Boise native and 2002 Bishop Kelly graduate Nick Symmonds finished fifth in the 800-meter final at the London Games, despite running a personal best time of 1 minutes, 42.95 seconds.
Kenya's David Rudisha won the race in 1:40.91 seconds a new world record. Rudisha was the previous world record holder and a heavy favorite for the gold medal. Nijel Amos of Botswana finished second at 1:41.73 and Kenya's Timothy Kitum finished third at 1:42.53. American Duane Solomon was fourth at 1:42.82.
The 28-year-old Symmonds was in the back for much of the race and used a late kick to pass several runners in the final stretch. The race was run at a blistering pace as seven of the eight competitors set personal bests, including Rudisha's world record and three national records (Kenya, Botswana and Ethiopia).
Solomon and Symmonds ran the second- and third-fastest times ever for Americans in the event, according to USA Track and Field.
"I expected 1:43 to medal," Solomon told the Associated Press after the race. "Man, it's crazy that 1:40 won the race and there were two 1:42s that didn't even medal which is unheard of. That just shows you the talent that we have and a great field. I guess Rudisha showed that he's on another level. He's the best in the world for sure."
Symmonds agreed, telling the AP: "That race is going to go down as the greatest 800 ever."
Symmonds previous best time in the 800 was 1:43.76. He reached the semifinals in the 800 at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. He has reached the finals in each of last two world championships and now the Olympics.