TOKYO — Earlier than Athing Mu launched herself to the world on the Tokyo Video games, the public-address announcer at Olympic Stadium butchered her identify.
It was Friday, earlier than her opening spherical warmth of the ladies’s 800 meters, and Mu didn’t conceal her dismay.
“I’m certain everybody noticed my face,” stated Mu, a 19-year-old American whose identify is pronounced “Ah-THING Moe.”
“I don’t even know what he stated, but it surely was horrible. Like, the place do you even get that from?”
Mu stated all this with an enthralling, disarming smile — she was used to individuals getting her identify mistaken, she stated, but it surely additionally appeared clear that she wished some respect. So she went out and made certain to earn it as an Olympic gold medalist.
On Tuesday, Mu turned the primary American to win gold in her occasion since 1968, the newest and best milestone for one of many sport’s rising stars.
Mu, who’s from Trenton, N.J., completed in 1 minute 55.21 seconds, her private greatest and an American file. Her technique from the beginning was clear: go to the entrance and keep there. Her commanding tempo turned the race right into a coronation.
Keely Hodgkinson of Britain was second, and Raevyn Rogers, Mu’s American teammate, completed third for the bronze.
Mu arrived in Tokyo a number of weeks after she accomplished a historic freshman yr at Texas A&M, the place she broke a bunch of collegiate data and received the N.C.A.A. title within the 400. On the finish of June, she introduced she was going professional and signed with Nike.
She proceeded to dominate the 800 meters on the U.S. trials, profitable a spot in Tokyo by operating the quickest time on this planet this yr. The quickest time, that’s, till immediately.