Bahamas win 4x400m relay, beating Team USA to gold
USA's women smash 27-year-old world record in 4x100m final
France's Renaud Lavillenie takes gold in men's pole vault final with an Olympic record of 5.97m
The Bahamas claimed a track and field Olympic medal, storming to gold in the 4x400m relay ahead of Team USA on Friday.
Bahamas anchorman Ramon Miller ran an inspired final leg to overall America’s Angelo Taylor and come home in a national record of two minutes 56.72 seconds.
Trinidad and Tobago fended off a late surge from Great Britain to take the bronze.
But there was disappointment for the South African team – which included double-amputee Oscar Pistorius – as they could only finish in eighth place.
The U.S.’s women fared better in the sprint relay earlier in the evening taking the gold medal in the 4x100m for the first time since the 1996 Atlanta Games.
The quartet, anchored by 100m silver medallist Carmelita Jeter, crossed the line in a time of 41.37 seconds, smashing the world record set by East Germany in 1985.
“I knew that these girls were going to run their hearts out,” said Jeter.
“I knew we were running fast. I was already pointing at the clock, saying ‘there it is’. There was a cloud hanging over us, with people saying ‘they can’t do this, they’re going to drop the stick’ but we did it,” Jeter added.
Asli Cakir Alptekin won Turkey’s first ever gold medal in track and field taking gold in the women’s 1500m final.
The 26-year-old – who served a two-year doping ban from 2004-2006 – came home in a time of four minutes 10.23 seconds, fractionally ahead of her compatriot Gamze Bulut with Bahrain’s Ethiopian-born Maryam Jamal claiming the bronze.
In the women’s 5,000m final, Ethiopia’s Meseret Defar took the gold medal ahead of Kenya’s Vivian Jepkemoi Cheruiyot with Tirunesh Diaba, also from Ethiopia taking bronze.
France’s Renaud Lavillenie took gold in the men’s pole vault final, posting an Olympic record of 5.97m.
Germany’s Bjorn Otto claimed silver, while compatriot Raphael Holzdeppe took bronze.
There was also an Olympic record for Russia’s Tatyana Lysenko, whose throw of 78.18m saw her claim gold in the women’s hammer competition.
Poland’s Anita Wlodarczyk earned silver with a throw of 77.60m with Germany’s Betty Heidler taking bronze with a throw of 77.13m.
Jamaica and the U.S. are safely through the to final of men’s 4x100 relay where they will be joined by Canada, Netherlands, Japan, Trinidad and Tobago, France and Australia.