Michael Cherry, Michael Norman slammed for missing 400m medals: 'We used to OWN this'

Michael Cherry was fourth, clocking in 44.21 seconds and Michael Norman came in fifth

                            Michael Cherry, Michael Norman slammed for missing 400m medals: 'We used to OWN this'
Michael Norman and Michael Cherry at the 2020 US Olympic Track & Field Team Trials at Hayward Field (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

Sprinter Steven Gardiner of the Bahamas was the winner at the men’s 400 meters final in the Tokyo Olympics. While Gardiner clocked an impressive 43.85 seconds, Anthony Zambrano of Colombia came in second with 44.08 seconds. Kirani James of Grenada came in third with 44.19 seconds.

James had the fastest time in the semifinals — 43.88 seconds. Zambrano was second in the heat in 43.93 seconds. In the third semifinal, Gardiner clocked 44.14 seconds. It was James’ third straight Olympic medal in the event: He won the gold in 2012 and the silver in 2016. Grenada has three Olympic medals in the country’s history, and they all belong to James.


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Steven Gardiner of Team Bahamas competes in the Men's 400 metres semi finals on day ten of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Olympic Stadium on August 02, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

Unfortunately for American fans, both Team USA athletes disappointed coming in fourth and fifth at the event. Michael Cherry was fourth, clocking in 44.21 seconds, narrowly missing the third position. Michael Norman was a full 0.1 second behind, coming in fifth. Prior to the finals, Cherry, who is making his first Olympic appearance, said of the semifinals, “It was pretty hot, so I was drained from the warmup,” Cherry said. “I didn’t expect to run that fast in the first round. But overall, it was a well-executed race.” He added, “To get a medal, I think I will have to stick to what I’ve been doing all year.”

The fresh-faced 18-year-old Norman made it into the 200m finals at the United States track and field trials for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. He had beaten former world champion Justin Gatlin in the 200m semi-finals before finishing fifth in the final, missing out on a place at the Games in 2016. Norman has part of his heritage rooted in Japan — his mother, Nobue Saito, was born in Japan. 



Fan disappointment

“The US used to OWN the men's 400. From 1984-2008, Americans won all 7 gold medals on offer, including sweeps in '88, '04 + '08,” wrote a Twitter user. “Since then, they have failed to medal in two of the last three Olympics.” Another tweet read: “USA's Black Thursday continues. No medals in men's 400 meters. It is entirely possible that for the first time in Olympic history, USA men will have zero individual gold medals on the track.”

“No gold for USA men in the 100, 110h, 200, 400, or 4x100. Getting shut out in the sprints,” one Twitter user wrote. Another said, “No medal for USA men in the 400…never thought I’d see that but good run fellas you did your best.”