Russian Natalya Antyukh won the women's 400 metres hurdles Olympic gold Wednesday by posting a personal best of 52.70 seconds for the top medal, holding off Lashinda Demus of the US, who took silver in 52.77.
Zuzana Hejnova of the Czech Republic received the bronze for 53.38.
"This has been very special. I cannot express the words," said Antyukh, who took the bronze in Athens in the 400 metres flat.
"I only started the hurdles in 2009. I have done a lot of work, to get a PB is amazing - a world record soon would be great," she said.
Demus, the reigning world champion, said she was "grateful to be on the podium."
"Of course I wanted the gold medal. I wanted it so bad I can't explain how bad. I started crying because I knew how bad I wanted it."
Hejnova said she was shocked by her performance.
"It is a fantastic day for me. I didn't expect it, as I was fourth at the European Championships," she said, referring to the competition in Helsinki in June.
Defending champion Melaine Walker of Jamaica crashed out in the heats.