Sha'Carri Richardson Clinches Spot in Summer Olympics After Tripping Over Her Untied Shoelace in Opening Trials Race

Richardson was previously named the world's fastest woman after winning the 100-meter dash at the World Athletics Championships last year

<p>Getty</p> Sha


Sha'Carri Richardson and her untied shoelace

Sha'Carri Richardson is headed to the 2024 Summer Olympics — and even a near accident on the track couldn't stop her!

During the 2024 U.S. Olympic Track and Field Team Trials on Saturday, June 22, the sprinter crossed the line first in the women's 100m race with a time of 10.71 seconds, giving her the record for the world's fastest time for the year and securing her spot at the Paris Olympics this summer.

Her Olympic-qualifying finish at the trials on Saturday night came after she captured headlines on Friday for finishing in the No. 1 spot of the women's 100-meter dash on day one of the trials in Eugene, Oregon — despite tripping over her untied shoelace.

A video of Friday night's race at Hayward Field shows Richardson stumbling over her laces just as she came out of the blocks, but she quickly recovered and overtook all five of her competitors. She won the heat in 10.88 seconds — the fastest time of the runners in all four heats of the 100-meter dash on Saturday, according to NBC Sports — and secured a spot in the semifinals.

Related: Sha’Carri Richardson, Jordan Chiles and Kristie Mewis on 'Trying to Take Over' the Sports World as Female Athletes (Exclusive)

"I definitely didn't have the start I've been training to have in this moment," Richardson told NBC in a post-race interview on Friday. "But I'm still not panicking. I'm staying patient and knowing no matter what's going on, to continue to run my race."

When asked what it means to her that she won her heat and took home the best time of the evening despite her trip, she said: "That tells me I’m prepared."

"I just need to put it all together," she told the outlet.

In June 2021, the Louisiana State University alum made headlines after she qualified for the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics. At the last U.S. Olympic track and field trials, she clocked a time of 10.86 seconds for the 100-meter dash, securing her a spot on Team USA at just 21 years old.

However, she was suspended from the team for one month after testing positive for THC, a chemical in marijuana, and missed the entire Olympic games.

Despite the setback, in 2023, Richardson was named the world’s fastest woman after she ran the final 100-meter race in 10.65 seconds at the World Athletics Championships in Budapest, Hungary, setting a new record at the prestigious competition.

<p>Getty</p> Sha'Carri Richardson at the 2024 U.S. Olympic Team Track & Field Trials on June 21, 2024


Sha'Carri Richardson at the 2024 U.S. Olympic Team Track & Field Trials on June 21, 2024

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"I'm not back, I'm better," Richardson said in an April interview with PEOPLE, recalling what she famously said after winning the world championship. "That slogan comes from knowing that I've been in the world. I've been in the world in a way that not necessarily is the way a lot of people could handle or really bounce back or survive."

"And the fact that I'm able to stand here and be the athlete I've been, I've been the woman I've been," Richardson added, reflecting on her journey since being suspended. "I'm wiser. I'm calmer, I'm disciplined and I'm more focused on the responsibility that I have as well as my passion for what I do."

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