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Athletics at the 2000 Sydney Summer Games

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Host City: Sydney, Australia
Date Started: September 22, 2000
Date Finished: September 30, 2000
Events: 46

Participants: 2,137 (1,257 men and 880 women) from 193 countries
Youngest Participant: TOG Direma Banasso (14 years, 298 days)
Oldest Participant: GBR Chris Maddocks (43 years, 186 days)
Most Medals (Athlete): 13 athletes with 2 medals
Most Medals (Country): USA United States (16 medals)

Overview

The Sydney Olympics was a sublime two weeks down under, and when IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch proclaimed them the greatest Games ever at the Closing Ceremony, few would disagree. But strangely, the track & field competition did not stand out in 2000. The big star of athletics probably occurred not in the stadium but on the roads. Polish walker Robert Korzeniowski defended his title in the 50 km. walk, and also won the 20 km. title, the first time that double has been achieved at the Olympics. Korzeniowski would return in 2004 to win the 50 km. for the third consecutive time. One noteworthy item concerned the women’s program. Women competed in the pole vault and hammer throw at Sydney, and with the 20 km. walk on the program now, women had almost an equal program to the men, lacking only a second walk event, and the steeplechase.

To the Australians, the star of the show was also a woman – Cathy Freeman. Freeman was of Aboriginal ancestry and Australian planned to make a show during the Sydney Olympics that they were now treating the original Australians well. Freeman was chosen to light the torch at the Opening Ceremony. She did so and then during the Olympics, won the 400 metres. She is the only Olympic athlete to have won a gold medal and lit the torch at the same Olympics.

Michael Johnson (USA) and Haile Gebrselassie (ETH) defended their titles in the 400 and 10K. A big upset occurred in the 1,500 when favored Hicham El Guerrouj (MAR) finished second behind Kenyan Noah Ngeny. Jan Železný (CZE) won his third consecutive gold medal in the javelin, adding a silver from Seoul in 1988. Derartu Tulu (ETH) won the women’s 10K, which she had also won in 1992. On the field, Heike Drechsler-Daute won a second long jump gold medal, adding to the one she had from 1992.

Medalists

Event Gold Silver Bronze
Men's 100 metres USA Maurice Greene TTO Ato Boldon BAR Obadele Thompson
Men's 200 metres GRE Kostas Kenteris GBR Darren Campbell TTO Ato Boldon
Men's 400 metres USA Michael Johnson USA Alvin Harrison JAM Greg Haughton
Men's 800 metres GER Nils Schumann DEN Wilson Kipketer ALG Djabir Saïd-Guerni
Men's 1,500 metres KEN Noah Ngeny MAR Hicham El Guerrouj KEN Bernard Lagat
Men's 5,000 metres ETH Million Wolde ALG Ali Saïdi-Sief MAR Brahim Lahlafi
Men's 10,000 metres ETH Haile Gebrselassie KEN Paul Tergat ETH Assefa Mezgebu
Men's Marathon ETH Gezahgne Abera KEN Eric Wainaina ETH Tesfaye Tola
Men's 110 metres Hurdles CUB Anier García USA Terrence Trammell USA Mark Crear
Men's 400 metres Hurdles USA Angelo Taylor KSA Hadi Soua'an Al-Somaily RSA Llewellyn Herbert
Men's 3,000 metres Steeplechase KEN Reuben Kosgei KEN Wilson Boit Kipketer MAR Ali Ezzine
Men's 4 × 100 metres Relay USA United States BRA Brazil CUB Cuba
Men's 4 × 400 metres Relay NGR Nigeria JAM Jamaica BAH Bahamas
Men's 20 kilometres Walk POL Robert Korzeniowski MEX Noé Hernández RUS Vladimir Andreyev
Men's 50 kilometres Walk POL Robert Korzeniowski LAT Aigars Fadejevs MEX Joel Sánchez
Men's High Jump RUS Sergey Klyugin CUB Javier Sotomayor ALG Abderrahmane Hammad
Men's Pole Vault USA Nick Hysong USA Lawrence Johnson RUS Maksim Tarasov
Men's Long Jump CUB Iván Pedroso AUS Jai Taurima UKR Roman Shchurenko
Men's Triple Jump GBR Jonathan Edwards CUB Yoel García RUS Denis Kapustin
Men's Shot Put FIN Arsi Harju USA Adam Nelson USA John Godina
Men's Discus Throw LTU Virgilijus Alekna GER Lars Riedel RSA Frantz Kruger
Men's Hammer Throw POL Szymon Ziółkowski ITA Nicola Vizzoni BLR Igor Astapkovich
Men's Javelin Throw CZE Jan Železný GBR Steve Backley RUS Sergey Makarov
Men's Decathlon EST Erki Nool CZE Roman Šebrle USA Chris Huffins
Women's 100 metres GRE Aikaterini Thanou
JAM Tayna Lawrence
JAM Merlene Ottey-Page
Women's 200 metres BAH Pauline Davis-Thompson SRI Susanthika Jayasinghe JAM Beverly McDonald
Women's 400 metres AUS Cathy Freeman JAM Lorraine Graham GBR Katharine Merry
Women's 800 metres MOZ Maria Mutola AUT Steffi Graf GBR Kelly Holmes
Women's 1,500 metres ALG Nouria Mérah-Benida ROU Violeta Beclea-Szekely ROU Gabriela Szabo
Women's 5,000 metres ROU Gabriela Szabo IRL Sonia O'Sullivan ETH Gete Wami
Women's 10,000 metres ETH Derartu Tulu ETH Gete Wami POR Fernanda Ribeiro
Women's Marathon JPN Naoko Takahashi ROU Lidia Şimon KEN Joyce Chepchumba
Women's 100 metres Hurdles KAZ Olga Shishigina NGR Glory Alozie USA Melissa Morrison
Women's 400 metres Hurdles RUS Irina Privalova JAM Deon Hemmings MAR Nezha Bidouane
Women's 4 × 100 metres Relay BAH Bahamas JAM Jamaica USA United States
Women's 4 × 400 metres Relay USA United States JAM Jamaica RUS Russia
Women's 20 kilometres Walk CHN Wang Liping NOR Kjersti Tysse-Plätzer ESP María Vascó
Women's High Jump RUS Yelena Yelesina RSA Hestrie Storbeck-Cloete ROU Oana Muşunoi-Pantelimon
SWE Kajsa Bergqvist
Women's Pole Vault USA Stacy Dragila AUS Tatiana Grigorieva ISL Vala Flosadóttir
Women's Long Jump GER Heike Drechsler ITA Fiona May RUS Tatyana Kotova
Women's Triple Jump BUL Tereza Marinova RUS Tatyana Lebedeva UKR Olena Hovorova
Women's Shot Put BLR Yanina Provalinskaya-Karolchik RUS Larisa Peleshenko GER Astrid Kumbernuss
Women's Discus Throw BLR Ellina Zvereva GRE Anastasia Kelesidou BLR Irina Yatchenko
Women's Hammer Throw POL Kamila Skolimowska RUS Olga Kuzenkova GER Kirsten Münchow
Women's Javelin Throw NOR Trine Solberg-Hattestad GRE Mirela Maniani-Tzelili CUB Osleidys Menéndez
Women's Heptathlon GBR Denise Lewis RUS Yelena Prokhorova BLR Natasha Sazanovich