Lolo Jones competes in 100m hurdles semi-finals at the U.S. Olympic athletics trials in Eugene (Photo : Reuters)
For Lori "Lolo" Jones, the 2012 London Summer Olympics is redemption after her disappointing performance at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
The 30-year-old from Des Moines finished seventh in the 100-meter Hurdles in 2008 after stumbling on a hurdle. Before the trip, she was leading in first place.
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The road to redemption started today in the first round of the 100-meter Hurdles, where Jones competed in the last heat to qualify for the semifinals. Jones finished her heat in 12.68 seconds, the fastest in her heat but overall second fastest to Australia's Sally Pearson, with a time of 12.57 seconds. Fellow American Kellie Wells, in heat three, had the third fastest time with 12.69 seconds, just .01 slower than Jones.
The semifinals start Tues., Aug. 7, at 2:15 p.m. EDT.
In the semifinals, Jones will compete in the same heat with Pearson. At the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the Australian won silver, but won gold at the 2011 World Championships in Daegu, South Korea, and recently won in the 2012 Diamond League in France and Norway for the 100-meter Hurdles.
Pearson isn't the only athlete blocking her road to victory, with fellow American Dawn Harper, the defending gold medalist in the 100-meter Hurdles at 2008 Beijing Olympics.
For Jones to complete the road of redemption, she'll have to place for the final of the 100-meter Hurdles, also set for tomorrow, but at 4 p.m. EDT.
Bookies have Jones as the third favorite to win, behind Wells, and with Pearson the clear favorite to win.
Outside of the racing track, Jones has garnered attention on her views on pre-marital sex. Jones has stated she remains to say a virgin until marriage.
Jones commented, "It's just something, a gift that I want to give to my husband. But please understand this journey has been hard. If there's virgins out there, I just want to let them know, it's the hardest thing I've ever done in my life. Harder than training for the Olympics, harder than graduating from college, has been to stay a virgin before marriage."
Lolo Jones Olympic Schedule
Semifinals: August 7, 2:15 p.m. EDT
Final: August 7, 4 p.m. EDT (If qualified)