Allyson Felix. (AFP Photo)
In our countdown to the Tokyo Olympics we are bringing you regular profiles of some of the biggest medal contenders at the upcoming quadrennial event. This is the profile of one of the most decorated female track and field athletes in the history of the Games – Allyson Felix
Allyson Felix (Athletics)
Date of Birth: November 18, 1985
Birth Place: Los Angeles, California, US
Sport/Event(s): 400m, 4x400m relay, Mixed 4x400m relay
*2004 Silver in 200m at Athens Olympics
*2005 Gold in 200m at World Athletics Championships
*2007 Gold in 200m, 4x100m relay and 4x400m relay at World Athletics Championships
*2008 Gold in 4x400m relay and silver in 200m at Beijing Olympics
*2009 Gold in 200m and 4x400m relay at World Athletics Championships
*2011 Gold in 4x100m relay and 4x400m relay, silver in 400m and bronze in 200m at World Athletics Championships
*2012 Gold in 200m, 4x100m relay and 4x400m relay at London Olympics
*2015 Gold in 400m and silver medals in 4x100m relay and 4x400m relay at World Athletics Championships
*2016 Gold in 4x100m relay and 4x400m relay and Silver in 400m at Rio Olympics
*2017 Gold in 4x100m relay, 4x400m relay and bronze in 400m at World Athletics Championships
*2019 Gold in 4x100m relay and Mixed Relay at World Athletics Championships
*2019 Gold in 100m and 4x100m relay at World Athletics Championships
American legend Allyson Felix will bring the curtain down on her 17-year long glittering Olympic career in Tokyo, ending an odyssey that began when she competed as a teenage prodigy at the 2004 Athens Games.
Felix’s fifth and final Olympics will almost certainly see her become the most decorated female track and field athlete in the history of the Games. She is currently tied with Jamaican legend Merlene Ottey with nine medals. The big difference is that Ottey never won an Olympic gold, while Felix has won a dazzling haul that includes six golds and three silvers.
One more medal in Tokyo will see her pull clear of Ottey on 10 medals. Felix made the US Olympic team in the women’s 400m, but she won’t be competing in the 200m event, in which she has won an Olympic gold and two silvers.
If she wins two or more another possibility given her likely place in the 4x400m women’s relay squad and the mixed gender 4x400m relay team she will overtake Carl Lewis as the most decorated American track athlete in history.
This will be Felix’s first Olympics as a mother. She didn’t qualify in the 200m after placing fifth at the trials. She ran a season-best 22.11, but the top three finishers qualified for Tokyo. Felix won a gold medal in the 200m at the 2012 London Olympics after finishing second in 2004 and 2008.
Her most successful Olympics to date were the 2012 Games in London, where she won three gold medals in the 200m and the 4x100m and 4x400m relays. In 2016, Felix and the US team defended both the relay golds and clinched silver in the women’s 400m after being edged at the line by way of a dive.
Felix won her first Olympic medal – a silver in the 200m race at the 2004 Athens Olympics – at the age of 18. A year later, she became the youngest gold medal winning sprinter in the 200m at the World Championships in Helsinki. She then successfully defended her title at Osaka two years later.
Booking her place on the Tokyo team was made sweeter by the fact that daughter Camryn was on hand to greet her at the finish line. Felix says motherhood has been a driving force as she seeks to make the most of the final years of her career.
Watch out for Allyson Felix as she eyes history at the Tokyo Olympics. She could well be leaving Tokyo as the most decorated Olympican in women’s track and field history.