track and field

DC-Area Native Ziyah Holman Blows Competition Away in Viral Relay Race

Holman, who attended Georgetown Day, overcame a four-second disadvantage and overtook her competitors to blast across the finish line as the crowd shouted in amazement

U. Michigan Athletics, @ziyahleigh__

University of Michigan freshman Ziyah Holman blew away the competition and inspired thousands after a video of her 4x400 relay race went viral.

Holman, who anchored the relay squad on the last leg, entered the race four seconds behind her competitors at the Simmons-Harvey Invitational in Ann Arbor, Michigan, on Jan. 16.

The now-viral video shows Holman receiving the baton from her teammate and then taking off on the track, overcoming first one competitor and then gaining on the other.

As members of the crowd shout and cheer in surprise and excitement, Holman overtakes her second opponent and then blasts across the finish line.

Even after starting out with that four-second disadvantage, Holman managed to win the race for her team, claiming an enviable 51.79-second split.

The video of her win already has more than 3.8 million views on Twitter.

According to the university's track and field website, this was Holman's first competition racing for the Wolverines.

Holman, who's from Hyattsville, Maryland, also set several new records with her impressive time: 2021 NCAA leader, fifth-fastest time in the world, No. 3 on the all-time Michigan list, Michigan first-year record, fastest-ever debut by a Michigan woman, Simmons-Harvey Invitational record, U-M Indoor Track Building record and the fastest time ever run in the state of Michigan.

Before Michigan, Holman was a highly decorated student athlete at Georgetown Day in D.C.

She held a world record for her leg in the 4x400 meter relay at the Pan American u20 championships and was also a two-time D.C. Gatorade student-athlete of the year. As a senior, she was ranked fifth nationally and first in Washington, D.C., in the 400-meter race.

Before committing to Michigan, Holman earned 12 scholarship offers in total, including those from Stanford, Harvard and Princeton.

“I choose Michigan because they have a family-like culture similar to the one here at GDS,” Holman said in an interview with NBC Sports. “In speaking with the coach, I know he has my best interest at heart; not just as an athlete, but as a student as well, and I appreciate that."

Correction (Jan. 22, 2021 5:37 p.m. ET): An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that Holman is a D.C. native. Holman attended Georgetown Day in D.C. but is from Hyattsville, Maryland.

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