Female athletes in a 100 metres heat at the 2007 World Championships.
|World||Usain Bolt 9.58 (2009)|
|Olympic||Usain Bolt 9.63 (2012)|
|World||Florence Griffith 10.49 (1988)|
|Olympic||Florence Griffith 10.62 (1988)|
The 100 metres, or 100-metre dash, is a sprint race in track and field competitions. The shortest common outdoor running distance, it is one of the most popular and prestigious events in the sport of athletics. It has been contested at the Summer Olympics since 1896 for men and 1928 for women.
The reigning 100 m Olympic champion is often named "the fastest man/woman in the world". Jamaicans Usain Bolt and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce are the reigning world and Olympic champions in the men's and women's 100 metres, respectively.
On an outdoor 400 metres running track, the 100 m is run on the home straight, with the start usually being set on an extension to make it a straight-line race. Runners begin in the starting blocks and the race begins when an official fires the starter's pistol. Sprinters typically reach top speed after somewhere between 50–60 m. Their speed then slows towards the finish line.
The 10-second barrier has historically been a barometer of fast men's performances, while the best female sprinters take eleven seconds or less to complete the race. The current men's world record is 9.58 seconds, set by Jamaica's Usain Bolt, while the women's world record of 10.49 seconds set by American Florence Griffith-Joyner in 1988 remains unbroken.
The 100 m (109.361 yards) emerged from the metrication of the 100 yards (91.4 m), a now defunct distance originally contested in English-speaking countries. The event is largely held outdoors as few indoor facilities have a 100 m straight.
- 1 Race dynamics
- 2 10-second barrier
- 3 Record performances
- 4 Fastest 100 metres runners
- 5 Olympic medalists
- 6 World Championship medalists
- 7 See also
- 8 References
- 9 External links
The time between the gun and first kick against the starting block is measured electronically, via sensors built in the gun and the blocks. A reaction time less than 0.1 s is considered a false start. The 0.1-second interval accounts for the sum of the time it takes for the sound of the starter's pistol to reach the runners' ears, and the time it takes to react to it.
For many years a sprinter was disqualified if responsible for two false starts individually. However, this rule allowed some major races to be restarted so many times that the sprinters started to lose focus. The next iteration of the rule, introduced in February 2003, meant that one false start was allowed among the field, but anyone responsible for a subsequent false start was disqualified.
This rule led to some sprinters deliberately false-starting to gain a psychological advantage: an individual with a slower reaction time might false-start, forcing the faster starters to wait and be sure of hearing the gun for the subsequent start, thereby losing some of their advantage. To avoid such abuse and to improve spectator enjoyment, the IAAF implemented a further change in the 2010 season – a false starting athlete now receives immediate disqualification. This proposal was met with objections when first raised in 2005, on the grounds that it would not leave any room for innocent mistakes. Justin Gatlin commented, "Just a flinch or a leg cramp could cost you a year's worth of work." The rule had a dramatic impact at the 2011 world championships, when current world record holder Usain Bolt was disqualified.
Runners typically reach their top speed just past the halfway point of the race and they progressively decelerate in the later stages of the race. Maintaining that top speed for as long as possible is a primary focus of training for the 100 m. Pacing and running tactics do not play a significant role in the 100 m, as success in the event depends more on pure athletic qualities and technique.
The winner, by IAAF Competition Rules, is determined by the first athlete with his or her torso (not including limbs, head, or neck) over the nearer edge of the finish line. When the placing of the athletes is not obvious, a photo finish is used to distinguish which runner was first to cross the line.
Climatic conditions, in particular air resistance, can affect performances in the 100 m. A strong head wind is very detrimental to performance, while a tail wind can improve performances significantly. For this reason, a maximum tail wind of 2.0 m/s is allowed for a 100 m performance to be considered eligible for records, or "wind legal".
Furthermore, sprint athletes perform better at high altitudes because of the thinner air, which provides less air resistance. In theory, the thinner air would also make breathing slightly more difficult (due to the partial pressure of oxygen being lower), but this difference is negligible for sprint distances where all the oxygen needed for the short dash is already in the muscles and bloodstream when the race starts (explaining why many athletes choose not to breath the duration of the race). While there are no limitations on altitude, performances made at altitudes greater than 1000 m above sea level are marked with an "A".
