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400 meter sprint for Men at Olympics


400 meter Sprint for Men at Olympics: The 400 meter sprint is the longest sprint event. The length of the race is same as the length of an outdoor track. The length of the inside lane of an outdoor track is exactly 400 meter.

The runners are spread out at the starting point to ensure that they all run equal distance of 400 meter. The athletes running the 400 meter sprint event need to be very flexible and have excellent pace and speed. As this is a long high sped event, during the 400 meter race, the athletes often face with problems like muscle pull or numbness of muscles. The athletics follow different tactics to perform better in the event. Generally, after leaving the starting block, the athletes run very hard up to the first curve. Then, the runners slow up a bit and after crossing the second curve of the track, they sprint for the finishing line in the last 100 meter.

400 meter Sprint for Men in Summer Olympics: The 400 meter sprint event, which is the longest sprint event in the history of track and field athletics, has always been held in the Summer Games. The 400 meter sprint event was introduced to the Olympics in the very first modern Summer Games, held in 1896 at Athens. Since then, the event has been held in every Olympics. The athletes of the United States of America have been the dominating figure in the 400 meter event, since its advent.

Rules for 400 meter Sprint for Men at Olympics: The International Association of Athletics Federations or IAAF has set some rules for the track and field athletic events. The fundamental rules for the 400 meter sprint event in the international competitions are as follows -

  • When the number of competitors is such that a single race cannot be held, the preliminary heats are arranged. Every participant has to compete in the heats. Those qualifying in the heats can only move forward to the next round.
  • A sprinter will be warned after the first false start he takes. If there is one more false start, the athlete has to leave the competition.
  • The IAAF has fixed the length of the track. The width of each lane is also specified by the organization.
  • Running inside the inner curve of the track, or stepping on the inner line of the track is not permitted by the IAAF.
  • An athlete once outside the track boundary cannot join the race again.
  • The running records made on the track made of the substance enduring the running spikes are only accepted.
  • The athlete, who fails to make it to the finishing line, is not given any credit, even if he runs with a greater speed than the winner.
  • The time of the event is measured using a standard automatic timing device.
  • The IAAF has fixed the radius of the outside lane of the track at a maximum of 50 meter.

Medal Winners in the 400 meter Sprint for Men at Olympics:



NameCountryGoldSilverBronze
Michael JOHNSONUSA200
Jeremy WARINERUSA110
Steve LEWISUSA110
Kirani JAMESGRN100
Lashawn MERRITTUSA100
Quincy WATTSUSA100

The American athletes have excelled in the 400 meter sprint event through out the history of the track event. Some sprinters who have won international titles in the event are Roger Black, Lee Evans, Michael Johnson, Alberto Juantorena, Archie Williams, Eric Liddell, Jeremy Wariner, Butch Reynolds, Quincy Watts, Danny Everett, Steve Lewis, Larry James, Alvin Harrison, Wyndham Halswelle, Jerome Young, Alonzo Babers, Viktor Markin, Vincent Matthews, Michael Larrabee and Otis Davis.

Trivia: In the 1908 London Summer Games, the final of the 400 meter sprint event had to be re-run. The British athlete Wyndham Halswelle was obstructed by John Carpenter, the American runner. The other two American participants refused to compete in the re-run. As a consequence, the final was a walkover for Wyndham Halswelle and he won gold medal in the event.

In the 2000 Sydney Summer Games, Michael Johnson successfully defended his Olympic title in the 400 meter sprint event.

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