Why did Michael Johnson return his gold medal? | The Sun
MICHAEL Johnson is a retired sprinter whose career would be the envy of many runners.
But after his retirement, one of his gold medals was returned due to a shock controversy over the win.
Why did Michael Johnson return his gold medal?
During the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Michael became the first male Olympian to defend his title in the 400 metres.
He didn't run in the 200 metre race due to failing to qualify at the U.S. trials because of an injury.
Despite this Michael won a second gold medal as the anchor of the 4 x 400-metre relay team.
In 2008, having announced his retirement during the 2000 Olympicgames, he returned his relay gold medal to the International Olympic Committee.
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His decision came after a team mate admitted to taking performance-enhancing drugs for the race.
Michael wasn't required to return his medal but he felt it was tainted due to his strong anti-doping stance.
How many gold medals did Michael Johnson win?
Michael has won four Olympic gold medals and is regarded as one of the greatest sprinters of all time.
He dominated the 200m and 400m during the 1990s and went seven years undefeated in the latter event.
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Michael decided to focus full-time on athletics in 1990 and excelled, and a year later was crowned world 200m champion.
Sadly, he succumbed to food poisoning which denied him the opportunity to go to the Olympics in Barcelona, but later helped the US 4 x 400m relay team secure a victory that gave him his first taste of Olympic gold.
By 1993, Michael had embarked on a sequence of 58 races at 400m where he was undefeated, and was hailed the "Superman".
The highlight of his career was at the Atlanta Olympic Games in 1996.
83,000 people watched as Michael ran in his golden running shoes and completed a remarkable 200-400m double.
This achievement hadn't been matched before or since in men's athletics.
He achieved a time of 19.32 for 200m, a world record that stood for 12 years before being broken by Usain Bolt.
In 1999, Michael set a new record for the 400m at 43.18 seconds.
It was broken by Wayde Van Niekerk in Rio, 17 years later.
Michael was known for his distinctive running style which is characterised by an upright gait and short stride which earned him the nickname "the duck".
Michael retired in 2001.
What does Michael Johnson do now?
Michael has remained in the sporting world as a TV commentator at various athletics events, including as a pundit for the BBC.
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He was also a coach in the American Flag Football League and managed the career of athlete Jeremy Wariner.
Jeremy won Olympic gold during the 400m at Athens in 2004.
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