Felix Sanchez ran the Olympic 400-meter hurdles final with the memory of his late grandma on his mind and in his heart.
He ran with a photo of the two of them pinned beneath his race bib, and “Abuela” — Spanish for “Grandmother” — writtAnd after those shoes carried him to a no-doubt-about-it victory in 47.63 seconds Monday night for his second career gold at age 34, and the Dominican Republic’s first medal of the 2012 Games, Sanchez pulled out that picture, placed it down on the track, knelt and tenderly kissed the image of the woman who raised him.
“I’ve been really emotional all week, thinking about her,” Sanchez said. “All of us do it — you think about winning, you train so hard. You get to this moment and everything has to go right for you to pull it off.”