Gender and ethnicity
Only male sprinters have beaten the 100 meter, 10-second barrier nearly all of them being of West African descent. Namibian (formerly South-West Africa) Frankie Fredericks became the first man of non-West African heritage to achieve the feat in 1991 and in 2003 Australia's Patrick Johnson (who has Irish and Indigenous Australian heritage) became the first sub-10-second runner without an African background.
In 2010, Frenchman Christophe Lemaitre became the first white European under ten seconds (although Poland's Marian Woronin had unofficially surpassed the barrier with a time of 9.992 seconds in 1984). In 2011, Zimbabwean Ngonidzashe Makusha became the 76th man to break the barrier, yet only the fourth man not of West African descent. No sprinter from Asia or East and North Africa has officially achieved this feat, though Koji Ito of Japan and Zhang Peimeng of China have both recorded times of exactly ten seconds.
It is believed that biological factors may be largely responsible for the disproportionate success in sprinting events enjoyed by athletes of West African descent. Chief among these is a preponderance of natural fast twitch muscle fibers, which aid in quicker reaction times. Scientists have concluded that elite-level sprinting is virtually impossible in the absence of the ACTN3 protein, a "speed gene" most common among persons of West African descent that renders fast twich muscle fibers fast. African American 200 meter and 400 meter world champion Michael Johnson has suggested that the presence of ACTN3 is at the root of the success of these athletes in sprinting events. Top sprinters of differing ancestry, such as Christophe Lemaitre, are believed to be exceptions in that they too likely have the genes favourable for sprinting.
Colin Jackson, an athlete with mixed ethnic background and former world record holder in the 110 metre hurdles, noted that both his parents were talented athletes and suggested that biological inheritance was the greatest influence, rather than any perceived racial factor. Furthermore, successful black role models in track events may reinforce the racial disparity.
Major 100 m races, such as at the Olympic Games, attract much attention, particularly when the world record is thought to be within reach.
The men's world record has been improved upon twelve times since electronic timing became mandatory in 1977. The current men's world record of 9.58 s is held by Usain Bolt of Jamaica, set at the 2009 World Athletics Championships final on 16 August 2009, breaking his own previous world record by 0.11 s. The current women's world record of 10.49 s was set by Florence Griffith-Joyner of the USA, in Indianapolis, Indiana, on 16 July 1988.
Jim Hines, Ronnie Ray Smith and Charles Green were the first to break the 10-second barrier in the 100 m, all on 20 June 1968, the Night of Speed. Hines also recorded the first legal electronically timed sub-10 second 100 m in winning the 100 metres at the 1968 Olympics. Bob Hayes ran a wind-assisted 9.91 seconds at the 1964 Olympics.
Updated 13 May 2013.
|Time (s)||Wind||Athlete||Nation||Time (s)||Wind||Athlete||Nation|
|Africa (records)||9.85||+1.7||Olusoji Fasuba||Nigeria||10.79||+1.1||Blessing Okagbare||Nigeria|
|Asia (records)||9.99||+0.9||Samuel Francis||Qatar||10.79||0.0||Li Xuemei||People's Republic of China|
|Europe (records)||9.86||+0.6||Francis Obikwelu||Portugal||10.73||+2.0||Christine Arron||France|
|North, Central America
and Caribbean (records)
|9.58 WR||+0.9||Usain Bolt||Jamaica||10.49 WR||0.0||Florence Griffith-Joyner||United States|
|Oceania (records)||9.93||+1.8||Patrick Johnson||Australia||11.12[A]||+1.9||Melinda Gainsford-Taylor||Australia|
