Tennessee graduate Justin Gatlin made history Sunday, August 14 after capturing a silver medal in the 100m dash, becoming the first American track and field athlete to capture three medals of any kind in the event.
Gatlin held a brief lead before Jamaica’s Usain Bolt blazed down the final stretch and edged the former Volunteer. Gatlin finished with a time of 9.89 seconds, just short of Bolt’s 9.81.
With the silver, Gatlin now holds five Olympic medals overall. During the 2004 Olympics in Athens, he claimed gold in the 100m dash, bronze in the 200m dash and silver as a part of the 4x100m relay team. During the London games eight years later, Gatlin won bronze in the 100m dash.
Gatlin’s silver brings Tennessee’s total Olympic medal count to 52, with 16 coming from track and field athletes. Gatlin looks to up the total to 54, with the 200m dash and 4x100m relay qualifiers taking place on Tuesday and Thursday, respectively.