Meet Sha'Carri Richardson.

By Sam Reed
Jun 21, 2021 @ 1:16 pm
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Sha'Carri Richardson
Sha'Carri Richardson
| Credit: Patrick Smith/Getty Images

Sha'Carri Richardson is going to be your next Olympic crush. And the best part is, she knows it. 

Over the weekend, Richardson not only qualified for the upcoming Tokyo games in the 100 meter race, she became America's fastest woman in the process. In Saturday's semifinals, she crossed the finish line so far ahead of her competitors that she had time to point an impeccably manicured finger at the clock 30 meters before she crossed the finish line. Per trends experts, faux-humble is out. In 2021 we're owning our greatness and saving our best lashes for the track. 

"I just want the world to know that I'm that girl," the Dallas native told NBC's Lewis Johnson in a post-race interview after a victory jog filled with joyful expletives and kisses blown to the crowd. Take notes, people. There will be a quiz and the only right answer is Sha'Carri Richardson.

See, the internet gets it: 

In addition to her manicure, jewelry, and makeup, you may have noticed Richardson's flame-orange hair, which she styled in a mini pony at the crown of her head a la another style icon, the Proud Family's Dijonay Jones. NBC reported that this was an intentional marker - an easy way to spot the 21-year-old from an aerial view among the lineup of other Olympic hopefuls. It's also a reference to the fact that this girl is literally on fire. Though, it's not like Richardson needs any kind of distinguishing signature. Just look for the fastest sprinter on the track, the woman who pulls away in the final 50 meters - that's her.

The center of the Venn diagram of people who care deeply about the next Telfar Bag Security event and international sporting competitions may be small, but we're not to be underestimated. We tune in to the women's World Cup to see the color of Megan Rapinoe's hair; we watch the summer Olympics in anticipation of the number of rhinestones on Simone Biles' leotard; we're fascinated by the drama of the Shibutani siblings' ice skating costumes during the Winter Games. I don't have the word count to start on Serena Williams. The point is, we home in on the most stylish athletes America has to offer and we root for them to add the final finishing touch to their look: an Olympic medal. And Richardson has just joined this elite tier of athletes who put the "OH" in Olympics. 

Sha'Carri Richardson
Sha'Carri Richardson
| Credit: Patrick Smith/Getty Images

Following Sunday's finals, where she breezed to the no. 1 spot for the second time, the former LSU athlete and collegiate record holder jogged up the stands to find her grandmother, falling into a big, weepy hug. She later said in an interview that just last week she learned her biological mother had passed away. "Y'all see me on this track and y'all see this poker face I put on, but nobody but [my family] and my coach know what I go through on a day-to-day basis," she said. "Without my grandmother, there would be no Sha'Carri Richardson. My family is my everything."

America, meet your new queen.