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Fort Lauderdale Track Star Wants To Win Gold

Sanya Richards-Ross qualified for the Olympics in the 400-meter dash and the 200-meter

By Chris Clark
|  Tuesday, Jul 3, 2012  |  Updated 6:29 PM EDT
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Olympic Fashion Through the Ages

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Sanya Richards-Ross celebrates after winning the women's 400-meter dash final at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Track & Field Team Trials at Hayward Field on June 24 in Eugene, Oregon.

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Sanya Richards-Ross may have a case of double vision, but she only has one goal.

“Hopefully win lots of gold,” she told NBC 6.

The former star of her Fort Lauderdale high school has a chance to lead Team USA to a pair of medals in the London 2012 Olympic Games just weeks from now.

Richards-Ross is the favorite in the 400-meter dash, an event she won in the U.S. Olympic Track Trials in Eugene, Oregon last week. She also qualified in the 200-meter, finishing third behind Allyson Felix and Carmelita Jeter.

The dual opportunity gives Richards-Ross a chance to erase the disappointment of Beijing, where she jumped out to a big lead in the 400-meter final, only to fade late, settling for a bronze medal.

Richards-Ross believes she was dealing with a misdiagnosed medical condition at the time. She says that’s been corrected, and if she continues her dominance this year, the Olympic results will be corrected too.

“It means the world to me to have the opportunity to represent Team USA,” Richards-Ross told  NBC 6. “I’ve learned a lot between 2008 and 2012, and I feel like I’ve grown up a whole lot and matured, and I know now that you can’t win the Olympic race until the Olympic final.”

Born in Jamaica, Richards-Ross moved to the U.S. when she was 12 and ran for St. Thomas Aquinas High School before taking her talents to the University of Texas. She then won gold medals in the 4x400-meter relay teams in Athens and Beijing, but dealt with individual disappointment in 2008.

“I’m just going to keep going out trying to perfect my race, and hopefully on Aug. 5, I will get it right,” she said.

The 27-year-old, outfitted in her trademark long sleeves, has been getting it right a lot this year. In addition to winning the trials with the fastest time this year, she’s also the 2012 world indoor champion.

An Olympic gold medal would complete an impressive year for the Richards-Ross household. Her husband Aaron Ross is an NFL cornerback who won the 2012 Super Bowl with the New York Giants. Ross will play for Jacksonville this upcoming season, but not before a trip to Europe.

“My husband is going to get a chance to come this year, which will be unique and very exciting,” Richards-Ross said. “He’s kind of the one person who in my inner circle I can really relate to as far as wanting to perform at your best on the big day when millions of people are watching, so this is going to be amazing for me.”

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