2016 Olympic Trials Results
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Clayton Murphy Nike
In His Words
(listen to Clayton’s full audio below)
“2016 for me, I mean, was just an incredible year all the way from my indoor season, all the way through my collegiate outdoor season, into the Olympic trials, into the summer, into the Olympics, and even following the Olympics, I mean, 2016 was just and oh, felt like a rollercoaster. It just kept clicking up to the top and I just kept rising up and rising up.
And it kind of the peak of it was the trials. And then it ultimately peaked again at the Olympics and in August in Rio de Janeiro. But it was just an incredible year. I started at the University of Akron winning the indoor 800 meters at NCAA is in Birmingham, Alabama, and ran like a stadium or track record time and was just running incredibly well and knew that the Olympic trials were on the horizon. And I just come off 2015 where I represented Team USA at Pan AMS, NACAC and World Championships.
So I had the taste in my mouth of wanting to represent the team again and represent the USA again at the Olympics. And so I just came off the indoor season just super hungry come outdoor season and I didn’t lose for a really long time. I have no idea how long it was and I didn’t really know that I was on any kind of streak really all year until I got until late in the summer and really started to realize what was going on even beyond the Olympic trials.
I think when I really realized was at the one meet in Houston, I ran against 1000 meters in an open race against Matthew Centrowitz and kind of realized how well I was really running at the Olympic trials as super special because I went in there with the absolute goal to make the team in each round seemingly got tougher and tougher. And the first round. I remember finishing the first round, feeling good on the track or once I finished, I felt absolutely horrible.
I was throwing up. I had heat exhaustion. I didn’t think there’s any way I could recover for the next day. And the semifinal was almost the same way. I finished the race, felt OK during the race, but then after I just felt absolutely horrible. And so I spent the 48 hours between the semifinal and final just trying to recover as much as possible. I remember some little things like there was only there’s nine of us in the race in the final and they were gonna put us in two alleys and I started to file.
I had my agent and coach ready to file a protest of how they were gonna start the race. Then I realized I had a really good lane draw and where I was in the inside of the outside alley inside said I absolutely text him and called him. I said, Hey, don’t file protests, no protest, no protest. Like, let me have the lane. I have a good lane. Like let’s hopefully they run it this way.
And after that, after I kind of got that little confidence boost even just off of something minor like that, I went to the final just superexcited no pressure on me. I just go out there to make the team. And if I had, I missed the team. It really wasn’t going to really change. I mean, people were still gonna support me. I’d just signed my Nike contract prior to that. I mean, I had I had really a lot going for me.
So I kind of ran freewill during the final and had a super fun with it. I made some tactical errors in the final. I kind of wish I wouldn’t have and maybe could have even ran better. But come away with the win the Olympic trials and carry out what I said, like the momentum I had from the indoor to the outdoor all the way through my first professional summer into the Olympic Games was just an incredible experience. And I think this peak picture speaks that into existence, that smile, the flag.
My new Nike jersey just I was on cloud nine and kept rolling in and I hope to duplicate that going into 2020, 2021 Tokyo Olympic Games and beyond that. And to World Championships and Olympic Games beyond that. So it’s just 2016 from me was a super special year. This picture means so much, it just represents so much of what I went through and the success I had that year.”