|South America (records)||10.00[A]||+1.6||Robson da Silva||Brazil||11.05||+1.7||Ana Cláudia Lemos||Brazil|
Fastest 100 metres runners
All time top 25 men
As of January 2013
|1||9.58 WR||+0.9||Usain Bolt||Jamaica||16 August 2009||Berlin|
|2||9.69||+2.0||Tyson Gay||United States||20 September 2009||Shanghai|
|−0.1||Yohan Blake||Jamaica||23 August 2012||Lausanne|
|4||9.72||+0.2||Asafa Powell||Jamaica||2 September 2008||Lausanne|
|5||9.78||+0.9||Nesta Carter||Jamaica||29 August 2010||Rieti|
|6||9.79||+0.1||Maurice Greene||United States||16 June 1999||Athens|
|+1.5||Justin Gatlin||United States||5 August 2012||London|
|8||9.80||+1.3||Steve Mullings||Jamaica||4 June 2011||Eugene|
|9||9.84||+0.7||Donovan Bailey||Canada||27 July 1996||Atlanta|
|+0.2||Bruny Surin||Canada||22 August 1999||Seville|
|11||9.85||+1.2||Leroy Burrell||United States||6 July 1994||Lausanne|
|+1.7||Olusoji Fasuba||Nigeria||12 May 2006||Ad-Dawhah|
|+1.3||Mike Rodgers||United States||4 June 2011||Eugene|
|+1.0||Richard Thompson||Trinidad and Tobago||13 August 2011||Port of Spain|
|15||9.86||+1.2||Carl Lewis||United States||25 August 1991||Tokyo|
|−0.7||Frankie Fredericks||Namibia||3 July 1996||Lausanne|
|+1.8||Ato Boldon||Trinidad and Tobago||19 April 1998||Walnut|
|+0.6||Francis Obikwelu||Portugal||22 August 2004||Athens|
|+1.4||Keston Bledman||Trinidad and Tobago||23 June 2012||Port of Spain|
|20||9.87||+0.3||Linford Christie||United Kingdom||15 August 1993||Stuttgart|
|−0.2||Obadele Thompson [A]||Barbados||11 September 1998||Johannesburg|
|22||9.88||+1.8||Shawn Crawford||United States||19 June 2004||Eugene|
|+1.0||Walter Dix||United States||8 August 2010||Nottwil|
|+0.9||Ryan Bailey||United States||29 August 2010||Rieti|
|+1.0||Michael Frater||Jamaica||30 June 2011||Lausanne|
- Usain Bolt also holds the record for the fastest 100 metres with a running start at 8.70 (41 km/hr). This was achieved at a 150 metres race in Manchester 2009, completed in 14.35 (also a World Record). The second fastest all time is Asafa Powell with a run of 8.75 on the 4 x 100 metres anchor leg at the Beijing Olympics.
- Tyson Gay also has a time of 9.68 s set on 29 June 2008 during the 2008 U.S. Olympic Track & Field Trials at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon; the tail wind speed was +4.1 m/s, more than double the IAAF legal limit of +2.0 m/s.
- Obadele Thompson ran a wind-aided 9.69 in El Paso, Texas in April 1996 which stood as the fastest ever 100m time for 12 years until Tyson Gay's June 2008 performance; the tail wind speed was +5.7 m/s.
- Justin Gatlin ran 9.77 in Doha on 12 May 2006, which was at the time ratified as a world record. However, the performance was rescinded in 2007 after he failed a doping test in April 2006.
- Carl Lewis ran a time of 9.78 seconds at the 1988 US Olympic trials in Indianapolis, but it was wind aided (the tail wind speed was +5.2 m/s).
- Tim Montgomery's time of 9.78 at Paris on 14 September 2002 was rescinded following his indictment in the BALCO scandal on drug use and drug trafficking charges. The time had stood as the world record until Asafa Powell first ran 9.77.
- Ben Johnson ran 9.79 at Seoul on 24 September 1988, but he was disqualified after he tested positive for stanozolol after the race. He subsequently admitted to drug use between 1981 and 1988, and his time of 9.83 at Rome on 30 August 1987 was rescinded. Carl Lewis's 9.92 in the Seoul race was therefore recognized as the world record, and his two prior runs of 9.93 were seen as having equalled the previous world record.
- Ato Boldon ran a total of four 9.86 clockings, (two in 1998, two in 1999).
- Steve Mullings serving a lifetime ban for doping.
