Athletics at the 2004 Summer Olympics – Women's 400 metres hurdles
|Women's 400 metres hurdles
at the Games of the XXVIII Olympiad
|Venue||Athens Olympic Stadium|
|Competitors||34 from 25 nations|
|Athletics at the
2004 Summer Olympics
|100 m hurdles||women|
|110 m hurdles||men|
|400 m hurdles||men||women|
|4×100 m relay||men||women|
|4×400 m relay||men||women|
|20 km walk||men||women|
|50 km walk||men|
The first round had split a full roster of runners into five heats with the first two gaining a direct qualification and then the next six fastest across all heats advancing to the semifinals. The top four runners in each of the three semifinal heats moved on directly to the final.
The final was expected to witness four early-season favorites, U.S. top runner Sheena Johnson, 1999 world champion Jana Pittman, current world record holder Yuliya Pechenkina, and two-time European champion Ionela Târlea-Manolache, challenging each other for the Olympic title. Inside the stadium, however, the raucous Greek crowd turned their attention on home favorite Faní Halkiá, who had previously lowered the Olympic record by 0.05 of a second in the semifinals. From the start in lane four, Halkia drew level with Pittman outside her at the halfway turn, until she quickly pulled away from the field on the last hundred metres and cleared the final hurdle. With none of the pre-race favorites willing to chase her on the home stretch, Halkia raced comfortably to an Olympic gold. Behind her, Târlea-Manolache and Ukraine's Tetyana Tereshchuk-Antipova came through on the inside to take the silver and bronze medals respectively. Running bravely against a tore knee injury, Pittman managed to finish the race in fifth place, while Pechenkina stumbled behind on a wretched run to round out the field in last.
Halkia's triumph proved to be a redemption for the host nation Greece in track and field, after the anti-doping scandal and suspicious affair on 2000 Olympic medalists and sprinters Kostas Kenteris and Ekaterini Thanou that tainted the start of the Games.
Prior to the competition[update], the existing World and Olympic records were as follows.
|World record||Yuliya Pechenkina (RUS)||52.34 s||Tula, Russia||8 August 2003|
|Olympic record||Deon Hemmings (JAM)||52.82 s||Atlanta, United States||31 July 1996|
The following records were established during the competition:
|22 August||Semifinal 2||Faní Halkiá||Greece||52.77||OR|
The qualification period for Athletics was 1 January 2003 to 9 August 2004. For the women's 400 metres hurdles, each National Olympic Committee was permitted to enter up to three athletes that had run the race in 55.60 seconds or faster during the qualification period. If an NOC had no athletes that qualified under that standard, one athlete that had run the race in 56.25 seconds or faster could be entered.
All times are Greece Standard Time (UTC+2)
|Saturday, 21 August 2004||09:05||Round 1|
|Sunday, 22 August 2004||21:20||Semifinals|
|Wednesday, 25 August 2004||21:55||Final|
Qualification rule: The first two finishers in each heat (Q) plus the next six fastest overall runners (q) advanced to the semifinals.
|1||2||Yuliya Pechenkina||Russia||53.57||Q, SB|
|3||8||Ulrike Urbansky||Germany||55.15||q, SB|
|7||3||Aïssata Soulama||Burkina Faso||57.60||PB|
|3||5||Natalya Torshina-Alimzhanova||Kazakhstan||55.22||q, SB|
|6||6||Surita Febbraio||South Africa||56.49|
|2||4||Brenda Taylor||United States||54.72||Q|
|1||5||Faní Halkiá||Greece||53.85||Q, NR|
|2||7||Lashinda Demus||United States||54.66||Q|
|4||8||Debbie-Ann Parris-Thymes||Jamaica||55.21||q, SB|
|5||4||Yvonne Harrison||Puerto Rico||55.84|
|6||3||Mame Tacko Diouf||Senegal||57.25|
|1||4||Małgorzata Pskit||Poland||54.75||Q, PB|
|2||3||Sheena Johnson||United States||54.81||Q|
|3||8||Huang Xiaoxiao||China||54.81||q, PB|
Qualification rule: The first four finishers in each heat (Q) moved on to the final.
|1||6||Yuliya Pechenkina||Russia||53.31||Q, SB|
|3||1||Sheena Johnson||United States||54.32||Q|
|4||4||Brenda Taylor||United States||55.02||Q|
|1||4||Faní Halkiá||Greece||52.77||Q, OR|
|2||3||Ionela Târlea-Manolache||Romania||53.32||Q, SB|
|3||6||Tetyana Tereshchuk-Antipova||Ukraine||53.37||Q, NR|
|5||5||Lashinda Demus||United States||54.32|
|4||8||Sheena Johnson||United States||53.83|
|7||2||Brenda Taylor||United States||54.97|
- "Halkia win sends Athens crowd wild". CNN. 25 August 2004. Retrieved 14 October 2015.
- "Halkia gold gives Greeks a heroine to cheer". The Telegraph. 25 August 2004. Retrieved 14 October 2015.
- "Halkia sends Greece wild". BBC Sport. 25 August 2004. Retrieved 14 October 2015.
- "IAAF Athens 2004: Women's 400m Hurdles Heats". Athens 2004. IAAF. Retrieved 15 October 2015.
- "IAAF Athens 2004: Women's 400m Hurdles Semifinals". Athens 2004. IAAF. Retrieved 12 October 2015.
- "IAAF Athens 2004: Women's 400m Hurdles Final". Athens 2004. IAAF. Retrieved 12 October 2015.