Johnson: Wayde massacred my record!

Rio de Janeiro - South African Wayde Van Niekerk smashed Michael Johnson's long-standing 400m record when he stormed to Olympic gold on Sunday.

Van Niekerk, running in the unfavoured lane eight, blasted off the final corner to time 43.03, 0.15 quicker than Johnson's previous world best set in Seville in 1999, a record that had taken on mythical-like standing.

"I believed I could get the world record," the 24-year-old South African said.

"I've dreamed of this medal since forever. I am blessed."

"I have never seen anything like that," Johnson told BBC, for whom he works as an analyst.

"It is amazing. That was a massacre by Van Niekerk. This young man has done something truly special. He could go under 43 seconds - I tried and failed.

"Being out in lane eight helped him, he was away from James and Merritt. He was running a time-trial.

"That was some style he broke it in," Johnson said of Van Niekerk, who made sprint history by becoming the first athlete to dip under benchmark times in the 100, 200 and 400m.


We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Voting Booth
What is your favourite sport to watch on TV?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Rugby
42% - 8979 votes
Cricket
11% - 2328 votes
Football
19% - 4097 votes
Athletics
2% - 529 votes
Boxing
1% - 191 votes
Cycling
2% - 499 votes
Golf
5% - 1046 votes
Motorsport
9% - 1819 votes
Tennis
3% - 727 votes
Water sports
1% - 198 votes
American sports
1% - 267 votes
MMA / WWE / UFC
3% - 680 votes
Vote