Allyson Felix Passes Carl Lewis as Most Decorated American in Olympic Track History

Allyson Felix passed Carl Lewis to become the most decorated American track and field athlete of all time.

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Allyson Felix cemented her place as the greatest American track and field athlete of all time Saturday morning.

The 35-year-old track star won her 11th Olympic medal on Saturday morning, surpassing the American record of 10 medals in track and field set by Carl Lewis in 1996. Only Paavo Nurmi of Finland, who won 12 medals during his career as a long-distance runner, holds more.

Felix, Sydney McLaughlin, Dalilah Muhammad and Athing Mu won the gold medal, giving Felix the last medal of her storied track and field career that spanned 17 years and five Olympic Games.

The U.S. women’s 4x400m relay team of Kendall Ellis, Lyann Irby, Wadeline Jonathas, and Kaylin Whitney won the qualifying heat in 3.20.86 on Thursday.  The U.S. subbed all four runners for the final, putting together an all-star team of runners, each of whom had already won individual medals in Tokyo.

On Friday in the 400m race, Felix earned her 10th medal in her fifth and final Olympics, coming from behind to claim bronze After the race, she delivered a message to her young daughter over a video call.

“No matter what it feels is stacked against you, you go out with character and integrity, you give your all, and that’s all anybody else can ask of you, and you’re proud with that,” Felix said.

There might never be another U.S. track and field athlete like Felix, but her indelible impact will continue to inspire a new wave of women to rise and dominate the sport as she has since 2004.

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