South Africa’s Wayde Van Niekerk set a new world record in the Men’s Olympic Games 400 metres final, beating the record set by American Michael Johnson 17 years ago. The conditions were right on Sunday for a new world record in the men’s 400 metres final in Rio de Janeiro. South African Wayde Van Niekerk was up to the challenge as he smashed Michael Johnson’s record of 43.18 seconds, set in 1999, and set a new one at 43.03, surpassing two Olympic champions on his way. Grenadian sprinter and defending Olympic champion Kirani James won silver – and the USA’s LaShawn Merritt (gold in Beijing 2008) won bronze.