| Event type

400 metres Hurdles, Men

Date20 – 22 July 1908
LocationWhite City Stadium, London
Participants15 from 6 countries

In 1908 this event was rarely held a major national meets, though it had been contested at the Olympics of 1900 and 1904. Unlike the 400 metre flat race, this event was run in lanes. As in the 110 metre hurdles, an excessive number of heats was scheduled. Seven of the heats had just one starter, one heat was declared void as there were no starters at all, and the remaining four heats had just two starters. Hence, after 12 heats, only four runners had been eliminated.

In the first round, Charles Bacon (USA) set a new Olympic record of 57.0 and Harry Hillman (USA) improved the record to 56.4 in the second round. Hillman had been Olympic champion in this event in 1904. Bacon recaptured the Olympic record and set a new world of 55.0 in winning the final. There was a delay in announcing the result as Bacon had taken a wrong hurdle during the race. He regained the proper course at the next hurdle and the judges, after due consideration, decided that he had covered the correct distance. In third place in the final was Jimmy Tremeer (GBR) who had won the British 100 yard title in 1897.

1Charles BaconUSA57.00 (1 h3)58.80 (1 h2)55.00 (1)GoldWR
2Harry HillmanUSA59.20 (1 h6)56.40 (1 h1)55.3est / at 2 yards (2)Silver
3Jimmy TremeerGBR1:01.8 (1 h10)1:00.6 (1 h4)57.0est / at 15 yards (3)Bronze
ACLeslie BurtonGBR1:00.6 (1 h12)59.80 (1 h3)– (AC)
2 h1 r2/3Harry CoeUSA58.80 (1 h2)57.0est (2 h1)
2 h3 r2/3Frederick HarmerGBR1:00.4 (1 h4)1:00.3 at 6 yds (2 h3)
3 h3 r2/3Wyatt GouldGBR1:20.0 (1 h8)– (3 h3)
AC h1 r2/3Evert KoopsNED1:00.4 (1 h1)– (DNF h1)
AC h2 r2/3Oswald GroeningsGBR1:31.0 (1 h7)– (DNF h2)
AC h2 r2/3Nándor KovácsHUN1:03.6 (1 h9)– (DNF h2)
AC h4 r2/3Geoffrey BurtonGBR1:00.4 (1 h5)– (DNF h4)
2 h2 r1/3Jack DenshamGBR59.2est / at 1½ yards (2 h2)
2 h3 r1/3Henry MurrayANZ59.8est / at 20 yards (2 h3)
2 h12 r1/3Henri MeslotFRA1:01.0est / at 2 yards (2 h12)
AC h6 r1/3Georges DuboisFRA– (DNF h6)

Round One (20 July 1908 — 16:45)

Winner in each heat advanced to the semi-finals.

Heat One

1Evert KoopsNED1:00.4Qwalkover

Heat Two

1Harry CoeUSA58.80Q
2Jack DenshamGBR59.2est / at 1½ yards

Heat Three

1Charles BaconUSA57.00QOR
2Henry MurrayANZ59.8est / at 20 yards1

Heat Four

1Frederick HarmerGBR1:00.4Qwalkover

Heat Five

1Geoffrey BurtonGBR1:00.4Qwalkover

Heat Six

1Harry HillmanUSA59.20Q
DNFGeorges DuboisFRA

Heat Seven

1Oswald GroeningsGBR1:31.0Qwalkover

Heat Eight

1Wyatt GouldGBR1:20.0Qwalkover

Heat Nine

1Nándor KovácsHUN1:03.6Qwalkover

Heat Ten

1Jimmy TremeerGBR1:01.8Qwalkover

Heat Eleven

Heat Twelve

1Leslie BurtonGBR1:00.6Q
2Henri MeslotFRA1:01.0est / at 2 yards

Semi-Finals (21 July 1908 — 16:00)

Winner in each heat advanced to the final.

Heat One

1Harry HillmanUSA56.40QOR
2Harry CoeUSA57.0est
DNFEvert KoopsNED

Heat Two

1Charles BaconUSA58.80Q
DNFOswald GroeningsGBR
DNFNándor KovácsHUN

Heat Three

1Leslie BurtonGBR59.80Q
2Frederick HarmerGBR1:00.3 at 6 yds
3Wyatt GouldGBR

Heat Four

1Jimmy TremeerGBR1:00.6Q
DNFGeoffrey BurtonGBR

Final (22 July 1908 — 15:30)

1Charles BaconUSA55.00WR
2Harry HillmanUSA55.3est / at 2 yards
3Jimmy TremeerGBR57.0est / at 15 yards
ACLeslie BurtonGBR