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Purrier St. Pierre races to 10th in Olympic finals

Published: Aug. 6, 2021 at 7:02 AM EDT
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MONTGOMERY, Vt. (WCAX) - Montgomery, Vermont native Elle Purrier St. Pierre completed her Olympic journey Friday, running to 10th place in the 1500 meter final.

Kenya’s Faith Kipyegon dominated the race, capturing gold and breaking an Olympic record with a time of 3:53:11. Laura Muir of Great Britain took silver, and Sifan Hassan of the Netherlands took the bronze.

Faith Kipyegon, of Kenya celebrates after winning gold after the final of the women's...
Faith Kipyegon, of Kenya celebrates after winning gold after the final of the women's 1,500-meters at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Friday, Aug. 6, 2021, in Tokyo, Japan.(Charlie Riedel | AP)

There were some tense moments and a lot of emotion over the roughly four-minute race. Purrier St. Pierre ran her heart out but couldn’t quite keep pace with the podium finishers as Faith Kipyegon of Kenya would claim the gold in Olympic record time. Purrier St. Pierre’s time of 4:01:75 was the best among the Americans, and good enough for a 10th place finish. It wasn’t the medal she was hoping for, but Elle’s family couldn’t be more proud.

“So, it’s pretty hard to describe. We’re just so proud of Elle and how far she’s come to get where she is. All the dedication, the hard work. We love her so much,” said Jamie St. Pierre, Elle’s husband.

“I can’t explain how much pride there is there. It’s just a great joy, and to know that your child is doing that... you know, it’s wonderful,” said Annie Purrier, Elle’s mom.

A top ten finish is a remarkable achievement for anyone, especially for someone from such a small corner of Vermont. For now, the plan is for Elle to return to Vermont, but maybe we’ll be able to catch her three years from now in Paris.

In a statement, Gov. Phil Scott Friday congratulated Purrier St. Pierre on her achievement to become an Olympic finalist. “Elle showed the world what this Brave Little State is capable of, and she should be incredibly proud of what she’s accomplished. Vermonters are eagerly awaiting her return home so we can celebrate her success on the world stage and thank her for inspiring us,” Scott said.

Purrier St. Pierre, in a social media post prior to Friday’s final, thanked her family and supporters. She especially paid tribute to her late grandmother, Beverly Taisey Purrier. “I have felt her presence with me on many occasions but nothing quite like on Wednesday night,” Purrier St. Pierre said.

Related stories:

Purrier St. Pierre advances to Olympic final

Family, friends and neighbors cheer on Elle Purrier St. Pierre at Richford High School

Montgomery cheers on hometown Olympic hero

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