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Athletics at the 1992 Barcelona Summer Games

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Sports:

Host City: Barcelona, Spain
Date Started: July 31, 1992
Date Finished: August 8, 1992
Events: 43

Participants: 1,726 (1,104 men and 621 women) from 156 countries
Youngest Participant: KEN Lydia Cheromei (15 years, 83 days)
Oldest Participant: CRC Luis López (43 years, 24 days)
Most Medals (Athlete): USA Gwen Torrence (3 medals)
Most Medals (Country): USA United States (30 medals)

Overview

The Barcelona Olympic track & field was held in Estadi Olímpic high above the city, on Montjuïc. The competitions were marked by upsets with several favorites failing to come thru. Sergey Bubka was a heavy favorite in the pole vault but he no-heighted and had no placement. Algeria’s Noureddine Morceli was favored in the 1,500 but he ran poorly in the final and placed seventh, with Spanish favorite Fermín Cacho winning gold. Americans Danny Everett (400) and Michael Johnson (200) failed to even make the finals in their events. One favorite who did win was Jackie Joyner-Kersee, who won the heptathlon easily, defending her title from Seoul. JJK also competed in the long jump, winning a bronze medal.

There were two very poignant and meaningful moments on the track. In the men’s 400 metres, Briton Derek Redmond started in the semi-finals, after winning his heat and quarter. But he pulled up on the backstretch and fell with a hamstring injury. He got up and started hobbling, trying to at least finish his Olympic appearance. Suddenly his father appeared from the stands, getting past security, and ran to his side. Redmond, in obvious pain, was supported by his father, placing his arm around his shoulder. He hobbled into the finish line. His father later commented that they had started this together and they would finish it together.

In the women’s 10,000 metres, the gold medal was won by Ethiopian Derartu Tuluu. It was the first distance running gold for an African woman, after decades of dominance by the men. But on the 10th lap, Tulu and South African Elana Meyer broke open the race and ran together for the last 15 laps, winning gold and silver. South Africa had been banned from the Olympics since 1964 and only returned in Barcelona. The ban had been because South Africa had not allowed their blacks equal opportunity in sports. The irony could not be missed that a black African ran alongside a white South African on their return to the Olympic Stadium. At the end of the race, Tulu and Meyer embraced.

Medalists

Event Gold Silver Bronze
Men's 100 metres GBR Linford Christie NAM Frankie Fredericks USA Dennis Mitchell
Men's 200 metres USA Mike Marsh NAM Frankie Fredericks USA Michael Bates
Men's 400 metres USA Quincy Watts USA Steve Lewis KEN Samson Kitur
Men's 800 metres KEN William Tanui KEN Nixon Kiprotich USA Johnny Gray
Men's 1,500 metres ESP Fermín Cacho MAR Rachid El-Basir QAT Mohamed Sulaiman
Men's 5,000 metres GER Dieter Baumann KEN Paul Bitok ETH Fita Bayissa
Men's 10,000 metres MAR Khalid Skah KEN Richard Chelimo ETH Addis Abebe
Men's Marathon KOR Hwang Yeong-Jo JPN Koichi Morishita GER Stephan Freigang
Men's 110 metres Hurdles CAN Mark McKoy USA Tony Dees USA Jack Pierce
Men's 400 metres Hurdles USA Kevin Young JAM Winthrop Graham GBR Kriss Akabusi
Men's 3,000 metres Steeplechase KEN Matthew Birir KEN Patrick Sang KEN William Mutwol
Men's 4 × 100 metres Relay USA United States NGR Nigeria CUB Cuba
Men's 4 × 400 metres Relay USA United States CUB Cuba GBR Great Britain
Men's 20 kilometres Walk ESP Daniel Plaza CAN Guillaume LeBlanc ITA Giovanni De Benedictis
Men's 50 kilometres Walk EUN Andrey Perlov MEX Carlos Mercenario GER Ronald Weigel
Men's High Jump CUB Javier Sotomayor SWE Patrik Sjöberg AUS Tim Forsyth
POL Artur Partyka
USA Hollis Conway
Men's Pole Vault EUN Maksim Tarasov EUN Igor Trandenkov ESP Javier García
Men's Long Jump USA Carl Lewis USA Mike Powell USA Joe Greene
Men's Triple Jump USA Mike Conley USA Charlie Simpkins BAH Frank Rutherford
Men's Shot Put USA Mike Stulce USA Jim Doehring EUN Vyacheslav Lykho
Men's Discus Throw LTU Romas Ubartas GER Jürgen Schult CUB Roberto Moya
Men's Hammer Throw EUN Andrey Abduvaliyev EUN Igor Astapkovich EUN Igor Nikulin
Men's Javelin Throw TCH Jan Železný FIN Seppo Räty GBR Steve Backley
Men's Decathlon TCH Robert Změlík ESP Antonio Peñalver USA Dave Johnson
Women's 100 metres USA Gail Devers JAM Juliet Cuthbert EUN Irina Privalova
Women's 200 metres USA Gwen Torrence JAM Juliet Cuthbert JAM Merlene Ottey-Page
Women's 400 metres FRA Marie-José Pérec EUN Olha Bryzhina COL Ximena Restrepo
Women's 800 metres NED Ellen van Langen EUN Liliya Nurutdinova CUB Ana Fidelia Quirot
Women's 1,500 metres ALG Hassiba Boulmerka EUN Lyudmila Rogachova CHN Qu Yunxia
Women's 3,000 metres EUN Yelena Romanova EUN Tetiana Samolenko-Dorovskykh CAN Angela Chalmers
Women's 10,000 metres ETH Derartu Tulu RSA Elana Meyer USA Lynn Jennings
Women's Marathon EUN Valentina Yegorova JPN Yuko Arimori NZL Lorraine Moller
Women's 100 metres Hurdles GRE Voula Patoulidou USA LaVonna Martin BUL Yordanka Donkova
Women's 400 metres Hurdles GBR Sally Gunnell USA Sandra Farmer-Patrick USA Janeene Vickers
Women's 4 × 100 metres Relay USA United States EUN Unified Team NGR Nigeria
Women's 4 × 400 metres Relay EUN Unified Team USA United States GBR Great Britain
Women's 10 kilometres Walk CHN Chen Yueling EUN Yelena Nikolayeva CHN Li Chunxiu
Women's High Jump GER Heike Redetzky-Henkel ROU Alina Astafei CUB Ioamnet Quintero
Women's Long Jump GER Heike Drechsler EUN Inesa Kravets USA Jackie Joyner-Kersee
Women's Shot Put EUN Svetlana Krivelyova CHN Huang Zhihong GER Kathrin Neimke
Women's Discus Throw CUB Maritza Martén BUL Tsvetanka Khristova AUS Daniela Costian
Women's Javelin Throw GER Silke Renk EUN Nataliya Shikolenko GER Karen Forkel
Women's Heptathlon USA Jackie Joyner-Kersee EUN Irina Belova GER Sabine Braun