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Athletics at the 1988 Seoul Summer Games:

Women's 4 × 100 metres Relay

Athletics at the 1988 Summer Games: Previous Summer Games ▪ Next Summer Games

Events:
Phases:

Host City: Seoul, South Korea
Venue(s): Olympic Stadium, Seoul Sports Complex, Seoul
Date Started: September 30, 1988
Date Finished: October 1, 1988

Gold: USA United States
Silver: GDR East Germany
Bronze: URS Soviet Union

Summary

The GDR had been the top 4×100 relay team since the late 70s, but the US had defeated them at the 1987 World Championships. And in Seoul, they were led by 100/200 champion Florence Griffith Joyner and 1984 100 gold medalist Evelyn Ashford. They had formidable speed but could not match the superior baton work of the East Germans. In the final, Alice Brown put the US into a slight lead on the opener. But the GDR and the Soviet Union pulled ahead on the second leg. Griffith Joyner was chosen to run the final turn and she got to the final exchange two metres in front. But she and Ashford botched the pass, and the US was in third starting the final 100. Ashford was opposed by her long-time East German rival, Marlies Göhr, and she ran her down for the gold medal. The Soviet anchor, Nataliya Pomoshchnikova, actually took the lead after the final exchange but cramped slightly at 60 metres and had to hold on to finish third.

Final Standings

Rank Team NOC Medal
1 United States USA Gold
2 East Germany GDR Silver
3 Soviet Union URS Bronze
4 West Germany FRG
5 Bulgaria BUL
6 Poland POL
7 France FRA
3 h1 r2/3 Jamaica JAM
5 h1 r2/3 Netherlands NED
5 h2 r2/3 Canada CAN
6 h1 r2/3 Great Britain GBR
6 h2 r2/3 Ghana GHA
7 h1 r2/3 Italy ITA
7 h2 r2/3 China CHN
8 h1 r2/3 Greece GRE
5 h1 r1/3 Colombia COL
6 h1 r1/3 Chinese Taipei TPE
6 h3 r1/3 Uganda UGA
7 h2 r1/3 South Korea KOR