LaShawn Merritt placed second to fellow American Jeremy Wariner at the 2007 World Championships, but Merritt turned the tables in 2008, defeating Wariner at the Olympic Trials and repeating that feat in Beijing. Merritt then earned a second Olympic gold medal by running for the winning U.S. 4 x 400-meter relay squad. Merritt became the undisputed 400-meter king in 2009, posting the world's top five times and winning the World Championship in 44.06 seconds.
Merritt burst onto the world stage at age 18 by running a 44.93-second indoor 400 in 2005, the fastest 400 ever run by a junior (19-and-under) indoors to that point.
In addition to the silver medal he won in the 400 in 2007, Merritt earned three consecutive World Championship golds in the 4 x 400 relay, from 2005 through 2009.
Merritt placed second in both the 2006 and ’07 U.S. Outdoor Championships and the 2006 U.S. Indoor Championships. He won three gold medals at the 2004 World Junior Championships (400 meters, 4 x 100 and 4 x 400 relays). He finished 2007 ranked second in the world in the 400.
- Height: 6-2
- Weight: 182
- Birth date: June 27, 1986
- Hometown: Suffolk, Virginia
- World Championships: Four
- Personal best: 43.75 seconds