Sha’Carri Richardson the favourite at Eugene after incredible Diamond League sprint

After endless heartbreak over the past two years Sha’Carri Richardson returns to Eugene a new runner

Amy Tennery
Monday 03 July 2023 18:03 BST
(Getty Images)

Fan-favourite Sha’Carri Richardson rolls into the U.S. National Championships this week as the fastest woman in America, in seemingly prime condition and hungry for revenge after previous trips to Eugene, Oregon, ended in disappointment.

The 23-year-old dynamo from Dallas was anointed the queen of American track when she punched her ticket to Tokyo in the 100 metres two years ago at “Tracktown, USA,” but stayed at home after a positive cannabis test ended her Olympic quest. This decision sparked significant debate within the sports community regarding the ongoing punishment for cannabis, especially considering that many American states have now legalised the substance.

A year later, she stunningly failed to qualify for the World Championships at Hayward Field but resolved to keep up her dream of a major title.

That goal appears tantalisingly within reach as she returns to Eugene with the second-fastest time in the world this year, a scorching 10.76 to win at the Doha Diamond League.

The performance, four hundredths of a second off her personal best, saw her finish ahead of serious contenders including Jamaican Shericka Jackson and the 2019 world champion in the 200m, Briton Dina Asher-Smith.

"I’m so blessed and thankful, I feel at peace. All I do is the best I do and I’m excited to do it," Richardson told reporters in Doha.

Just a hundredth of a second off Ivorian world leader Marie-Josee Ta Lou, few in the United States have come anywhere close to matching Richardson this year.

Her closest rival, Aleia Hobbs, ran 10.86 in Baton Rouge earlier this season and won the NYC Grand Prix in 10.98 at the end of June.

"I just have to stay consistent and do it when it counts," Hobbs said in New York. "I have been consistently around 10.8-10.9, so I know it’s going to drop when it counts. I just need be patient and wait on it."


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