Allyson Felix became the first U.S. woman to win five gold medals in track and field when she anchored the U.S. women’s 400-meter relay team to victory in the 2016 Rio Olympics Friday night.
Recovering from an apparent first-round disqualification that was reversed on appeal but consigned the U.S. team to Lane 1, Tianna Bartoletta, English Gardner, Tori Bowie and Felix won in 41.01 seconds. Jamaica was second, in 41.36, with Britain third in 41.77.
Felix has won eight Olympic medals overall, making her the most decorated woman in U.S. track and field history, but her only individual gold came from the 200 in 2012. She lost the 400 in Rio on a desperate but legal dive by Shaunae Miller of the Bahamas.
“It was just special. I felt like we were really strong tonight,” Felix said of the relay’s resilience. “The adversity made us even more determined and we just kept fighting all the way, through…. Sometimes adversity makes you stronger.”
Felix still has Saturday’s 1,600-meter relay left. The U.S. women’s 1,600-meter relay team had the top first-round time — 3:21.42 — and qualified for Saturday’s final. Jamaica (3:22.38) had the second-best time.
Everywhere you look in these Rio Games, there’s #BlackGirlMagic making Olympic history.
Count Dalilah Muhammad as the latest.
On Thursday night, the 26-year-old New York City native became the first American in Olympic history to win a gold medal in the 400-meter hurdles with a time of 53.13 seconds.Her teammate, Ashley Spencer, won the bronze medal with a time of 53.72 seconds.
RIO DE JANEIRO – Sweep! Team USA became the first nation in Olympic history to win all three medals in the women’s 100-meter hurdles.
Brianna Rollins won the gold, Nia Ali the silver and Kristi Castlin, with a furious finish, took the bronze Wednesday night. “It’s like a sisterhood,” said Rollins, who trains with Castlin and has also known Ali for years. “I’m so grateful and blessed that we were able to accomplish this together.”
And Team USA swept without world-record holder Keni Harrison, who did not make the U.S. team from a loaded field at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Track and Field.
“You could pretty much equate us to a Dream Team,” Castlin said after the trials.
Following the race, the three Team USA athletes huddled on the track just past the finish line, waiting for the results: Rollins at 12.48 and Ali at 12.59 popped up quickly in the top two positions. There was a pause, then an outpouring of applause as Castlin came up next at 12.61.
“I knew I was in second, but I didn’t know what else happened,” Ali said. “So when we looked up at the screen, we were like, ‘Did we do it? Did we do it?’ and then we saw Kristi’s name come up, and it was like, ‘Yes!’” “We all had a good feeling that it was going to be her.”
Castlin, known as a “closer,” came from as far back as seventh place to edged Cindy Ofili of Great Britain by .02 seconds.
“I really couldn’t breathe for one second,” Castlin said. “My thing was not so much a bronze for myself but really just upholding the team. We came into this together. Track and field, a lot of times athletes go into it as individuals. But we had a different perspective. We came into it as a team, for girl power, for USA. So we were able to do the first sweep in U.S. women’s history. It feels good to be a history-maker.”
The sweep was the 61st in U.S. Olympic track and field history going back to 1896, and the first in the sport since the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, when Americans conquered the podium in the men’s 400-meter and 400-meter hurdles. It was also the first for Team USA on the women’s side in track and field.
Ethiopian runner Genzebe Dibaba has set a new world record in the 1,500-meter run as she ran 3:50.08 at the Monaco Diamond League meeting on Friday.
“I’m the first from Ethiopia to get the 1,500-meter world record. That is amazing,” Dibaba said after the race. “I think Tirunesh (Dibaba) will be happy. All Ethiopia will be happy.” Dibaba’s time surpasses a 22-year-old world record of 3:50.46 by Qu Yunxia of China set in Sept. 1993.
The 24-year-old Dibaba said she may attempt the 1,500-meter/5,000-meter double at next month’s IAAF World Championships in Beijing. No woman has ever medaled at both distances. She will have to run the 1,500-meter race three times (Aug. 22, heat; Aug. 23 semi-final; Aug. 25 final) over three days. The 5,000-meter run will have two rounds—a heat on Aug. 27 and a final on Aug. 30.
