(L-R) Brittni Mason, Noah Malone, Tatyana McFadden and Nick Mayhugh celebrate after winning gold in the 4x100m universal relay at the Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020 on Sept. 03, 2021 in Tokyo.
In the first-ever 4x100-meter universal relay Paralympic final, Team USA stormed to gold in a world-record time of 45.52, as Noah Malone (T12), Brittni Mason (T46), Nick Mayhugh (T37) and Tatyana McFadden (T54) combined to put on a thrilling show on Friday evening in Tokyo.
“I knew that this was the group to be in it,” McFadden said. “We got out really fast, transitioned really well, and there was no one I’d rather have than these three others here with me who trained and worked so hard to get here.”
The final exchange between Mayhugh and McFadden was seamless in the final after a near slip-up in the heats, and the victory marked McFadden’s 20th career Paralympic medal and eighth gold.
“We had a small team meeting after the heat and said this is a real opportunity for us,” Mayhugh commented. “We smoothed out a few things and were able to execute, and to do it with the legend-ary Tatyana McFadden in her last race on the track here was incredible.”
With a full set of medals already in Tokyo — gold, silver and bronze — the 32-year-old McFadden has one remaining event Sunday, when she’ll go for her first Paralympic gold medal in her signa-ture event, the marathon.
The U.S., whose athletes spoke the universal relay into existence, finished nearly two seconds ahead of second-place Great Britain are now the Paralympic and world champions in the event.
“It’s been really amazing,” McFadden said, “and I wouldn’t want to do it with any other team.”