| Event type

4 x 100 metres Relay, Men

Date10 – 11 August 2012
LocationOlympic Stadium, Olympic Park, Stratford, London
Participants67 from 16 countries
Olympic Record 37.10 WR / Jamaica JAM / 22 August 2008

Jamaica was heavily favored to win gold in this race. They were led by Usain Bolt, who had won the 100-200 double in both 2008 and already in London. Yohan Blake had been second to both races in London and was the 2011 World Champion in the 100. They were without former 100 world record holder Asafa Powell, injured in the 100 final, but would lead off with Nesta Carter and Michael Frater, and seemed impregnable. The Americans had Tyson Gay, the 2007 100/200 World Champion, and Justin Gatlin, 2004 Olympic 100 gold medalist and third in the short sprint in London, but they just didn’t seem to have the firepower to challenge the Jamaicans. In addition, US sprint relay teams had shown a frequent propensity to either drop the baton or run out of the zone and had not finished at several recent major internationals. Nobody else was given a chance at gold and the bronze was wide-open.

Carter put the Jamaicans ahead on the opener, with American Trell Kimmons trailing slightly. The race was very close, however, for the next two legs, as Gatlin/Frater matched second legs in 8.9, and Gay/Blake both ran 9.0 around the final curve. But this gave the lead to Usain Bolt on the anchor leg, to be challenged by American newcomer Ryan Bailey, who had been fifth in the open 100 metres. Bailey acquitted himself well, but he could not catch Bolt. The USA finished in 37.04, matching the existing world record, but Bolt brought Jamaica home in 36.84, the first time ever under 37 seconds for the gold and a new world record. Canada came home in third, it seemed, but was disqualified for a lane violation and the bronze went to Trinidad & Tobago.

Jamaica thus defended its gold medal in the event, and Bolt had doubled up with three gold medals in the 100, 200, and sprint relay in both 2008 and 2012, the first runner ever to do so. For the Americans it seemed to be some measure of redemption as they did successfully finish the race with good baton exchanges, but were simply beaten by a faster team. However, in 2014 Tyson Gay tested positive for doping, and his penalty was applied retroactively, which caused the US relay team in this event to be disqualified, although that was not announced by the IOC until May 2015.

1JamaicaJAM37.39 (1 h1)36.84 (1)Gold
2171Nesta Carter
2174Michael Frater
2169Yohan Blake
2170Usain Bolt
2168Kemar Bailey-Cole
2Trinidad and TobagoTTO38.10 (2 h2)38.12 (2)Silver
3038Keston Bledman
3039Marc Burns
3040Emmanuel Callender
3051Richard Thompson
3FranceFRA38.15 (3 h2)38.16 (3)Bronze
1769Jimmy Vicaut
1759Christophe Lemaître
1765Pierre-Alexis Pessonneaux
1766Ronald Pognon
4JapanJPN38.07 (1 h2)38.35 (4)
2241Ryota Yamagata
2220Masashi Eriguchi
2236Shinji Takahira
2223Shota Iizuka
5NetherlandsNED38.29 (3 h1)38.39 (5)
2546Brian Mariano
2547Churandy Martina
2543Giovanni Codrington
2551Patrick van Luijk
6AustraliaAUS38.17 (4 h2)38.43 (6)
1036Anthony Alozie
1054Isaac Ntiamoah
1050Andrew McCabe
1057Joshua Ross
AC r2/2CanadaCAN38.05 (2 h1)– (AC)
1298Gavin Smellie
1299Seyi Smith
1284Jared Connaughton
1303Justyn Warner
4 h1 r1/2BrazilBRA38.35 (4 h1)
1220Aldemir Gomes
1232Sandro Viana
1215Nilson André
1224Bruno Lins
5 h1 r1/2People's Republic of ChinaCHN38.38 (5 h1)
1349Guo Fan
1355Liang Jiahong
1360Su Bingtian
1368Zhang Peimeng
5 h2 r1/2PolandPOL38.31 (5 h2)
2662Kamil Masztak
2657Dariusz Kuć
2656Robert Kubaczyk
2654Kamil Kryński
6 h1 r1/2Saint Kitts and NevisSKN38.41 (6 h1)
2924Lestrod Roland
2923Jason Rogers
2919Antoine Adams
2922BJ Lawrence
6 h2 r1/2GermanyGER38.37 (6 h2)
1920Julian Reus
1927Tobias Unger
1911Alexander Kosenkow
1905Lucas Jakubczyk
7 h1 r1/2ItalyITA38.58 (7 h1)
2130Simone Collio
2141Jacques Riparelli
2136Davide Manenti
2129Fabio Cerutti
7 h2 r1/2Hong Kong, ChinaHKG38.61 (7 h2)
2034Tang Yik Chun
2032Lai Chun Ho
2033Ng Ka Fung
2035Tsui Chi Ho
ACGreat BritainGBR– (AC h1)DQ
1820Christian Malcolm
1803Dwain Chambers
1836Danny Talbot
1809Adam Gemili
ACUnited StatesUSA37.38 (AC h2)37.04 (AC)DQ1
3226Trell Kimmons
3216Justin Gatlin
3217Tyson Gay
3205Ryan Bailey
3213Jeff Demps
3244Darvis Patton

