Sanya Richards-Ross adds Olympic gold to her collection
August 6, 2012St. Thomas Aquinas High School
With an American flag draped around her shoulders and a huge smile, Sanya Richards-Rosscelebrated winning the individual Olympic gold medal she has coveted since 2004.
Richards-Ross, who graduated from St. Thomas Aquinas High, crossed the finish line unaware that she had edged out Great Britain's Christine Ohuruogo and U.S. teammate DeeDee Trotter to win the gold in the 400 meters.
So when the results were posted inside London's Olympic Stadium and she saw that her time of 49.55 was .15 faster than the other runners, her arms flew out to her sides in victory of the individual title that eluded her twice before.
"I just kept saying, 'You can do this, you can do this,' '' Richards-Ross, 27, told The Associated Press. "I just dug really deep and I'm very happy."
She has a chance to add two more medals before the conclusion of the 2012 Olympics, as she will be competing in both the 200 meters and the 4 x 400-meter relay beginning on Monday.
But none will be sweeter than the 400 meters gold that she narrowly missed in Beijing. It's the one she's been chasing for four years, the capstone to her prolific Olympic career, which includes two gold medals in relays and a bronze in the 400.
"It was really exciting," said Maureen Anderson, of Miramar, Richards-Ross' aunt, who was in the Olympic Stadium in London and spoke to the Sun Sentinel by phone. "It's a feeling that I don't think I've soaked it in yet enough to describe. It was just the most amazing thing."
Aaron Ross, her husband, who took a break from training camp with the Jacksonville Jaguars to be in London to watch his wife compete, told the Associated Press: "She worked so hard. All the emotions going through her mind, my mind, her family's mind, everybody that's seen the struggles. It just a great moment right now.”