheduled to team on Jamaica's 1600-meter relay which begins competition Friday with the final set for Saturday. Jamaica has been picked as a possible silver medalist in the 1600-meter relay.