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Four Ferraris: Italy races to triumph 4×100 Olympic gold

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There are a few things that track fans are used to doing: Nobody stops the Jamaican women at these Olympics and Sevan Hassan is a tireless medal contender in every race she takes part in.

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Other things that may take a while to get used to: Italy is a sprint force. She now holds the gold medal in the men’s 4 x 100m relay to go on with the impressive 100m gold medal won by Marcel Jacobs.


Italy’s relay team made Jacobs a double Olympic champion on Friday, as the country racked up a stunning triumph to tie Jacobs’ singles triumph five nights earlier. Jacobs ran the second stage of the Italy Journey which lasted 37.5 seconds around the track, and Filippo Tortue edged Britain’s Nathaniel Mitchell Blake.

Torto, who was a bit behind on the change, slipped first to claim a 0.01sec triumph.

“We are four Ferraris,” said Tortue.

The triumph unleashed a second round of Italian sprint celebrations on the track at the Olympic Stadium – more than anyone expected at the opening of these games.

Canada, which includes 200-meter champion Andre de Grasse, took the bronze in 37.70 seconds. The Jamaican Olympic team without Usain Bolt came in fifth to end a streak of three straight wins in the relay for the island nation. (One was suspended over a doping case.)

Jamaica with Bolt used to be a default collateral for gold. At this Olympics, the Jamaican women’s team with the three fastest sprinters in the world was the surest thing to happen.

Tokyo doubles champion Elaine Thompson-Hera ran in the second leg following an embarrassing, but legal, exchange with Brianna Williams. She handed the wand to Shelley Ann Fraser-Price, the 100th silver medalist. Fraser-Pryce tied up with 100th bronze medalist Sherika Jackson, and Jackson brought the Jamaican women home in a national record of 41.02 seconds. It was the fewest surprising performance of the night – but still impressive.

It also gave a third gold medal in the Games to Thompson-Herah, who won the 100, 200 and 4×100 relay races in a Bolt-like fashion.

“We took the national record, Eileen took her third gold, and we’re all going home with a gold, so we’re very grateful for the effort,” Fraser-Price said.

The U.S. won the silver at 41.45 while the U.S. men were not on the court a day following a destitute exchange that was judged sixth place in the qualifying round.

Earlier, Hasan held her own medals in the middle and lengthy distances with a bronze in the 1500m to go with the gold medal at the start of the week in the 5000. Her mission is not over yet. She will be chasing the third medal in the 10000 final on Saturday night. This will be her sixth race in eight days.

The Ethiopian-born sprinter, competing for the Netherlands, won all her races in Tokyo prior Friday by running behind or near the back of the court and unleashing her speed on the final lap.

But she changed those tactics in the 1500 final by jumping straight ahead and pushing the pace firm. She couldn’t get her. Faith Kipigon of Kenya rested Hassan’s shoulder on the final lap and made her move into the final turn. Hassan was unable to respond.

Kipyegon went so far as to retain her Olympic title and set a unused Olympic record of 3 minutes 54.11 seconds. Britain’s Laura Muir overtook Hassan to triumph the silver medal.

“I think the body is very tired,” said Hassan, who is wearing the Dutch flag again following her race. She made it clear that her goal for the 10,000 prize was no longer gold, it was just a medal.

“I (just) need this,” she said, holding her brassiere. “Not gone.”

Likewise, Allison Felix needed any color medal to make history on the eighth day of track and field in Tokyo. The 35-year-old American took bronze in the 400 meters won by Shauna Miller Uibo of the Bahamas, who beat Marilyde Paulino of the Dominican Republic by 0.84 seconds.

Felix now stands alone as the most decorated athlete in Olympic track history, with 10 medals. Shion no. Less than 10 years following a firm pregnancy made her wonder if she would ever come back to this point.

When it was over, she lay on her back on the track, her hands covering her confront but with a smile peeking out from behind them.

“This is very distinct, and it is very exceptional,” she said. “And it took a lot to get here.”


Also on Friday:

– Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda made the decision to come to the Olympics very lucrative with his gold in the 5,000m to go with his silver in the 10,000. Cheptegei had said he was considering skipping Tokyo following injury and a streak of decline.

China’s Liu Xiying won the women’s javelin event with a throw of 66.34 metres.

– The 50-kilometre pedestrian climbed at 5.30 am in the northern city of Sapporo and David Tomala won the gold in what may be the event’s final appearance at the Games. The 50km walk was scrapped from the Paris 2024 schedule. Antonella Palmisano won the women’s 20km walk.


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