USA Athlete Quotes - Olympics, Day 3

USA Athlete Quotes - Olympics, Day 3

Provided by USATF

Evening Session

Men’s High Jump

Ricky Robertson

“It didn’t go as well as I wanted it to go. It was a fun experience. I needed 2.29 to make it to the final, I wasn’t able to clear it so unfortunately unable to clear it, so I didn’t make the final.”

On his overall Olympic experience…

“So far it’s been great. I love the experience. This is my first Olympics. Now that I know what to expect, hopefully in the next four years, I’ll be here again.”

Bradley Adkins

“It was exciting. I had a lot of fun. I was jumping great, my hip height was really good, my hips were moving. Unfortunately, my timing was just a little off over the top so I didn’t finish how I wanted to. I’m humbled and blessed to be out here and so thankful for this opportunity. Hopefully I represented as best as I could.

On length of time of competition…

“It was a fun atmosphere. To watch the 100, see the 400 [world record] get broken, it was a fun atmosphere. I really enjoyed it. I was hoping to finish a little better but that’s how it goes sometimes.”

On what he learned from the experience...

To stay hungry and keep working. That’s the plan. There’s a little hole ‘cause I wanted to compete a little better, but I’m just going to keep working, trust the process and trust God and the path he has for me.”

Erik Kynard

“I’m a little more experienced, a little more comfortable. I just know how to take care of business.”

Women’s 400 meters

Phyllis Francis (50.33, 1st)

“I just wanted to get out and run a good, fast start, then just hold my pace and hold my form and just tweak from there for the finals tomorrow.”

“I’ve been training really hard for this for four years. It’s all or nothing.”

Natasha Hastings (49.90, 2nd)

“I did well. To run a season’s best, one can never complain about that. To run a season’s best and feel as great as I did, I certainly can’t complain. I’m just excited to be in the final tomorrow night.”

Allyson Felix (49.67, 1st)

“I’m doing okay. It was good. I just wanted to put a solid effort forth and try to make a run at a good lane tomorrow.”

On working on second half of her race…

“A little more. I just wanted to bump up the intensity tonight.”

On how her ankle is feeling...

“It’s feeling good, holding up nicely. Not having any problems once I get out there.”

Women’s Triple Jump

Keturah Orji

"Yesterday, when I was going through prelims, my jumps weren't really good. Two of my jumps yesterday were fouls, so I was looking forward to today but I was also nervous about fouling those big jumps again. Once I got it out there, I was really happy. My coach said if I put it on the board, I'll put it out there. So I'm really excited. It's another fourth-place finish, but I can't complain."

Men’s 400 meters

LaShawn Merritt

“I got my medal, I’ll take it. I’ll get back and get my day of rest and get ready for the rounds of the 200.”

On the race...

“I thought the time was going to be fast. I didn’t think it was going to be 43.0 fast, but it is what it is. You take it, the race is over and you get ready for what’s next.”

On if he thought the race would be a WR...

“Not necessarily. You plan for the fastest time. The fastest time today was 43.0 which was a great race. I didn’t think it was be 43.0, but I mean it is what it is. He ran his heart out.”

On if this is this the greatest era of the 400...

”There was an era when guys were running 43-mid consistently. This is a great era. I’m happy and proud to be part of this 400m group.”

Men’s 100 meters

Justin Gatlin

“At the end of the day, being the oldest guy in the field and to say I’m going to be the oldest guy to ever get on top of a podium, it’s a victory in itself. I’m happy to be able to get out here and race against Usain. He rises to the occasion when needs and I’m glad to just be a part of history.”

On if he thought he had the win...

“I didn’t because I was tired going into the finals. I just thought, ‘let me focus on what I need to focus on.’ When I came across the line, I didn’t even know where I was. I didn’t know if De Grasse took the silver or even (if) Yohan Blake was out there in lane nine. I didn’t know anything, I had such tunnel vision.”

Why he was tired...

“It was such a short turnaround for me, from the semis to the final. Once we got back to the only to second call room, we only had 30 minutes to get back and get ready for the finals.”

On if he could’ve run faster…

“I guess so, I just came out and gave it all I had. I did what I needed to do to get into the final, to get on the podium. There are a lot of teammates who didn’t even make the team or make the final, so I’m happy to be here and happy to be able to represent my country.”

On if he’s disappointed...

“At the end of the day, it’s all about the elements. You can’t just go by what’s on paper; it’s about the moments. Right now, I was tired and I gave it all I could going into the finals.”

On Usain telling the BBC he was upset people were booing Justin...

“At the end of the day, I have the utmost respect for Usain. When it comes away from the track, he’s a great guy, he’s a cool guy. There is no rivalry between us. There’s no bad blood. I’m a competitor, he’s a competitor. He has pushed me to be the athlete I am today and I hope he can say the same for me. When it comes down to it, I guess I’ve given him his closest races in all (of) his career. To be able to say that at the age I am now, it’s a true honor.”

On the crowd booing...

“I haven’t really focused on the boos. When I looked in the stands I saw so many American flags, way more than I’ve ever seen at any championships. I’m so happy that so many Americans rally to come here and represent the United States, not just for me. There’s so many of my countrymen here, not just in track and field, but other sports, too. That’s what I really focused on.”

