USA Athlete Quotes - Olympics, Day 8

USA Athlete Quotes - Olympics, Day 8

Provided by USATF

Athlete Quotes - Olympics, Day 8


Women’s 4x100m relay (41.01, gold)

Tianna Bartoletta

“It was a team effort. It’s fun to be able to share that story, that crazy story, with these other ladies.”

On running the first leg...

Lane 1 is not exactly an easy lane to run in. For me, it was definitely all business. I had a big job to set the tone for the rest of the relay. To run in lane 1 the way we did, it was a serious matter. We had fun but it was a serious ordeal.

Allyson Felix

“It was just special. I felt we were really strong tonight. The adversity yesterday made us even more determined. We just kept fighting the whole way through.”

“I think yesterday proved that you never know what you’re going to get. Sometimes adversity makes you stronger. We each have had a rocky road here, kind of a different journey, a unique experience. We just came together, just wanted to keep going.”

English Gardner

"We got out there, everybody did their jobs, everybody executed the way they were supposed to. We were patient, we trusted each other and we came out with a W... That simple. I mean, it was nothing else more than that. Even with the whole debacle and the whole prelim we executed just fine, we just had a foreign object in our lane."

On her mindset going into the race...

"I had full confidence in Tori Bowie and I knew she was going to be able to get the job done and finish the race. I remember telling her, 'Don't worry, I'm gonna clean up anything that's left on the third leg and you'll just have a smooth ride home. All you gotta do is hit gear 5 and go straight down."

On running in lane 1...

"I didn't really concern me. A lane is a lane for me. I've never been the type that got hung up on what lane we were in or not in. We knew that we had a tough job ahead of us so our job was to get out there and just work - nothing more than we'd already done. Just work at what we're already doing, execute, get the handoffs right, run our butts off, run our legs, get a person and make sure that we get the first place when we cross the line."

Tori Bowie

“This gold medal means the world to me. This is one of the moments I'll never forget. This is my first gold medal at the Olympics and I feel like my teammates made this moment extremely easy for me. Everyone is so talented and motivated, so my job was easy.”

On the re-run yesterday...

"It was way more motivation and I don't think it affected me at all. I stayed positive throughout the entire situation.

On running from lane one...

"We have heart, to be in lane one and neither one of us ever doubted each other. I knew everyone was going to do an amazing job, and was going to do their job. I knew if all four ladies did their job, I knew we'd come out with a gold medal."

On if she watched the women's 4x100m from London...

"Of course I watched that race and I've watched that race throughout the years. Carmelita Jeter was amazing and I was here tonight having to fill that role. It's an honor to me."

On running the anchor leg...

"I was determined. I know how competitive Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce is and I was determined to not let her catch me. My teammates did a wonderful job on the first three legs and I didn't want to be a disappointment to them."

On if they felt they had to beat the Jamaicans after they swept 100-200 gold

"I think it was important. They're amazing sprinters and well-known for the sprints. But I knew we had to take tonight. Such an amazing moment."

Men’s 4x100 Meters Relay, final

Mike Rodgers

“When we stepped back and had a replay. We put the stick out there and we both had a stick in our hand. I didn’t ever let go of the stick until I was inside a zone because I knew we had to be inside zone for him to have possession of the stick.”

Justin Gatlin

On the handoff...

“For me it felt good. I wasn’t necessarily looking where the exchange was in the exchange zone. I was doing the proper steps getting out. Looking back at the tape, it looked like it was a great energy flow. He came in, handed the stick off, I felt like he didn’t bunch up on me. I ran out the zone and had to do what I had to do.”

Tyson Gay

“From the replay, it looked like he put his hand back before he got into the zone, but it looked like he took the stick once he was in the zone. I’m hoping we can appeal of some kind, but I understand that it’s resulted in a disqualification, I’m hoping we can appeal it.”

Trayvon Bromell  

On running with an Achilles injury...

"I'm good. When I get back I'm going to get this surgery and hopefully show everybody what I can do."

On his injury leading up to the race...

"Before the semis, [my foot] locked up on me and I wasn't able to walk. Then the doctors ended up adjusting everything, getting me able to get more motion in it. I just prayed to God and I was like, if you just get me through the race, that's all I care about. I'm just a kid that had a dream of wanting to be in the Olympics and I didn't want to end it before the semis. I just wanted to make it through the finals and make my dream come true."

