Russian Natalya Antyukh won the women’s 400 metres hurdles Olympic gold Wednesday by posting a personal best of 52.70 seconds for the top medal, holding off Lashinda Demus of the US, who took silver in 52.77.
“This has been very special. I cannot express the words,” said Antyukh, who took the bronze in Athens in the 400 metres flat.
“I only started the hurdles in 2009. I have done a lot of work, to get a PB is amazing – a world record soon would be great,” she said.
Demus, the reigning world champion, said she was “grateful to be on the podium.”
“Of course I wanted the gold medal. I wanted it so bad I can’t explain how bad. I started crying because I knew how bad I wanted it.”
Hejnova said she was shocked by her performance.
“It is a fantastic day for me. I didn’t expect it, as I was fourth at the European Championships,” she said, referring to the competition in Helsinki in June.
Defending champion Melaine Walker of Jamaica crashed out in the heats.