Simone Manuel made history recently when she became the first black woman to ever win an individual event in Olympic swimming on Thursday night.
The 20-year-old swimmer tied with Canada’s Penny Oleksiak for the fastest swim time in the women’s 100-meter freestyle. They both made an Olympic record with their incredible speed, timing in at 57.20 seconds, The New York Times reported.
Manuel, who attends Stanford University, was just as shocked as she was excited when she saw her time on the scoreboard, telling the Times that her goal was simply just to get on the medal stand.
“I was pretty shocked,” the Texas native said. “My goal coming in was to get on the medal stand after seeing how I swam in prelims and semifinals. But getting a gold medal in my first Olympics, I still can’t describe it but I’m really excited about it.”
Her win comes right after first time Olympic gymnast Simone Biles won gold for the American women’s gymnast team, which pretty much dominated the competition since the start.
Manuel is one of many black American breakout athletes to make headlines at the Rio Olympics.
Check out the list of other black athletes to make history at the Olympics.
1. John Baxter Taylor, Jr.: Taylor was the first black American to ever win an Olympic Gold medal when he broke a world record with America’s 1,600 meter relay team in 1908.
2. Jesse Owens: Owens was the first black American to win four gold medals at the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin during the height of Adolph Hitler’s reign. He won gold for the 100 meter, the long jump, the 200 meter and the 400 meter relay race for track and field and broke two Olympic world records in the process.
3-4. Tommie Smith and John Carlos: In 1968, Smith (gold winner) and Carlos (silver winner) made history when they raised their black-gloved hand with their heads bowed while standing on the medal podium after winning the 200 meters race for track and field. The stance represented black power in American during the crucial times of the civil rights movement and was considered a silent protest against racial discrimination.
5. Jackie Joyner-Kersee: Not only was Joyner-Kersee the first black American woman to win gold for the long jump but she also was the first American woman to earn more than 7,000 points in the seven-event heptathlon in 1988. The sprinter, who suffered from exercise-induce asthma, ended up winning three golds, one silver and two bronze medals.
6. Muhammad Ali: The boxing champion had already made history when he won a gold medal in the light heavyweight boxing category at the 1960 Rome Games. However, it was when he had the honor of lighting the touch at the 1995 Atlanta Games after being diagnosed with Parkinson’s syndrome disease that brought millions of viewers to tears.