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Sha’Carri Richardson Wins Gold in Women's 100m at World Athletics Championships

Sports News | News & Opinion

(Source: Christian Petersen/Getty Images for World Athletics)

This week, Dallas, TX native Sha’Carri Richardson took home the gold medal for the women’s 100 meter finals with her debut at the 2023 World Athletics Championship in Budapest, Hungary with an astounding 10.65 seconds.


Richardson is the first U.S. winner of the women’s 100 meter since Tori Bowie who won the title back in 2017. Sadly, Bowie passed away this year at the early age of 32 due to complications from childbirth.

The legendary feat marks a historical moment for Richardson’s career also having won over top competitors such as Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, one of the most decorated sprinters in World Championship history, and Shericka Jackson, the fastest women’s 200m runner alive. Richardson’s time surpassed Fraser Pryce’s 2022 championship record of 10.67 seconds and Jackson’s 2023 best.


Many may remember Sha'Carri Richardson for her orange, vibrant hair after making her public mark at the Olympic Trials in 2021. After already coming out as bisexual years ago in 2015, Richardson publicly thanked her girlfriend for choosing her memorable orange hair for the race, which won the hearts of the public.

(Source: Associated Press)

The World Athletic Championships is a biennial athletics competition organized by World Athletics, and one of the most prestigious sports events in the world on par with the Olympic Games. These competitions bring together the world’s elite track and field athletes for the opportunity to compete for their respective nation on an international stage.


This win is not only monumental but changes the narrative of Richardson’s past history. Two years ago, soon after her iconic Olympic trials win, Richardson was temporarily suspended by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) for testing positive for cannabis use. Despite Richardson acknowledging she relied on cannabis to deal with her mother’s passing and the fact that it is proven to not enhance athletic performance, the ruling was still upheld.

(Source: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

Unfortunately, the suspension voided her U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials results which led to her non selection by Team USA to compete in the 100 meters and relay races in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. As a result, she faced controversy both within the sports industry and the public eye. The ruling also sparked disagreements over including marijuana in the list of banned substances in the first place.


Furthermore, the subject of racial discrimination against Sha’Carri Richardson was injected into the situation after a similar incident occurred with Russian figure skater Kamila Valieva, who was allowed to compete.


Richardson called out the decision of the International Olympic Committee which allowed Valieva to participate in the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics despite testing positive for the heart medicine trimetazidine, which is on the World Anti-Doping Agency’s list of prohibited substances.

(Source: Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

From these events, Richardson further embraces her Blackness and is fairly public with her social media platforms to redefine the narrative towards Black, female athletes.


“When I’m off the track, I experience things like…any other woman, any other Black person would experience. So, to me, not to acknowledge that would be part of the problem…The fact that I say that I’m Black before an athlete, I really stand on that.” - Sha’Carri Richardson


Even through a brief dip in her career and public image, Sha’Carri Richardson continued to focus and improve by centering herself personally, professionally, and emotionally.

(Source: Aleksandra Szmigiel/Reuters)

When asked about the differences that allowed her to achieve the World Title compared to her performance last year, Richardson responded,


“…I’ve been whole with myself…I’ve been able to stay in my faith, stay grounded…knowing to keep…who genuinely cares for me…and staying dedicated and focused…blocking out the noise, blocking out media, and just continuing to move forward.”


Some may say this historic win is a testament to a new beginning in her career, but to Sha’Carri Richardson, achieving greatness was all part of the plan.


“I’m here. I’m the champion.” “I told y’all. I’m not back, I’m better”. - Sha’Carri Richardson

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