Athlete Quotes - Men's 400m Final
LaShawn Merritt, Olympic Qualifier, First Place
"It was kind of windy out today, but I stepped on the track pretty confident. I came into the finals knowing that now was the time to do what I needed to do."
"When I got to the curve, I was smelling Beijing and victory, so I just wanted to bring it home."
"Every time a man comes out on this level he is going to perform to the best of his ability. We are taking three horses to Beijing and representing the U.S."
"When I compete, he's not in my pocket, so I'm not worried about beating him. My focus was to cross the line first. I had to prove to myself that I could make this team and compete in Beijing and that's what I did."
"I ran the 200 in 19.8 seconds and that definitely has to help distribute my speed all the way around."
"I feel blessed to make it to these games. I have been coming in second in the U.S. for the past couple of years, but after today this moment is over."
Jeremy Wariner, Olympic Qualifier, Second Place
"Everybody wants to come out and win. My main goal was to have fun and make the team. You win some, you lose some."
"I need to stay focused on my race. I didn't execute the way I wanted to. I know what I need to do."
"At the Trials, it's one thing to win, but I'm happy I made the team."
"I'm not real disappointed, but I am disappointed in how I ran the race. I just didn't run how how I should have."
"I'm happy to be on the team and I'm happy for the LaShawn (Merritt). I'm going to fly home tomorrow and train harder. I'm going to meets in Rome, Paris and Stockholm, so I have chances to bounce back."
"This motivates me and I know I need to train harder. I got to 200 meters and let (Merritt) get me in the end. I made a move at 150 meters and I forced it instead of using my kick at the end. I didn't execute right. I think I'm still the favorite (at the Olympics). I've been there before and I know what it takes to win."
David Neville, Olympic Qualifier, Third Place
"It was just a great experience. I knew that all I had to do was get out my first 50 meters and I could hold it down the backstretch, which I did in the semifinal race, but I did not get out the way I needed to in the semifinal race. I knew once I did that I had the strength to finish and go strong. I got to 300 meters and I didn't see anybody at first until LaShawn [Merritt] passed me and I was surprised, but I also knew I had the strength. I knew that God was with me. I have a strong faith and I use that to govern everything that I do in life. I know that it was only by the grace of God that I am standing here in front of you today."
"My senior year in high school, after our regional track meet, I'm from Indiana where we have regionals to get ready for state, right there I had an interview and I told the reporter I would be in Beijing. This was when I was a senior in high school. I stuck with it and I kept my faith. My faith is the only reason why I can say with certainty that I would be in Beijing. I said it after nationals once I won that I was going to be Beijing and look out for me. I know that I can only speak those things with the strength of God. That's why I can say it with such certainty."