U.S. men’s track team wins gold in 1,600-meter relay

USA's Bryce Deadmon sprints to the lead in the 4 X 400 relay.
USA’s Bryce Deadmon sprints to the lead to help capture the gold medal in the final of the men’s 4 x 400-meter relay.
(Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times)

The United States men’s track team waited for the final event at Olympic Stadium to win its first gold medal in a running event.

Michael Cherry, Michael Norman, Bryce Deadmon and Rai Benjamin finished the 1,600-meter relay in 2 minutes 55.70 seconds on Saturday night to help the U.S. men avoid a gold-medal shutout.

The U.S. men’s team entered Saturday with only one gold medal: Ryan Crouser’s second consecutive gold medal in the shot put.


But they had not won a single gold medal in a running event. So the pressure was on the American men to win an event they have dominated.

News, results and features from The Times’ team of 12 reporters who covered the Tokyo Olympic Games in the summer of 2021.

Aug. 8, 2021

Cherry led off and appeared behind other runners as he made the pass to Norman. Norman, who had faded in the 400-meter final, made up ground and gave Deadmon the lead. Deadmon extended the margin and Benjamin powered to the victory.

Benjamin’s blaze to the finish for the gold medal was an apt reward after he ran a time faster than the world record in the 400-meter hurdles — only to finish behind Karsten Warholm of Norway, who established a new world record.