Queer US sprinter Sha’Carri Richardson is headed to the Tokyo Olympics, after winning the 100-metre women’s sprint event at the track and field trials in Oregon.
The 21-year-old crossed the finish line in Oregon on Saturday (19 June) in just 10.86 seconds, before running off into the stands to embrace her grandmother.
She told USA Today: “My grandmother is my heart. My grandmother is my superwoman.
“Honestly, that was one of my biggest goals in life – to have her see me compete in one of the highest levels, and be successful.”
But her family wasn’t her only support, and Richardson also thanked her girlfriend for advising her on her incredible bright orange hair colour at the trials.
The sprinter, known for her long nails and ever-changing hair, said: “My girlfriend actually picked my color.
“She said it, like, spoke to her, the fact that it was just so loud and vibrant, and that’s who I am.”
Following the race in Oregon, Richardson also took to Twitter and posted a simple rainbow emoji.
The sprinter also revealed in a post-race interview with NBC, that just last week, her birth mother had passed away.
She added later at a news conference: “That’s not anything I want to talk about, so I’m not going to get too much into details… But what I will say is I am grateful for her giving me life, bringing me into this world.”
Sha’Carri Richardson has mentioned that she is queer on social media.
Although many took Sha’Carri Richardson thanking her girlfriend as her coming out, she has mentioned being queer on multiple occasions on social media.
Some Twitter users pointed out that she had discussed Pride and her girlfriend on TikTok and Instagram, and in a 2015 Tweet she responded to the question “do y’all parents know y’all be gay?”, writing: “My family know I’m bi.”
Watch: Carl Nassib is first active NFL player to come out as gay