Athing Mu Becomes First American to Win Olympic Gold in Women's 800 Meters Final Since 1968

Athing Mu
Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images

First-time Olympian Athing Mu won gold for Team USA in Tuesday's women's 800-meter final and made history in the process. With a national-record time of 1:55:21, Mu culminated her growing legend, becoming the first American woman to win the event since 1968 at the Mexico City Games.

Mu, 19, came into these Games as the gold-medal favorite and fittingly soared past the competition in her first two heats, winning with times of 2:01.10 and 1:58.07 in Round 1 and the semifinal, respectively.

Fellow American and first-time Olympian Raevyn Rogers earned bronze with a personal-best 1:56:81, just behind Keely Hodgkinson, who took silver with Britain's national-record time of 1:55:88. 

Hype surrounded Mu's Olympic run long before she took the track in Tokyo, as she shattered six collegiate records and a world record this past season as a freshman at Texas A&M. Mu, who turned pro ahead of the Olympic trials, also finished first in the 400- and 800-meter races in both the 2018 New Balance Indoor Nationals and Outdoor Nationals. 

Prior to earning bronze in this 800-meter final, the 24-year-old Rogers earned a second-place finish in the 2019 World Athletics Championships. Rogers also finished first in that event's 4x400-meter race.  

This story was originally published by CBS Sports on Aug. 3, 2021. 


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