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Athletics at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Summer Games

2016 Summer Games: Previous Summer Games


Host City: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Date Started: August 12, 2016
Date Finished: August 20, 2016
Events: 47

Participants: 2,268 (1,185 men and 1,083 women) from 200 countries
Youngest Participant: UGA Jacob Kiplimo (15 years, 277 days)
Oldest Participant: ESP Jesús Ángel García (46 years, 307 days)
Most Medals (Athlete): 5 athletes with 3 medals
Most Medals (Country): USA United States (32 medals)


Controversy enveloped the 2016 Olympic athletics competition as far back as late 2015. At that time a German television network released a documentary alleging systematic doping in Russia. After investigations by the IAAF, the entire Russian athletic team was suspended from international competition early in 2016. Then, only a few weeks before the Rio Olympics began, an independent report commissioned by WADA, the McLaren Report, corroborated these findings, and many Russian athletes in other sports, notably rowing, were also suspended. The IOC had to quickly rule on this report, and supported it, but allowed some individual Russian athletes to compete after they had been cleared by their federations. For the Russians track & field athletes, this would be only one competitor, female long jumper [Darya Klishina], who had lived and trained in the United States for the past few years and had been subjected to multiple drug tests.

With this negative background the biggest positive story of Rio athletics was Jamaican wunder-sprinter [Usain Bolt], who was trying to win his third consecutive sprint triple with golds in the 100 metres, 200 metres, and 4x100 metre relay. It was a quest at which he would be successful in Rio, giving him nine Olympic gold medals, equaling the Olympic record for athletics held by [Paavo Nurmi] and [Carl Lewis] (trailing the 10 of [Ray Ewry] if one includes the 1906 Olympics).

Three world records were set in Rio, two by women and one in men’s competition. Ethiopian [Almaz Ayana] shattered the women’s world mark in the 10,000 metres, Poland’s [Anita Włodarczyk] broke her own world record in the hammer throw, and South African [Wayde van Niekerk] broke [Michael Johnson]’s 17-year old mark in the men’s 400 metres.

The United States would dominate the athletics competition in Rio, winning 32 medals, 16 by the men and 16 by the women. They also led the gold medal lists, winning 13 gold, 7 by men, and 6 by women. Such was their dominance that they also had the most silver medals and bronze medals for both genders, leading the medal tables in every possible category. Since the advent of women’s Olympic competition in 1928, this had only previously been accomplished at the 1932 Olympics.


Event Gold Silver Bronze
Men's 100 metres JAM Usain Bolt USA Justin Gatlin CAN Andre De Grasse
Men's 200 metres JAM Usain Bolt CAN Andre De Grasse FRA Christophe Lemaître
Men's 400 metres RSA Wayde van Niekerk GRN Kirani James USA LaShawn Merritt
Men's 800 metres KEN David Rudisha ALG Taoufik Makhloufi USA Clayton Murphy
Men's 1,500 metres USA Matt Centrowitz ALG Taoufik Makhloufi NZL Nick Willis
Men's 5,000 metres GBR Mo Farah USA Paul Chelimo ETH Hagos Gebrhiwet
Men's 10,000 metres GBR Mo Farah KEN Paul Tanui ETH Tamirat Tola
Men's Marathon KEN Eliud Kipchoge ETH Feyisa Lilesa USA Galen Rupp
Men's 110 metres Hurdles JAM Omar McLeod ESP Orlando Ortega FRA Dimitri Bascou
Men's 400 metres Hurdles USA Kerron Clement KEN Boniface Tumuti TUR Yasmani Copello
Men's 3,000 metres Steeplechase KEN Conseslus Kipruto USA Evan Jager FRA Mahiedine Mekhissi-Benabbad
Men's 4 × 100 metres Relay JAM Jamaica JPN Japan CAN Canada
Men's 4 × 400 metres Relay USA United States JAM Jamaica BAH Bahamas
Men's 20 kilometres Walk CHN Wang Zhen CHN Cai Zelin AUS Dane Bird-Smith
Men's 50 kilometres Walk SVK Matej Tóth AUS Jared Tallent JPN Hirooki Arai
Men's High Jump CAN Derek Drouin QAT Mutaz Essa Barshim UKR Bohdan Bondarenko
Men's Pole Vault BRA Thiago Braz FRA Renaud Lavillenie USA Sam Kendricks
Men's Long Jump USA Jeff Henderson RSA Luvo Manyonga GBR Greg Rutherford
Men's Triple Jump USA Christian Taylor USA Will Claye CHN Dong Bin
Men's Shot Put USA Ryan Crouser USA Joe Kovacs NZL Tom Walsh
Men's Discus Throw GER Christoph Harting POL Piotr Małachowski GER Daniel Jasinski
Men's Hammer Throw TJK Dilshod Nazarov BLR Ivan Tikhon POL Wojciech Nowicki
Men's Javelin Throw GER Thomas Röhler KEN Julius Yego TTO Keshorn Walcott
Men's Decathlon USA Ashton Eaton FRA Kévin Mayer CAN Damian Warner
Women's 100 metres JAM Elaine Thompson USA Tori Bowie JAM Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce
Women's 200 metres JAM Elaine Thompson NED Dafne Schippers USA Tori Bowie
Women's 400 metres BAH Shaunae Miller USA Allyson Felix JAM Shericka Jackson
Women's 800 metres RSA Caster Semenya BDI Francine Niyonsaba KEN Margaret Wambui
Women's 1,500 metres KEN Faith Kibiegon ETH Genzebe Dibaba USA Jenny Barringer-Simpson
Women's 5,000 metres KEN Vivian Cheruiyot KEN Hellen Obiri ETH Almaz Ayana
Women's 10,000 metres ETH Almaz Ayana KEN Vivian Cheruiyot ETH Tirunesh Dibaba
Women's Marathon KEN Jemima Sumgong BRN Eunice Kirwa ETH Mare Dibaba
Women's 100 metres Hurdles USA Brianna Rollins USA Nia Ali USA Kristi Castlin
Women's 400 metres Hurdles USA Dalilah Muhammad DEN Sara Slott Petersen USA Ashley Spencer
Women's 3,000 metres Steeplechase BRN Ruth Jebet KEN Hyvin Kiyeng USA Emma Coburn
Women's 4 × 100 metres Relay USA United States JAM Jamaica GBR Great Britain
Women's 4 × 400 metres Relay USA United States JAM Jamaica GBR Great Britain
Women's 20 kilometres Walk CHN Liu Hong MEX María Guadalupe González CHN Lu Xiuzhi
Women's High Jump ESP Ruth Beitía BUL Mirela Demireva CRO Blanka VlaÅ¡ić
Women's Pole Vault GRE Ekaterini Stefanidi USA Sandi Morris NZL Eliza McCartney
Women's Long Jump USA Tianna Madison-Bartoletta USA Brittney Reese SRB Ivana Å panović
Women's Triple Jump COL Caterine Ibargüén VEN Yulimar Rojas KAZ Olga Rypakova
Women's Shot Put USA Michelle Carter NZL Valerie Adams-Vili HUN Anita Márton
Women's Discus Throw CRO Sandra Perković FRA Mélina Robert-Michon CUB Denia Caballero
Women's Hammer Throw POL Anita Włodarczyk CHN Zhang Wenxiu GBR Sophie Hitchon
Women's Javelin Throw CRO Sara Kolak RSA Sunette Viljoen CZE Barbora Å potáková
Women's Heptathlon BEL Nafi Thiam GBR Jessica Ennis-Hill CAN Brianne Theisen-Eaton