Moments after her name was announced at the starting line, Sha’Carri Richardson dramatically removed her trademark orange wig and tossed it onto the track behind her. As the crowd “oohed” and awed, Richardson revealed her new do—long braids, which “were shaped into a star just over her right ear, a reminder to everyone of her place in the sport.”
With a time of 10.82 seconds, “American’s most colorful sprint star won the 100-meter title…at the U.S. championships on Friday night.”
The win was undoubtedly a pinnacle moment for the track star whose first national title was stripped away due to a doping violation after Richardson had tested positive for marijuana use in 2021. Richardson admitted to using the banned substance “to relieve stress after learning her mother had died.” Her suspension “triggered a debate about whether marijuana should really be on the banned list.”
Unfortunately, this episode also caused her to lose the chance to compete on the global stage in the Tokyo Olympics.
After a disappointing show last summer at nationals, Richardson turned it around this year and, thus far, has been having an incredible season. “In April, she ran a wind-aided 10.57 at the Miramar Invitational in Florida, the fourth-fastest all-conditions time ever recorded; the next month in Doha, Qatar, she tallied her first Diamond League win.”
During a post-race interview after her victory, Richardson said, “I’m ready mentally, physically, and emotionally, and I’m here to stay,” adding, “I’m not back, I’m better.”
All eyes were on Richardson this last week. On Thursday, in the opening heats, she ran 10.71, which was the best time of the year. But she’s leaving Eugene, Oregon, with only the second fastest time recorded this year after Shericka Jackson won Jamaica’s championship 100m race in 10.65 seconds.
This win at Oregon’s Hayward Field qualified Richardson for the world championships in Budapest, Hungary. From August 19-27, Richardson will compete in “her first major international meet” alongside the second and third-place finishers Brittany Brown and Tamari Davis.
Jamaica’s Jackson and USA’s Richardson are the two fastest contenders vying to win the 100m race at the world championships next month. Richardson is eager to clinch her first world title, and we’re excited to be along for the ride.