Round One (10 August 2012 — 19:45)

Top three in each heat and next two fastest advanced to the final.

Heat One (19:45)

PosLaneTeamNOCTimeReaction Time
Nesta CarterMichael FraterYohan BlakeKemar Bailey-Cole
Gavin SmellieSeyi SmithJared ConnaughtonJustyn Warner
Brian MarianoChurandy MartinaGiovanni CodringtonPatrick van Luijk
Aldemir GomesSandro VianaNilson AndréBruno Lins
55People's Republic of ChinaCHN38.380.176
Guo FanLiang JiahongSu BingtianZhang Peimeng
64Saint Kitts and NevisSKN38.410.167
Lestrod RolandJason RogersAntoine AdamsBJ Lawrence
Simone CollioJacques RiparelliDavide ManentiFabio Cerutti
AC2Great BritainGBR0.145DQ2
Christian MalcolmDwain ChambersDanny TalbotAdam Gemili

Heat Two (19:53)

PosLaneTeamNOCTimeReaction Time
Ryota YamagataMasashi EriguchiShinji TakahiraShota Iizuka
24Trinidad and TobagoTTO38.100.138Q
Richard ThompsonMarc BurnsEmmanuel CallenderKeston Bledman
Jimmy VicautChristophe LemaîtrePierre-Alexis PessonneauxRonald Pognon
Anthony AlozieIsaac NtiamoahAndrew McCabeJoshua Ross
Kamil MasztakDariusz KućRobert KubaczykKamil Kryński
Julian ReusTobias UngerAlexander KosenkowLucas Jakubczyk
78Hong Kong, ChinaHKG38.610.184
Tang Yik ChunLai Chun HoNg Ka FungTsui Chi Ho
AC7United StatesUSA37.380.250DQ3
Jeff DempsDarvis PattonTrell KimmonsJustin Gatlin

Final (11 August 2012 — 21:00)

PosLaneTeamNOCTimeReaction Time
Nesta CarterMichael FraterYohan BlakeUsain Bolt
29Trinidad and TobagoTTO38.120.176
Keston BledmanMarc BurnsEmmanuel CallenderRichard Thompson
Jimmy VicautChristophe LemaîtrePierre-Alexis PessonneauxRonald Pognon
Ryota YamagataMasashi EriguchiShinji TakahiraShota Iizuka
Brian MarianoChurandy MartinaGiovanni CodringtonPatrick van Luijk
Anthony AlozieIsaac NtiamoahAndrew McCabeJoshua Ross
Gavin SmellieSeyi SmithJared ConnaughtonJustyn Warner
AC7United StatesUSA37.040.154DQ5
Trell KimmonsJustin GatlinTyson GayRyan Bailey