Steven Gardiner wins gold in men's 400m, 'dominates' with clear lead

Steven Gardiner, 25, recorded a season-best time of 43.85 seconds to finish ahead of Colombia's Anthony Jose Zambrano, who won silver, and London 2012 winner Kirani James, who took home the bronze medal


                            Steven Gardiner wins gold in men's 400m, 'dominates' with clear lead
Steven Gardiner of Team Bahamas celebrates after winning the gold medal in the Men's 400m Final on day thirteen of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Olympic Stadium on August 05, 2021, in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)

Steven Gardiner of the Bahamas stunned audiences as he added the men's 400m Olympic gold to his 2019 World Championship success in a comfortable victory at the Olympic Stadium on Thursday, August 5.

The 25-year-old sensation recorded a season-best time of 43.85 seconds at the Tokyo 2020 Games to finish ahead of Colombia's Anthony Jose Zambrano, who won silver, and London 2012 winner Kirani James, who took home the bronze medal. Gardiner, with his signature upright running style, raced with a clear lead on the final straight and even appeared to ease up near the finish line to become the Olympic champion.

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Steven Gardiner of Team Bahamas competes in the Men's 400 meters 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)

 

Social media observers were rather awestruck by Gardiner's superior performance and showered praises on him. "Steven Gardiner just absolutely dominated that 400," ESPN writer D'Arcy Maine tweeted.

"The Bahamas’ Steven Gardiner makes the Olympic 400 final look like a dual meet, easing away from the field in the last 50 meters to win the gold in 43.85," Citius magazine commented.

"Steven Gardiner just bagged the GOLD in the men’s 400m at the Tokyo Olympics. He finished with a time of 43.85. The world champion becomes the Olympic champion once again!!! What an amazing accomplishment! Congratulations, STEVEN!" one Twitter user wrote.

"Congratulations to @_SpeedyStevie! Steven Gardiner becomes the FIRST Bahamian male in history to win any medal in the 400m at the Olympic Games. He is also currently the reigning world champion in the event!" another added.

"What we naming after Steven cause he is amazing!!!????" a comment read.

"It's time people start putting some respect on Steven Gardiner's name... even after he won the world title.. he was never in the conversation... hope now you all won't forget him #Olympics," one wrote.

"Happy Steven Gardiner won 400m purely because he did a cute little wave when everyone else was trying to look cool in their intros, an icon," another fan chimed in.



 

 



 

 



 

 



 

 



 

 



 

 



 

Gardiner was born on September 12, 1995, in Murphy Town, Central Abaco in the Bahamas. He was a competitive volleyball player during his teenage years, but also ran track and field. The sprinting prodigy wanted to transition to shorter sprints, but his high school coach told him he was too tall for it. This prompted him to become a 400m runner and the best in the world at that.

Steven Gardiner of Team Bahamas leads the field as he goes on to win the gold medal in the Men's 400m Final on day thirteen of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Olympic Stadium on August 05, 2021, in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)

After graduating, the sprinter rapidly improved to become the youngest Bahamian ever to run the distance under 45 seconds at 19 years old. He subsequently moved up to fourth on the Bahamian all-time lists with a best of 44.64 seconds at the Bislett Games, where he won his debut on the IAAF Diamond League circuit, finishing ahead of Matthew Hudson-Smith and Pavel Maslák.

Gardiner is the current Olympic and world champion in the 400m and won the silver medal at the 2017 World Championships in that event. He holds the Bahaman national record of 43.48 seconds from the 2019 World Championships, making him the sixth-fastest man in the history of the race. Having said that, Gardiner also owns the Bahamian records in the 300m and 200m, with times of 31.83 seconds and 19.75 seconds respectively.
 

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