Sha’Carri Richardson switched it up for her latest race, ditching the flowing braids for a natural fro, and fans are loving it.
Richardson has made a case for being one of the most electrifying track athletes of the current era. Every one of her races is must-see, and that is not just due to her being tied for the fifth-fastest woman ever.
The Dallas, Texas, native is known for rocking long braided hairstyles and colored wigs along with intricate fingernails as she blasts past her competition.
But this time, she went for a change of pace after shedding the bright orange wig that she wore on the way to gaining notoriety and abandoning the multicolored braids she wore during her comeback earlier this year.
Richardson came into the 2023 Diamond League finale sporting her naturally curly hair.
The track sensation walked out of the Heyward Field tunnel in Eugene, Oregon, looking as happy as can be. The 23-year-old smiled, waved, and blew kisses to the crowd before getting set in the blocks for the race.
In the end, the actual race did not go Richardson’s way. She ended up in fourth place as she was edged out by Jamaica’s Shericka Jackson, Elaine Thompson-Herah, and Côte d’Ivoire’s Marie-Josée Ta Lou. Even though she did not place on the podium, Richardson was far from disappointed after the end of her stellar year.
Richardson said after the race that she was not mad about what happened, telling reporters “Today was amazing, a great end to the season. It just gives me stuff to work on, prepare for the Olympics next year.”
She also gave a reason behind the hair switch-up, explaining that it was a bet between her and her coach.
“Honestly, I would say my coach, I told him that if I go 10.6 [seconds] I’ll wear my natural hair,” Richardson told NBC Sports. “So when I became the World Champion and set a championship record, I ran a 10.65, so I had to pull out the natural.”
Unlike the last time she wore her natural hair, Richardson’s fans showed her overwhelming love because of her new look.
“I love the hair, but it’s the CONFIDENCE for me. Wear that [crown emoji].”
“It’s just something about a black woman embracing her natural hair Eat it up.”
“And I’m out here thinking she couldn’t get any prettier. Then she pulls this trick out of her book.”
“It’s cute. Wear it like that all the time!”
“Yassssss Sis!!!!!! Rock that beautiful hair and slay those lanes!!!”
And I'm out here thinking she couldn't get any prettier. Then she pulls this trick out of her book. 💅🤌— StaySingle (@ffejmulham) September 17, 2023
Richardson came back on the track scene earlier this year making the statement that she was not back, she was better. She proved this when she showed up to the U.S. Track and Field Championships in July.
At that meet, which also took place at Heyward Field, Richardson made another hair statement by tossing her old reddish-orange wig to the ground and showing off her new platinum, back-length long braids before setting up in the blocks on her way to winning the 100 meters final.
From there Richardson would prove that she was here to stay, ultimately winning the 100 meters in the World Championships in Budapest, Hungary, last month. She did so in a new set of gold, black, and red braids that some observers said were modeled after the Black American Heritage flag.
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