Olympics 2016: Why was the U.S. 4×100 relay team disqualified?

Published 8:59 pm Friday, August 19, 2016

Staff and Wire Reports

The U.S. men’s 4×100 relay team thought it won a bronze medal in the Rio Olympics 2016 tonight.

They had draped flags around themselves and were celebrating for minutes before officials disqualified them.

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So, why was the U.S. 4×100 relay team disqualified tonight?

Unfortunately, on the Mike Rodgers to Justin Gatlin  baton pass was apparently early that disqualified the U.S. out of the bronze medal. The exchange appears to have been made outside the zone.

The U.S. team members watching the replay right now are in disbelief and don’t see on the replay that they should be qualified.

“We did the best we could do out there…I felt like it was a clean exchange through the zone,” said Justin Gatlin, speaking on NBC moments ago.

The gold medal was won by Jamaica with a dramatic closing leg by Usain Bolt, who concluded his Olympics career with nine gold medals.

Usain Bolt has completed his triple-triple, anchoring the Jamaica 4×100-meter relay to victory in the final to ensure three gold medals at three consecutive Olympics.

Bolt, who has won the 100, 200 and 4×100 relay gold medals at Beijing, London and now Rio, crossed in 37.27 seconds on Friday.

Japan set an Asian record to take the silver in 37.60, holding off the third-place Americans by 0.02.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.