Women’s Pole Vault

Sandi Morris (4.85m, silver)

“It was a whirlwind. I have dreamed about this day since I was a little girl. To make it to the Olympics in the first place is just a huge feat. You have to jump through so many hoops to get here. Prelims, finals at the Olympic Trials; prelims, finals here. It’s a very, very long journey just to make it to this spot. To come away with a silver medal, my goal tonight was to get any medal and I would be happy with any medal. It’s my first Olympic games, I’m 24 years old, to be healthy and out there jumping high, it’s such an honor.

On her misses in competition: “I was missing things because I was blowing through, meaning I needed to go up poles to a stiffer pole. It wasn’t because I was jumping poorly. It was because I was jumping on the wrong pole, at the wrong time. That’s what the pole vault’s about. There are so many little elements that play into it.

“It’s really bittersweet. I love the fact that I got a silver medal, I’m so happy about it. I almost with that last attempt at 4.90 wasn’t so close. For a split second in the air I thought I was a gold medalist.

“Katarina Stefanini, I have so much respect for that girl. She’s older than I am, more of a veteran. I have so much respect for her and I’m so happy for her as a gold medalist.”

On recovering from a wrist injury: “When I fractured my wrist in May I wasn’t sure I was going to make it through the Olympic Trials. I did everything I could to get healthy and get strong, and when I made it through the Olympic Trials, that was a feat in its own, making the Olympic Team. To come out as a silver medalist, after all of that, what an accomplishment, and I’m so proud.”

Jenn Suhr (4.60, 7th)

“I can’t even address the pole vault right now. This [illness] is going on day 10 and I feel worse today. It felt better yesterday. It’s just all over. Dizziness, it’s always in the chest, can’t breathe. I threw up twice out there. It’s getting ridiculous. I don’t know what it is, but I’m getting nervous. I just want to get out of here, go home and figure it out. After warmups I thought, OK, I’m on. I had the bungee at 4.90 and I made it huge, and I was like, I’m on. Then after warmups, everything just shut down. My muscles, I’ve never had them shake and just give out like they have been. I kept moving my mark up, because I couldn’t make it to the box. It is such a crappy feeling to know that you’ve worked four years for this, for this to happen. It’s embarrassing, too. I feel bad that I couldn’t do it for everyone back home.”

Women’s 4x400 Relay, first round (3:21.42, 1st)

Courtney Okolo

“We have that determination, we just don’t want to give up, we’re USA.  My other three teammates set the race up well for me and all I had to do was maintain the lead. I couldn’t be more proud of them.

On what kind of time they’re looking for in the final: We haven’t really talked about that. We just kind of run our hearts out and whatever time we get it whatever we get.

Taylor Ellis Watson

“We just have so much confidence in our fitness, we’ve been practicing together to see what each other can do, we can put any of us out there tomorrow.”

Francena McCorory

“Our goal was to come out and get a good lead for Phyllis because she was on anchor so we wanted to make it back into the final comfortably, so we did. I’m proud of all of us today.”

On worrying about exchanges: “For the 4x4 it’s not a blind exchange, we’re looking directly at it. We don’t have the same problems kind of problems, but we always take precaution with the baton, make sure you keep your eye on it, treat it like a baby.”

Phyllis Francis

“We are defending champions of course, so we’re looking to get a gold medal.The WR is pretty tough, I think last Olympics was 3:16 so we were about a second off. That would be nice. We’re just going to get out there, have fun, and do our best.”

Men’s 4x400 Relay, first round (2:58.38, 2nd)

David Verberg

“We made it back to the final, that was our goal. It was to execute, make it to the final and we did that. We had one of the fastest, second fastest time so we’ll be in the middle of the track. We’re bringing in two fresh legs again tomorrow, all four guys here executed well from first to last. Our goal was to make it through safely, get the stick around and we did that.”

Women’s 5000 (15:08.59, 11th)

Shelby Houlihan

“Ultimately I wanted to medal, but I know that was a really high goal. I still was setting that goal for myself. I wanted to be top eight, but I didn’t. It went out conservatively, which I felt really good about. Then, the gear changed and I tried to stay with that second pack. Once they started cutting it down the last mile, I was just trying to hang on. Then they pulled away from me a little bit and I was struggling a bit. I felt like I had good positioning. I was kinda right where my coach told me to be, just trying to stay as close as I could on the rail, just zone out and stay calm.”