All time top 25 women
As of July 2013
|1||10.49||0.0||Florence Griffith-Joyner||United States||16 July 1988||Indianapolis|
|2||10.64||+1.2||Carmelita Jeter||United States||20 September 2009||Shanghai|
|3||10.65 [A]||+1.1||Marion Jones||United States||12 September 1998||Johannesburg|
|4||10.70||+0.6||Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce||Jamaica||29 June 2012||Kingston|
|5||10.73||+2.0||Christine Arron||France||19 August 1998||Budapest|
|6||10.74||+1.3||Merlene Ottey||Jamaica||7 September 1996||Milan|
|7||10.75||+0.4||Kerron Stewart||Jamaica||10 July 2009||Rome|
|8||10.76||+1.7||Evelyn Ashford||United States||22 August 1984||Zürich|
|+1.1||Veronica Campbell-Brown||Jamaica||31 May 2011||Ostrava|
|10||10.77||+0.9||Irina Privalova||Russia||6 July 1994||Lausanne|
|+0.7||Ivet Lalova||Bulgaria||19 June 2004||Plovdiv|
|12||10.78 [A]||+1.0||Dawn Sowell||United States||3 June 1989||Provo|
|10.78||+1.8||Torri Edwards||United States||26 June 2008||Eugene|
|14||10.79||0.0||Li Xuemei||People's Republic of China||18 October 1997||Shanghai|
|−0.1||Inger Miller||United States||22 August 1999||Seville|
|+1.1||Blessing Okagbare||Nigeria||27 July 2013||London|
|17||10.81||+1.7||Marlies Gohr||East Germany||8 June 1983||Berlin|
|18||10.82||−1.0||Gail Devers||United States||1 August 1992||Barcelona|
|+0.4||Gwen Torrence||United States||3 September 1994||Paris|
|−0.3||Zhanna Block||Ukraine||6 August 2001||Edmonton|
|−0.7||Sherone Simpson||Jamaica||24 June 2006||Kingston|
|22||10.83||+1.7||Marita Koch||East Germany||8 June 1983||Berlin|
|0.0||Sheila Echols||United States||16 July 1988||Indianapolis|
|−0.7||Juliet Cuthbert||Jamaica||1 August 1992||Barcelona|
|+0.1||Ekaterina Thanou||Greece||22 August 1999||Seville|
|+1.6||Kelly-Ann Baptiste||Trinidad and Tobago||22 June 2013||Port of Spain|
- Florence Griffith-Joyner's World Record has been the subject of a controversy due to strong suspicion of a defective anemometer measuring a tailwind lower than actually present; since 1997 the International Athletics Annual of the Association of Track and Field Statisticians has listed this performance as "probably strongly wind assisted, but recognized as a world record". It can be reasonable to assume a wind reading of about +4.7 m/s for Griffith-Joyner's quarter-final. Her 10.61 the following day and 10.62 at the 1988 Olympics would still make her the world record holder. Sheila Echols' 10.83 clocking was set in the same quarter-final race at the US Olympic trials as Griffith-Joyner's world record, her next best time is 10.99, from the semi-finals of the same meet.
- Gail Devers also has two other 10.82 performances, 7 July 1993 in Lausanne (+1.5) and 16 August 1993 in the World Championship final in Stuttgart (−0.3).
Junior (under-20) men
|Rank||Fastest time (s)||Wind (m/s)||Athlete||Country||Date||Location|
|1||10.01||+0.0||Darrel Brown||Trinidad and Tobago||24 August 2003||Paris|
|+1.6||Jeff Demps||United States||28 June 2008||Eugene|
|+0.9||Yoshihide Kiryu||Japan||29 April 2013||Hiroshima|
|4||10.03||+0.7||Marcus Rowland||United States||31 July 2009||Port of Spain|
|5||10.04||+1.7||D'Angelo Cherry||United States||10 June 2009||Fayetteville|
|+0.2||Christophe Lemaitre||France||24 July 2009||Novi Sad|
|7||10.05||+0.1||Adam Gemili||Great Britain||11 July 2012||Barcelona|
|8||10.06||+2.0||Dwain Chambers||Great Britain||25 July 1997||Ljubljana|
|+1.5||Walter Dix||United States||27 May 2005||New York City|
|10||10.07||+2.0||Stanley Floyd||United States||24 May 1980||Austin|
|+1.1||DaBryan Blanton||United States||30 May 2003||Lincoln|
|+0.2||Tamunosiki Atorudibo||Nigeria||8 July 2004||Abuja|
|+0.3||Jimmy Vicaut||France||22 July 2011||Tallinn|
- British sprinter Mark Lewis-Francis recorded a time of 9.97 seconds on 4 August 2001 (aged 18 years, 334 days) but the wind gauge malfunctioned, invalidating the run.
