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Sha’Carri Richardson won the women’s 100-meter world title Monday, outsprinting a star-studded field to take a gold medal in legendary fashion.
Running on the far outside in Lane 9, Richardson finished in 10.65 seconds to match the year’s best time and set the world-championship record, according to AP News.
Sha’Carri Richardson is the fastest woman on Earth
Sha’Carri Richardson beat Jamaicans Shericka Jackson by .07 seconds and five-time champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce by .12.
After making the “improbable” look easy on the grandest stage, Richardson walked past members of the traditional media until she found Black media members.
“I’m here, I told y’all,” Richardson told the track announcer right after the race. “I’m going to stay humble. I’m not back, I’m better and I’ll continue to be better.”
AP News reports this was Richardson’s first major competition on the world stage and she was listed as a 5-1 underdog even though she came in as the American champion and had bested Jackson, who also has run 10.65 this year, the previous two times they met in 2023.
The race featured four of the eight fastest runners of all time, including Marie-Josée Ta Lou, who finished fourth.
Though it was clear Richardson had finished ahead of all those runners to her left in the gold-medal race, the 23-year-old looked stunned when she crossed the line.
Sha’Carri Richardson blew a kiss toward the sky, cast her eyes on that beautiful scoreboard and walked toward the stands in a daze to accept the American flag and congratulations from Fraser-Pryce, Dina Asher-Smith of Britain and others.
Richardson made a way out of no way
The vagaries of track and field’s rulebook had placed her in the so-called Semifinal of Death, paired against Jackson and Ta Lou in a race, with only the top two guaranteed spots in the final.
Richardson’s win also marked the first women’s 100-meter world championship by an American since Tori Bowie did so in 2017.