Tokyo previews – Women’s 4 x 400m Relay

Ludicrous strength in depth once more resides in the USA but this could be tight. Despite US riches, Jamaica have a strong team and could well compete. Here’s our women’s 4 x 400 relay preview.


Thursday 5 August 11:25 UK Time (Round 1) Saturday 7 August 13:35 UK Time (Final)

Fastest times since 2019

Ranking since 2019Time Team
103:18.9United States
303:22.3Texas A&M
503:23.0Great Britain & NI
603:24.0United States U20

British interest

Great Britain have sent a good team to Tokyo. Laviai Nielsen ran 50.83 in 2019. Jodie Williams, Nicole Yeargin and Ama Pipi have run 50.94, 50.96 and 51.08 respectively this year. Hannah Williams, 51.60, provides some able support.


  • Australia – Ellie Beer, Angeline Blackburn, Kendra Hubbard, Bendere Oboya, Anneliese Rubie-Renshaw
  • Bahamas – Doneisha Anderson, Lacarthea Cooper, Shaunae Miller-Uibo, Megan Moss, Anthonique Strachan
  • Belarus – Yuliya Bliznets, Aliaksandra Khilmanovich, Asteria Limai, Anna Mikhaylova, Kristina Mulyarchik
  • Belgium – Cynthia Bolingo, Paulien Couckuyt, Camille Laus, Hanne Maudens, Naomi van den Broeck, Imke Vervaet
  • Canada – Alicia Brown, Kyra Constantine, Lauren Gale, Natassha McDonald, Madeline Price
  • Cuba – Rose Mary Almanza, Sahily Diago Mesa, Roxana Gomez, Zurian Hechavarria, Lisneidy Veitia
  • France – Amandine Brossier, Floria Guei, Diana Iscaye, Sokhna Lacoste, Brigitte Ntiamoah, Sounkamba Sylla
  • Great Britain & NI – Laviai Nielsen, Ama Pipi, Jodie Williams, Hannah Williams, Nicole Yeargin
  • Italy – Rebecca Borga, Maria Benedicta Chigbolu, Ayomide Folorunso, Raphaela Boaheng Lukudo, Petra Nardelli, Anna Polinari
  • Jamaica – Tovea Jenkins, Roneisha McGregor, Candice McLeod, Stephenie Ann McPherson, Stacey Ann Williams
  • Netherlands – Andrea Bouma, Lisanne De Witte, Lieke Klaver, Hanneke Oosterwegel, Anne van de Wiel.
  • Poland – Iga Baumgart-Witan, Kinga Gacka, Malgorzata Holub-Kowalik, Natalia Kaczmarek, Anna Kielbasinska, Justyna Swiety-Ersetic
  • Switzerland – Annina Fahr, Yasmin Giger, Sarah King, Silke Lemmens, Rachel Pellaud, Lea Sprunger
  • Ukraine – Anastasiya Bryzhina, Yana Kachur, Tetyana Melnyk, Natalya Pyrozhenko-Chornomaz
  • USA – Kendall Ellis, Allyson Felix, Quanera Hayes, Wadeline Jonatas, Kaylin Whitney

The favourites

Team USA are the events favourites even though they didn’t compete in the World Relays earlier this year. Four of the five have run under 50 seconds and the fifth Kaylin Whitney has run 50.29. Depending on how she does in the individual 400m Allyson Felix could be targeting a seventh or possibly eighth Olympic gold. Only two in track and field, Paavo Nurmi and Carl Lewis (9 each), have won more than her six golds. Allyson Felix (49.26), Wadeline Jonatas (49.60), Quenera Hayes (49.78) and Kendall Ellis make up the likely quartet.

I expect Jamaica to be the team that pushes them hardest. Roneisha McGregor (50.02), Candice McLeod (49.91), Stephenie Ann McPherson (49.61) and Stacey Ann Williams (50.14) could genuinely make it a battle.

Cuba won the World Relays earlier this year but their 3.28.41 clocking will not be enough in Tokyo. They have Rose Mary Almanza, the in form 800m star, Roxana Gomez (50.76), Lisneidy Veitia (51.65) and Zurian Hechavarria (52.43).

Poland were second that day and boast some decent strength in depth. Iga Baumgart-Witan (51.02), Kinga Gacka (52.53), Malgorzata Holub-Kowalik (51.13), Natalia Kaczmarek (50.72), Anna Kielbasinska (51.51) and Justyna Swiety-Ersetic (50.41) will likely have them competing for bronze alongside Cuba and perhaps GB & NI.

A wildcard option is Bahamas but they will need to rely on a monster leg from Shaunae Miller-Uibo (48.37 best). With her 200/400 doubling this could be a step too far. The rest of the team haven’t run under 52 seconds.

A final prospect will be the Netherlands who could well snatch bronze. Femke Bol is in form (50.37) and she is aided by sub 51 runners Lisanne de Witte (50.77) and Lieke Klaver (50.98). They may be one runner short to contest the medals with none of the others having run under 53 seconds.

Our medal predictions

  1. USA
  2. Jamaica
  3. GB & NI


WR: 3.15.17 Soviet Union (1988)

OR: 3.15.17 Soviet Union (1988 Seoul)

Enjoy our women’s 4 x 400 preview? Check out the rest below.

Featured image “4 x 400m Preparation” by Lim CK is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

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