- Nigerian sprinters Davidson Ezinwa and Sunday Emmanuel ran 10.05 (4 January 1990) and 10.06 (26 April 1997), respectively, but without wind gauge.
Junior (under-20) women
Updated 5 May 2012[update]
|Rank||Fastest time (s)||Wind (m/s)||Athlete||Nation||Date||Location|
|1||10.88||+2.0||Marlies Göhr||East Germany||1 July 1977||Dresden|
|2||10.89||+1.8||Katrin Krabbe||East Germany||20 July 1988||Berlin|
|3||11.03||+1.7||Silke Gladisch-Möller||East Germany||8 June 1983||Berlin|
|+0.6||English Gardner||United States||14 May 2011||Tucson|
|5||11.04||+1.4||Angela Williams||United States||5 June 1999||Boise|
|6||11.07||+0.7||Bianca Knight||United States||27 June 2008||Eugene|
|7||11.08||+2.0||Brenda Morehead||United States||21 June 1976||Eugene|
|8||11.11||+0.2||Shakedia Jones||United States||2 May 1998||Westwood|
|+1.1||Joan Uduak Ekah||Nigeria||2 July 1999||Lausanne|
|10||11.12||+2.0||Veronica Campbell-Brown||Jamaica||18 October 2000||Santiago|
|+1.2||Alexandria Anderson||United States||22 June 2006||Indianapolis|
|+1.1||Aurieyall Scott||United States||24 June 2011||Eugene|
Youth (under-18) boys
Updated 11 December 2012[update]
|Rank||Fastest time (s)||Wind (m/s)||Athlete||Country||Date||Location|
|1||10.19||+0.5||Yoshihide Kiryu||Japan||3 November 2012||Fukuroi|
|2||10.23||+0.8||Tamunosiki Atorudibo||Nigeria||23 March 2002||Enugu|
|+1.2||Rynell Parson||United States||21 June 2007||Indianapolis|
|4||10.24||+0.0||Darrel Brown||Trinidad and Tobago||14 April 2001||Bridgetown|
|5||10.25||+1.5||J-Mee Samuels||United States||11 July 2004||Knoxville|
|+1.6||Jeff Demps||United States||1 August 2007||Knoxville|
|7||10.26||+1.2||Deworski Odom||United States||21 July 1994||Lisboa|
|−0.1||Sunday Emmanuel||Nigeria||18 March 1995||Bauchi|
|9||10.27||+0.2||Henry Thomas||United States||19 May 1984||Norwalk|
|+1.6||Curtis Johnson||United States||30 June 1990||Fresno|
|+1.0||Ivory Williams||United States||8 June 2002||Sacramento|
|−0.2||Jazeel Murphy||Jamaica||23 April 2011||Montego Bay|
Youth (under-18) girls
Updated 5 May 2012[update]
|Rank||Fastest time (s)||Wind (m/s)||Athlete||Nation||Date||Location|
|1||11.13||+2.0||Chandra Cheeseborough||United States||21 June 1976||Eugene|
|2||11.14||+1.7||Marion Jones||United States||6 June 1992||Norwalk|
|−0.5||Angela Williams||United States||21 June 1997||Edwardsville|
|4||11.16||+1.2||Gabrielle Mayo||United States||22 June 2006||Indianapolis|
|5||11.17 A||+0.6||Wendy Vereen||United States||3 July 1983||Colorado Springs|
|6||11.20 A||+1.2||Raelene Boyle||Australia||15 June 1968||Mexico City|
|7||11.24||+1.2||Jeneba Tarmoh||United States||22 June 2006||Indianapolis|
|+0.8||Jodie Williams||Great Britain||31 May 2010||Bedford|
|9||11.26||+1.4||Grit Breuer||East Germany||30 June 1989||Dresden|
|+1.2||Bianca Knight||United States||22 June 2006||Indianapolis|
|Classification||Fastest time (s)||Wind (m/s)||Athlete||Country||Date||Location||Ref|
|T11||11.03||+0.4||Lucas Prado||Brazil||9 September 2008||Beijing|
|T12||10.66||−0.4||Elchin Muradov||Azerbaijan||19 June 2010||Imola|
|T13||10.46||+0.6||Jason Smyth||Ireland||1 September 2012||London|
|T32||23.25||+0.0||Martin McDonagh||Ireland||13 August 1999||Nottingham|
