After all the controversy surrounding her making it into the 100-meter dash, Allyson Felix can put all that aside and say that she is an Olympic medalist, thanks to her performance in the 200-meter finals Aug. 8.
With a truly impressive performance, Felix smoothly took home gold (via The New York Times' Christopher Clarey):
This is the third consecutive Olympics in which Felix has medaled in this event. Her previous two wins were silver medals in 2004 and 2008. At those Games, Felix finished behind Jamaica's Veronica Campbell-Brown.
Felix has been steadily improving her performance in this race. Her first-round time of 22.71 seconds was good enough to get her into the semifinals, which is really all she had to worry about. No one is exerting all their energy in qualifying, but they do enough to make it to the next phase.
Building upon her success in the first round, Felix really kicked things into gear in the semifinals, finishing with a time of 22.31 seconds. She had the second-fastest time in that round, just .01 seconds behind fellow American Sanya Richards-Ross.
Leading up to the finals today, Felix was believed to be one of the favorites to win this race. She had a season-best time of 21.69 seconds in the 200, the best of anyone in the field. Granted, that doesn't always translate because, as mentioned before, you don't know if everyone is going all out prior to the Olympic finals.
With this performance in the 200-meter dash, Felix has made history as the first American woman to win three medals in this event.