Jasmine Camacho-Quinn just made history.
On Monday, August 2, the women’s 100-meter hurdles race served as a possibility of redemption for Camacho-Quinn, and she came out on top.
Jasmine won the gold medal this morning–only the second gold medal in Puerto Rican history–clocking in at 12.37 seconds. In the second and third place spots, American Keni Harrison claimed silver in 12.52 seconds and Jamaica’s Megan Tapper took home the bronze in 12.55.
“It really means a lot. This year I trained really hard; I don’t have a training partner, I’m by myself, so every time I stepped out there I gave it all I had,” Camacho-Quinn said about her big win. “This was what I wanted for this year, I wanted to be a gold medalist, and I manifested that. I spoke it into existence.”
Back in 2016, Camacho-Quinn was just a 19-year-old University of Kentucky student coming off an NCAA championship when she arrived at her first Olympics. Unfortunately, she took a tumble during her semifinal, with her trail leg clipping the top of the eighth of the 10 hurdles. She couldn’t regain her form before the ninth, which caused her to stumble and fall to the track.
With her father born in South Carolina and her mother born in Puerto Rico, Camacho-Quinn chose to represent her mother’s island. Though Puerto Ricans are U.S. citizens, the IOC recognizes it as its own country for the purposes of Olympic competition and laws. Tennis player Monica Puig won the island’s first gold medal in 2016.
When she was asked about how long that stumble from Rio stayed with her, Camacho-Quinn admitted it’s been pretty inescapable over the last five years.
“I’m constantly reminded; somebody’s always messaging me and like, ‘Oh I’m sorry for what happened’ and I’m like I need y’all to let that go, please,” she said, laughing. “I need y’all to let it go.”
She continued, “But yesterday before semis I kind of had a breakdown because I don’t want the same thing to happen again, but I knew how I’d been racing all season, just do that and I’ll be OK.”
And she did just that. Congratulations, Jasmine!