As we celebrate the monumental accomplishments made by African Americans in the past, there is Black history being made in the present. According to HBCU Buzz, North Carolina A&T State University track athlete Kayla White ran the world’s fastest 200m.
White—who hails from Miami—broke the record at the University of Arkansas’ Tyson Invitational competition, the news outlet writes. She competed against some of the best track stars in the country. White finished off with a 22.82 sprint, edging out runners from Louisiana State University, Arkansas, and Alabama. After hitting that milestone, she is now ranked No. 1 in the world, the country, and her school’s conference which is the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC). Aside from holding the top spot for the 200m, White is also nationally ranked in 60m and the 60-meter hurdles competition.
“She’s special,” Duane Ross, director of track and field programs at North Carolina A&T State University, said in a statement. “She was due to drop something fast. Her training has been going well and she’s hungry to be the best. I knew the race was won once she stepped into the blocks. Her focus and preparation were great this weekend.” Last season, White received NCAA indoor All-American honors for the 60mh competition.
“Once I found out I was really surprised and excited at the same time,” she told WFMY. White also shared that she never set out to become a track star. She was interested in dance and it wasn’t until a coach convinced her to try track that she started her athletic journey and fell in love with the sport. “I would tell other runners to stay dedicated, trust your training, and believe in yourself. Surround yourself with positivity, what you give out is what you get.”
Black athletes are continuing the tradition of breaking barriers in 2019. Earlier this month, a group of women from Antigua became the first all-Black women’s rowing team to cross the Atlantic Ocean.