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Athletics at the 2008 Beijing Summer Games:

Men's 4 × 100 metres Relay

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Events:
Phases:

Host City: Beijing, China
Venue(s): Beijing National Stadium, Beijing
Date Started: August 21, 2008
Date Finished: August 22, 2008

Gold: JAM Jamaica
Silver: TTO Trinidad and Tobago
Bronze: JPN Japan

Summary

For one of the few times in Olympic history, the United States was not favored in the short relay, as Jamaica had all the cards. Usain Bolt had already won the 100 and 200 in world record times, and his teammate, Asafa Powell, was the 100 world-record holder coming into 2008. Aided by Nesta Carter and Michael Frater, it was thought that only poor baton passing could get the US ahead of the Caribbean powerhouse. But the US team never even got the chance. In the first heat of round one, Darvis Patton ran the third leg for the US and was leading as he went to hand-off to Tyson Gay. But the two dropped the baton and the US was out of the heat and the final. This left the way open for Jamaica to run virtually uncontested, though it is highly unlikely the US could have beaten Jamaica in the final, even at their absolute best. Jamaica dominated the final, shattering the previous world record of 37.40, to record 37.10. Bolt ran the third leg on the curve, clocking an estimated 9.0 around the turn, and Asafa Powell’s anchor was timed by tafnuts in 8.7. This gave Bolt his third sprint gold medal of the Beijing Olympics, all in world record time, a feat which had never been performed at the Olympics.

Final Standings

Rank Team NOC Medal
1 Jamaica JAM Gold
2 Trinidad and Tobago TTO Silver
3 Japan JPN Bronze
4 Brazil BRA
5 Germany GER
6 Canada CAN
AC r2/2 China CHN
AC r2/2 Netherlands NED
5 h2 r1/2 Thailand THA
6 h2 r1/2 France FRA
AC h1 r1/2 Nigeria NGR
AC h1 r1/2 Poland POL
AC h1 r1/2 South Africa RSA
AC h1 r1/2 United States USA
AC h2 r1/2 Great Britain GBR
AC h2 r1/2 Italy ITA