(L-R) Kerron Clement, Angelo Taylor and Bershawn Jackson celebrate after the men's 400-meter hurdles at the Olympic Games Beijing 2008 on Aug. 18, 2008 in Beijing.
From the thrilling Opening Ceremony to Michael Phelps’ iconic eight gold medals, the Olympic Games Beijing 2008 were truly unforgettable. Relive the 10-year anniversary of the Games through Aug. 24 as TeamUSA.org recaps the daily highlights from Beijing. Here’s a look at Team USA's performance on Day 10, Aug. 18, 2008.
In a jump-off against Canada, the U.S. needed only three of its four riders to win the equestrian team show jumping gold medal on Aug. 18, notching Team USA’s second equestrian medal of the Olympic Games Beijing 2008.
The team of McLain Ward, Laura Kraut, Will Simpson and Beezie Madden secured Team USA’s second gold medal in a row in the event. Ward and Madden were on the U.S. team that also won in 2004 in Athens.
The first half of the Games had been dominated by swimming, and for good reason. Nine days of dramatic performances in the pool led to 31 U.S. swimming medals, the most of any sport. But with Michael Phelps and Co. now wrapped up, attention could turn fully to other sports.
While equestrian and other sports took their time in the spotlight, much attention had turned to track and field, which had begun three days earlier.
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Competing in the iconic Bird’s Nest stadium, U.S. athletes appeared right at home, winning five of Team USA’s seven medals on Day 10.
The highlight came in the men’s 400-meter hurdles, with Angelo Taylor, Kerron Clement and Bershawn Jackson, more commonly known as “Batman,” sweeping the medals. It marked the first podium sweep in the event since 1960, when U.S. men also did so.
In winning, Taylor, also the 2000 champ in the event, followed Edwin Moses in winning gold medals eight years apart. Moses did so in 1976 and 1984. After Taylor’s gold medal in 2000, he missed the 2004 Games in Athens and struggled with injuries and off-track troubles before his comeback in Beijing.
“To go through what I went through and be back on top again, I'm just so blessed right now,” Taylor told the Associated Press.
Stephanie Brown Trafton added Team USA’s second gold medal in track and field, coming in as a relative unknown and leaving with the women’s discus title. Jennifer Stuczynski, meanwhile, won a silver medal in women’s pole vault.
Back at the National Indoor Stadium, recently crowned women’s all-around gymnastics champion Nastia Liukin continued adding to her medal haul with a silver medal on the uneven bars. Although Liukin actually posted the same score as China’s He Kexin, the American placed second due to a controversial tiebreaker. Still, Liukin ended the day with her fourth medal of the Games, with one opportunity still remaining in the balance beam final.
Also on Aug. 10, the U.S. women’s soccer team beat Japan 4-2 in the semifinals to advance to the gold-medal game. Meanwhile, the U.S. men’s basketball and volleyball teams each recorded wins to wrap up pool play undefeated.
Chrös McDougall covered the 2008 Games for the Olympic News Service. He has covered the Olympic movement for TeamUSA.org since 2009 on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc. He is based in Minneapolis-St. Paul.