Dibaba now has her sights set on the 5,000-meter world record of 14:11.15, set by her sister, Tirunesh, in 2008. Genzebe Dibaba ran 14:15.41 at the Paris Diamond Legaue Meeting on July 4.
Second place finisher Sifan Hassan finished in 3:56.05. Two-time Olympian Shannon Rowbury ran 3:56.29 to set a new American record in the event. The previous record of 3:57.12 was set by Mary Slaney in 1983.
Dibaba’s World Record splits: 400-meters at 60.3; 800-meters at 2:04; 1,200-meters at 3:04 before crossing the finish line in 3:50.7.
At 77, Rose Green is still brushing off her cleats and maintaining her status as one of the fastest sprinters in her age group, My Fox DC reports. It’s a pretty impressive feat, not only because of her age but also because she took up the sport just last year and rose to the top of the ranks in such a short time.
According to My Fox DC, Green, a resident of Prince George’s County, Md., has won medals in several competitions, including the 200- and 400-meter races, and is the nation’s record holder in her age group in the 60-meter sprint. Green, a great-grandmother, is trained vigorously by coach Cortez Austin. He’s also her boyfriend.
“She’s world-class,” Austin said about Green’s work ethic and ability. She trains seven days a week.
Green says that she doesn’t get any special treatment from Austin. “He’ll tell me, ‘Your form is not right, you’re not going as fast as you should,’ ” Green said. “He’s a very strict coach even though we are lovers.”
Green is turning into a local celebrity in her Cameron Grove adult community, and she’s helping students and other runners strive to greatness as well. “She is like a celebrity,” said Austin. “It’s no question that she is an inspiration.”
“I hear that so many times that I’m starting to believe that I’m an inspiration to all these people,” Green said.
Green is currently training for the national senior championships in July. “I’m working towards the world record,” she said. “Why not?”
Read more and see video of this inspiring woman at My Fox DC.
This was Mo Farah‘s immortal race: the victory he called “the sweetest by far”, the triumph that thrust him deeper into the realm of athletics‘ gods. Under cooling Moscow skies Farah fended off a sustained counterattack from Hagos Gebrhiwet and Isiah Kiplangat Koech to win his fifth global title, two more than any British athlete in history. He also became only the second man, after Ethiopia’s Kenenisa Bekele, to achieve the double-double of 5,000m and 10,000m golds at the Olympics and the following world championships. This is the company Farah now keeps.
But it was harder than last year: Farah admitted so himself. The teeth had to be gritted and clamped with 100m to go as greyhounds from Kenya and Ethiopia sniffed out and scampered after their prey. His battle roar was also delayed until moments before the line, when his lungs demanded release and he finally accepted that victory was safe. Then came the familiar gestures: eyes kindled and hands open in astonished glee before his body flopped on the track, tension escaping like air from a popped balloon after a job well done.
“I never thought in my career I would achieve something like this,” said Farah, who won 5,000m gold in 13min 26.98sec, a step ahead of Gebrhiwet and Koech who took silver and bronze in the same time of 13:27.26sec. “This was very tough – it was all left to the last two laps and I had a lot of pressure. It was hard this year, harder than last year.”
Usain Bolt actually needed encouragement from the crowd to strike his famous “lightning bolt” pose after reclaiming the 100-meter world title on Sunday. Maybe that’s because the usually ebullient Jamaican runner has found a new gimmick. An incredible photo has surfaced, showing a bolt of lightning striking overhead at the IAAF world championships in Moscow just after Bolt crossed the finish line in 9.77 seconds, well ahead of American runner-up Justin Gatlin (9.85).
The race took place in a heavy downpour, which led to a slow start by Bolt, the two-time reigning Olympic champion and world record holder in the event. But he quickly overtook Gatlin, the 2004 Olympic gold medalist who upset Bolt during a meet in Rome earlier this year. Bolt, who lost the world title two years ago due to a false start, did nothing flashy as he crossed the finish line or afterward, straying from the usual antics his fans have become accustomed to.
But, then again, Mother Nature seems to have taken care of that for him.