TOKYO – U.S. star Allyson Felix now has the most Olympic medals ever for a female track athlete, after winning a new bronze medal on Friday in the 400 meters at the Tokyo Olympics.
This is Felix’s fifth Olympics and her 10th medal. She first competed in Athens in 2004 and has medaled in every Summer Games since then.
“This one is very different, and it’s very special. And it just took a lot to get here,” Felix said after the race.
Felix’s time Friday of 49.46 is the second-fastest of her career, according to USA Track and Field.
Her medal Friday means Felix now exceeds the record set by Jamaican athlete Merlene Ottey.
It also brings Felix even with the record set by Carl Lewis for the most Olympic medals won by a U.S. track athlete. Lewis warmly congratulated her in a post on Twitter. “35 never looked so good,” he said. “What an amazing career and inspiration.”
“I think people thought I was a long shot for me to even be on the U.S. team. And then, you know, I wasn’t a pick for the medals. But, you know, just give me a shot,” Felix said with a smile.
Finland’s Paavo Nurmi, who competed in the 1920s, has the most all-time Olympic medals for a track athlete, with 12.
Felix may still have a chance to win herself another medal at these Olympics — she’s very likely to compete in the 4×400 relay Saturday night.
As Lewis put it: “Now on to the relay.”