Watch the video highlights of Allyson Felix finishing in the top three of the women’s 400m finals at the 2021 U.S. Olympic track and field trials to punch her ticket to a fifth Olympic Games on Sunday night. Felix has already made four appearances at the Olympics and she was determined to make it No. 5 this past weekend.
In a highly contested race at the historic Hayward Field, Felix powered her way down the home stretch to clock a season’s best of 50.02 seconds to finish second behind Quanera Hayes, who ran a seasonal best of 49.78s to win her second-ever national title.
Wadeline Jonathas, the 2019 World Championships fourth-place finisher from Doha, Qatar, held on for third place with her fastest time of the year at 50.03.
Coming off the final bend, Felix found herself in fourth or fifth place but the 35-year-old said she used her past experience as the motivating factor to overtake Lynna Irby, Kendall Ellis, and Jonathas to seal her place to the Tokyo Olympic Games, which is slated for later this summer.
“Honestly, I just told myself before the race, when it comes down to it, I’ve got to fight. That’s been a theme of mine the past couple of years,” Felix revealed.
“I just really wanted to show (my daughter) that, no matter what, you do things with character, integrity and you never give up. Having her as motivation these past two years has given me a whole new drive.”
Felix made previous appearances at the 2004, 2008, 2012, and 2016 Olympics, but she is heading to a Games for the first time as a mom, following the birth of her daughter Camryn, who was born in 2018.
One of the most colorful sights was to see Camryn, or Cammy as Felix calls her, joining her mom on the track, along with Hayes and her son Demetrius, after the two mothers qualified for Tokyo.
“I just told her that I was grateful for all she’s done for mothers,” Hayes said about what she shared with Felix. “How she fought for us and paved the way for me as an athlete. I just thanked her for being her and never giving up and was paying homage to her..
“I’ve looked up to Allyson for a long time, and to be there and go through this with her as a mom was special,” the first-time Olympian added about Felix, the six-time Olympic gold medal winner.
“This moment is so unreal right now,” Hayes said after her victory. “I’m actually in disbelief.”
Meanwhile, Ellis ran a season’s best of 50.10s for fourth place with Kaylin Whitney clocking a personal best of 50.29 for fifth and Irby rounding out the 4x400m relay pool with a sixth-place finish with 50.79s.