2009 World Championships in Athletics – Men's 400 metres
The United States had a strong tradition in the event, with an American topping the Olympic 400 m podium every time since the 1988 Olympics. Similar to the 2007 World Championships, Jeremy Wariner and LaShawn Merritt were the clear favourites. However, on this occasion recent form favoured the Olympic champion Merritt instead of the reigning world champion Wariner. Both Americans were undefeated that season but Merritt held the world-leading time of 44.50 seconds. A gold or silver medallist outside of these two competitors seemed unlikely; Bahamian Chris Brown, Irishman David Gillick, Frenchman Leslie Djhone and the other two runners from the United States (Gil Roberts and Lionel Larry) were seen to be capable of a bronze at best.
On the first day, Ramon Miller surprised as the fastest qualifier in the heats, scoring a new personal best of 45 seconds. Tabarie Henry, Djhone and Renny Quow were the next fastest, and African record holder Gary Kikaya was most high-profile casualty of the first round, having been disqualified for a lane infraction.
United States (USA)
United States (USA)
Trinidad and Tobago (TRI)
Prior to the competition, the established records were as follows.
|World record||Michael Johnson (USA)||43.18||Seville, Spain||26 August 1999|
|Championship record||Michael Johnson (USA)||43.18||Seville, Spain||26 August 1999|
|World Leading||LaShawn Merritt (USA)||44.50||Baie-Mahault, France||3 July 2009|
|African record||Gary Kikaya (COD)||44.10||Stuttgart, Germany||9 September 2006|
|Asian record||Mohamed Amer Al-Malky (OMA)||44.56||Budapest, Hungary||12 August 1988|
|North American record||Michael Johnson (USA)||43.18||Seville, Spain||26 August 1999|
|South American record||Sanderlei Parrela (BRA)||44.29||Seville, Spain||26 August 1999|
|European record||Thomas Schönlebe (GDR)||44.33||Rome, Italy||3 September 1987|
|Oceanian record||Darren Clark (AUS)||44.38||Seoul, South Korea||26 September 1988|
|A time||B time|
|August 18, 2009||11:05||Heats|
|August 19, 2009||18:15||Semifinals|
|August 21, 2009||21:20||Final|
Qualification: First 3 in each heat(Q) and the next 3 fastest(q) advance to the semifinals.
Key: NR = National record, PB = Personal best, Q = qualification by place in heat, q = qualification by overall place, SB = Seasonal best
First 2 in each semifinal(Q) and the next 2 fastest(q) advance to the final.
|LaShawn Merritt||United States (USA)||44.06||WL|
|Jeremy Wariner||United States (USA)||44.60||SB|
|Renny Quow||Trinidad and Tobago (TRI)||45.02|
|4||Tabarie Henry||U.S. Virgin Islands (ISV)||45.42|
|5||Chris Brown||Bahamas (BAH)||45.47|
|6||David Gillick||Ireland (IRL)||45.53|
|7||Michael Bingham||Great Britain & N.I. (GBR)||45.56|
|8||Leslie Djhone||France (FRA)||45.90|