Shaunae Miller-Uibo of the Bahamas said she will not attempt to become the first woman to win three consecutive Olympic titles in an individual running event.
Miller-Uibo, the two-time reigning Olympic 400m gold medalist, plans to drop the 400m and focus on the 200m between now and the 2024 Paris Games.
“I don’t think I’ll be doing the 400m that year ,” Miller-Uibo said in a Wednesday press conference ahead of Thursday’s Diamond League meet in Rome, where she will run the 200m, live on Peacock. “I’m planning on wrapping it up. I’ve accomplished so much in the event, For me, it’s just about getting the world title now.”
Anita Włodarczyk, a hammer thrower from Poland, is the only woman to win three Olympic gold medals in one individual track and field event. Włodarczyk did so in London, Rio and Tokyo.
Usain Bolt is the only man to win three Olympic golds in an individual running event.
Miller-Uibo, a two-time world silver medalist in the 400m, said that in addition to a world championships gold in the event, she is motivated to break 48 seconds (which two women have done) and to chase the world record, which is 47.60 set by East German Marita Koch in 1985. Koch’s record is dubious given the prevalence of performance-enhancing drugs among East Germans in that era.
Miller-Uibo, 28, is the seventh-fastest woman in history with a personal best of 48.36 seconds.
She has plenty of experience in the 200m, making her world championships debut in that event in 2013 and placing fourth. She earned 200m bronze at the 2017 Worlds, was the world’s fastest woman in the event in 2019 and petitioned for a Tokyo Olympic schedule change to make a 200m-400m double easier. The petition was unsuccessful.
She did both races anyway, finishing last in the 200m final, 1.7 seconds behind the penultimate finisher on the same day of the 400m first round.
Miller-Uibo called the 400m her favorite event and the 200m her “original sweetheart.”
With Miller-Uibo passing on the 400m in Paris, the path is cleared for Jamaican Elaine Thompson-Herah to bid for the first three-peat in Olympic women’s individual track events. She won the 100m and 200m at the last two Games.
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