Trayvon Bromell

“It was a blessing, coming up as a little kid from St. Pete. It’s a blessing to be in the Olympics. I was just happy to be in the final.”

On how it felt to be in the final...

“It felt good. I was telling everybody else earlier today that my Achilles was bothering me. I was questioning myself about pulling myself out of the race. I prayed to God to give me the health to get through the race. This is my dream; I wanted to be in the Olympics.”

Marvin Bracy

“I didn’t go out and get the job done as I expected. I’m still holding my head high and I’m still confident in myself and I’ll definitely be back.”

Women’s 1500 meters

Brenda Martinez

“I was trying to stick my nose in it. I honestly don’t know what happened the last lap. I’m so disappointed. I felt confident enough that I could kick with these girls, but I honestly don’t know what happened the last lap.”

“I don’t think I hit the wall; I don’t know why I wasn’t responding. I don’t think it was so much mental, as maybe it was my body. I just didn’t have the legs to go like I normally do. I was feeling pretty light on my feet (earlier today); I tried to take it easy. I don’t know what happened.”

Jennifer Simpson

“I felt really good. I don’t always like to take the lead like that. To me, I was thinking about what about nervousness tips you over the edge. I decided today that what tips you over the edge is when nerves turn into worrying, when you’re worrying about things. I saw that the pace of the first heat was a little slow through halfway, so I thought I didn’t have to worry about the pace if I take it and nobody ever wants to take it. So, I thought if I do it then I have a little bit of control and I don’t have to worry about it. That was just my strategy today.”

Shannon Rowbury

“All I needed to get out of the semifinal today was a big ‘Q’, I mean even a little ‘q’ would have done. I wanted to qualify automatically. It was a lot messier than the first round, but I’m used to that in international competition and I knew that all that really mattered was that I closed well. I’m normally happy with my close, so I’m good going into the final.”

Morning Session

Women’s Marathon

Shalane Flanagan, (6th, 2:25:26)

“I tried to coach said at 30 km that it would be a big push to the finish. I tried to hang as tight as I could while also playing it smart knowing that they may blow each other up and I might be able to pick off some of the carnage that's going to come back to me. I just tried to keep my head up and stay positive the entire time. There were a few times where I started to feel pretty sorry for myself. I was pretty uncomfortable towards the end and I just said, 'put your head down and fight.' I'm happy I hung in as long as I could, but unfortunately, it just wasn't enough. If I had been able to push a little sooner, maybe I could have been part of the carnage a little closer and maybe I gave up too much ground. It was all I had. I gave all that I am.”

“They just threw in a big surge and the last 7 km, it was very technical. They threw in some good surges and I felt like I tried to cover those but I just did the math and told myself, 'be patient, be patient' and 'never give up' and around 35 km, it becomes twisty and turn-y and you just lose eyesight of where they are. Before you know it, the gaps open up. I felt really great at 35 km. The gear change is hard. Your legs fall asleep at that pace and that drop of gear change, I just knew I could go. Let's just say I had a lot more fun than I did in LA. Let's put it that way. You never give up in a race like this. You push for every second, every spot you can get and I felt like I did that as best I could. To have three Americans in the top 10, I told Desi as soon as she finished, 'I'm so proud of us. We came here ready to run hard.' and I feel like we did.”

Desi Linden, (7th, 2:26:08)

“I thought I ran really well. I wanted to run my own race and I felt like at times, it was happening around me. Surges and moves but I wanted to have another gear over that last 10 or 12 km. I think I might have been a little aggressive over that last 10 km loop going towards the far end, I got excited. I could see myself closing in and I just kind of got stuck in one pace coming back the rest of the way. I was completed gapped and I couldn't make any moves. It's the marathon; you know it's going to happen over the last 7 km. You say, 'someone will come back, someone will come back.' that you can pass and I got one person. I put everything out there. I'm not upset at all. I wish I could've been a bit better, could've been closer. We went all in and it's as good as I am. And that's the whole point. You come here to find out. It was good for me.”

“I was ready for the (heat). I was prepared. After LA, I was like, I don't want to think about this for a long time. I don't feel too bad. I couldn't have that turnover on the late parts. Heat wasn't a big deal.”

Amy Cragg, (9th, 2:28:25)

"The marathon is the trickiest of all the events. To get it perfect, you have to take every one of those races and just be grateful for it because if one thing goes wrong, it's not just a little bit of a disaster. It can be a 26-mile disaster. I'm still so grateful I Got the opportunity to race in LA and race here. It was a beautiful marathon. I'm really happy and it means a lot to be that I was able to represent the U.S. I wish I could've done better, but this is it. This is has been my goal for the last four years, to get here and try to perform at my best. Today, it just wasn't quite there, but I'm not done. I'm not going to give up yet. We trained really, really hard for this for a long time."

"We were prepared for months for it to be hot. Our coach [Jerry Schumacher] did a great job preparing us for every type of weather, every type of race. I truly believe we were the most prepared out of anyone in the race. I'm in the best shape of my life and it just didn't go as well as I was hoping, but that's okay."