Claressa Shields is an American boxer. She is the first American woman to win a gold medal at the London Olympics in 2012. 2012 was the first year women’s boxing was allowed in the Olympics.
> Read Ariel Levy’s A Ring of One’s Own for the New Yorker, excerpted here:
“I always knew I’d have a champion,” he said. “I just never thought it’d be a girl.”
The girl’s name is Claressa Shields. She started training with Crutchfield when she was eleven, and though she is only a junior in high school, she has all the prerequisites of athletic stardom. Everyone realized it at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials this February, when the twenty-four best female amateurs in the country competed for three spots in the upcoming London Olympics—the first in history that will allow women to box for a medal. Shields weighs in at a hundred and fifty-eight pounds; she fights as a middleweight, one of the three weight classes in the women’s division. (The men’s division has ten.) The bouts were held in a windowless auditorium of the Northern Quest Resort & Casino, outside Spokane, Washington, a sprawling complex full of slot machines and cigarette smoke, with fourteen restaurants and a view of the local prison.