May 25, 2024; Eugene, Oregon, USA; Grant Holloway (USA) wins the 110m hurdles in 13.03 during the 49th Pre Classic at Hayward Field. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Gator Great Grant Holloway To Compete In U.S. Olympic Trials

Later this week, both current and former Gator track and field athletes will compete for the opportunity to go to the Paris Olympics in July. Still a member of the Florida pro-group, Olympic silver medalist and Gator great Grant Holloway is set to begin action on Monday at the 2024 U.S. Olympic Trials in Eugene, Oregon.

Last Time Around

Just two years out of his time competing at the University of Florida, Grant won the 2021 Olympic Trials in the 110-meter high-hurdles to advance to Tokyo. At the age of 23, he achieved a lifetime goal of having the word “Olympian” next to his name.

Although he was the favorite to win, Holloway was bested at the Tokyo Olympics. Jamaica’s Hansle Parchment took the gold, catching Holloway at the line to win by five-hundredths of a second. Despite the second place finish, Holloway still put up an amazing time of 13.09 seconds to bring a medal back to the U.S.

Now 26-years-old, Holloway recognizes his fault in the Olympic final:

“I was a little bit immature in the sport, kind of just running off of pure talent. Now that I’m a little bit older, a little bit wiser, I can see what I did wrong in that race and correct my mistakes, and going into this year, it is going to be a better year.”

Redemption Achieved

Last year, Holloway found himself in familiar territory: atop the world in the hurdles. However, this time was much sweeter than the others. Holloway not only achieved a three-peat at the World Championships in the 110-meter hurdles, but he also beat his opponent Parchment by more than one-tenth of a second.

With this win, Grant has a boost of confidence going into Paris:

“It’s just a learning curve. You think you know everything in the sport when you’re running so fast, but obviously you have to be able to do it on that day, at that stage, in that moment, so I just continue just to learn, just to grow from it.”

By achieving this third consecutive world title, Holloway became the second hurdler to ever achieve this feat. The late American Greg Foster was the last to do it in 1983, 1987 and 1991.

Record-Breaking Performances

Holloway still holds the collegiate record in the 110-meter high hurdles with a time of 12.98 seconds. He set this achievement in the 2019 NCAA Championships where he won his third consecutive national title in the event. The record was previously owned by Renaldo Nehemiah from the University of Maryland for 40 years.

His record-breaking career would not stop there. A few months ago in Albuquerque at the U.S. Indoor Championships, Holloway outdid himself by breaking his own world record in the 60m hurdles with a time of 7.27. He now holds seven of the fastest times ever recorded in the event.

The former Gator is still chasing down the world record in the 110-meter hurdles. His personal best of 12.81 seconds is only one-hundredth of a second off of Aries Merritt‘s record set in 1985.

Fight for Paris

While action begins at the trials on Friday, Holloway will not hit the track until the 110-meter high-hurdles preliminary event next Monday. His goal is simple:

“Honestly just continue to be the top dog. I’m the number one American. I’ve proven myself for about five, six years now, and I just want to stay there.”

The U.S. Olympic Trials is such a unique experience in that athletes compete against their future USA teammates. Holloway has had the opportunity to race against Daniel Roberts, former Kentucky Wildcat, for several years now. From competing against each other in the SEC to on the world stage, the two hurdlers continue to push each other to run faster and faster. Holloway and Roberts will go head-to-head, as the nation’s best hurdlers fight for three spots on Team USA.

Representing The Orange and Blue

Not only will Holloway have the opportunity to dawn the letters “USA” at the Olympics for the second time, but he will also represent Gator Nation globally once again.

“Just to have that orange and blue and also to represent that red, white and blue, it’s an amazing thing. I am looking forward to, obviously, going to Olympic Trials and doing what I have to do to put on that red, white and blue one more time.”

Holloway appreciates how Gator fans continue to support him and his fellow track and field athletes in the UF collegiate program and the pro-group training on campus:

About Victoria Kitchens

Gainesville native Victoria Kitchens attends the University of Florida. She is a second-year Journalism major with a specialization in Sports and Media.

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