|T33||17.67||+0.4||Ahmad Almutairi||Kuwait||8 September 2012||London|
|T34||15.69||+0.1||Walid Ktila||Tunisia||17 January 2012||Kuwait City|
|T35||12.29||−0.3||Yang Sen||People's Republic of China||13 September 2008||Beijing|
|T36||11.90||Evgenii Shvetcov||Russia||22 July 2013||Lyon|||
|T37||11.51||+0.4||Fanie van der Merwe||South Africa||9 September 2012||London|
|+0.4||Yongbin Liang||People's Republic of China||9 September 2012||London|
|T38||10.79||+0.4||Evan O'Hanlon||Australia||1 September 2012||London|
|T42||12.11||Heinrich Popow||Germany||12 July 2013||Leverkusen|||
|T43||10.57||?||Alan Fonteles Cardoso Oliveira||Brazil||28 July 2013||London|
|T44||10.75||?||Richard Browne||United States||28 July 2013||London|
|T45||10.94||+0.2||Yohansson Nascimento||Brazil||6 September 2012||London|
|T46||10.72||+0.0||Ajibola Adeoye||Nigeria||6 September 1992||Barcelona|
|T51||21.11||+1.2||Toni Piispanen||Finland||17 May 2012||Pratteln|
|T52||16.73||+0.4||Paul Nitz||United States||20 May 2012||Nottwil|
|T53||14.47||+0.5||Mickey Bushell||United Kingdom||24 June 2010||Arbon|
|T54||13.63||+1.0||Leo-Pekka Tähti||Finland||1 September 2012||London|
Updated 24 July 2013
|Classification||Fastest time (s)||Wind (m/s)||Athlete||Country||Date||Location||Ref|
|T11||12.01||+1.2||Terezinha Guilhermina||Brazil||5 September 2012||London|
|T12||11.91||+0.6||Zhou Guohua||People's Republic of China||1 September 2012||London|
|T13||11.99||−0.9||Omara Durand||Cuba||17 November 2011||Guadalajara|
|T32||37.67||+0.0||Lindsay Wright||United Kingdom||25 July 1997||Nottingham|
|T33||21.59||−0.4||Kristen Messer||United States||31 August 2012||London|
|T34||17.60||+0.5||Hannah Cockroft||United Kingdom||20 May 2012||Nottwil|
|T35||15.64||−2.3||Liu Ping||People's Republic of China||24 August 2005||Espoo|
|T36||13.82||+0.3||Wang Fang||People's Republic of China||16 September 2008||Beijing|
|T37||13.88||+0.9||Lisa McIntosh||Australia||25 October 2000||Sydney|
|T38||13.10||+0.0||Sophie Hahn||United Kingdom||24 July 2013||Lyon|||
|T42||15.87||−0.3||Martina Caironi||Italy||5 September 2012||London|
|T43||13.27||+0.3||Marlou van Rhijn||Netherlands||1 September 2012||London|
|T44||12.96||Marlou van Rhijn||Netherlands||16 June 2013||Berlin, Germany|||
|T45||14.00||+0.0||G Cole||Canada||2 June 1980||Arnhem|
|T46||11.95||−0.2||Yunidis Castillo||Cuba||4 September 2012||London|
|T51||32.08||+0.0||V Hill||United States||27 August 1989||Stoke Mandeville|
|T52||18.67||+1.7||Michelle Stilwell||Canada||14 July 2012||Windsor|
|T53||16.22||−0.2||Huang Lisha||People's Republic of China||12 September 2008||Beijing|
|T54||15.82||+0.5||Wenjun Liu||People's Republic of China||8 September 2012||London|
Note: Marion Jones was stripped of her gold medal after admitting to drug use, Lawrence was promoted to the silver medal position and Ottey to the bronze. However, due to her own drug controversy in 2004, Thanou was not promoted to the gold medal position, but still retains her silver medal.
World Championship medalists
- 100-yard dash
- National champions 100 metres (men)
- World record progression 100 metres men
- World record progression 100 metres women
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