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Mu not in the relay pool of the US track and field team for Paris. Richardson and Lyles in the Olympic squad

Mu not in the relay pool of the US track and field team for Paris. Richardson and Lyles in the Olympic squad

The only real surprise in the release of the U.S. track and field roster on Tuesday was who didn’t make the list: Athing Mu.

Although the middle-distance runner failed to qualify to defend her Olympic 800-meter title at the U.S. qualifying trials, she was believed to be considered for a spot in the relay pool. Instead, one of track’s biggest names will remain on the bench for the Paris Games, which begin later this month. Mu had been recovering from a torn thigh muscle before the qualifying trials.

As expected, Noah Lyles, Sha’Carri Richardson, Gabby Thomas and Sydney McLaughlin-Levrone were all part of the U.S. squad, which included more than 100 athletes. The U.S. squad includes four reigning Olympic champions: Ryan Crouser (shot put), McLaughlin-Levrone (400-meter hurdles), Katie Moon (pole vault) and Valarie Allman (discus).

Quincy Wilson, a 16-year-old high school student from Maryland who finished sixth in the 400-meter preliminaries with excellent times, and sprinter Christian Coleman are in the relay group.

Mu missed the chance to make the team in the 800-meter race when she got tangled up and fell onto the track during the finals of the U.S. Olympic trials two weeks ago, finishing last in the race. Mu was a key player in the team’s gold medal-winning 4×400-meter relay at the Tokyo Olympics.

Lyles will be the one to watch in the 100- and 200-meter dashes. He won both events at last summer’s World Championships in Budapest, Hungary, and helped the U.S. win the 4×100-meter title. Kenny Bednarek will also compete in both sprint events.

It will be Richardson’s Olympic debut, the reigning 100-meter world champion. She missed the 2021 Tokyo Games due to a positive marijuana test. Richardson is likely to be the sprinter to beat in Paris.

Karissa Schweizer and Grant Fisher both took places in the 5,000 and 10,000 meter races.

There were some shuffling after the Trials, with Elle St. Pierre opting to focus on the 1,500 meters and dropping the 5,000. The spot went to Parker Valby, but the University of Florida runner decided to focus only on the 10,000. That led to Whittni Morgan getting the spot in the 5,000 after placing fifth at the Trials. Morgan has recovered quickly after undergoing patellar tendon debridement surgery in November.

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AP Summer Olympics: https://apnews.com/hub/2024-paris-olympic-games