Allyson Felix, who grew up in the Santa Clarita Valley, closed out her Olympic career Saturday by winning her 11th Olympic medal making her the most decorated U.S. Olympic track and field athlete of all time passing Carl Lewis.
Felix won the gold medal in the women’s 4×400-meter relay – her last race at the Tokyo Olympics. Her relay team clocked in at 3:16.85, and Felix, who was the team’s second runner, completed her lap around the track in 49.58 seconds.
This gold medal marks Felix’s first in Tokyo and seventh career Olympic gold medal.
Felix won her 10th medal – a bronze medal in the women’s 400-meter final of the Tokyo Olympics – on Friday, tying the Olympic medal record held by Carl Lewis and becoming the most decorated female track athlete in the history of the Games.
“This one is extra special. This medal means so much,” Felix, 35, told NBC after winning her 10th medal. “I knew that I still wanted to go and I had more to give, even though I was told that was it for me…For my last (individual) run, I just wanted to go with it and give myself a shot.”
According to Tim Layden, at-large sportswriter for NBC, Felix’s 49.46 was the fastest she had run the 400 meters since 2015 — three years before she gave birth to her daughter Camryn.
Felix, who grew up in the Santa Clarita Valley and attended L.A. Baptist High School, won her first Olympic medal at the Athens Olympics in 2004, when she was still a teenager.
The congratulations poured in for Felix across social media.
“Congratulations @allysonfelix,” read a tweet from Lewis, the U.S. track legend whose record Felix tied. “Thirty-five never looked so good. What an amazing career and inspiration.”