Jones.jpg
Photo by: Rick Chapman (born 1966), Gelatin silver print, 2001 (printed 2003), National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; gift of Rick Chapman and ESPN.

As a student at the University of North Carolina, Marion Jones led UNC's women's basketball team to a NCAA championship and was named an All-American in four track events. But by the time she earned her journalism degree in 1997, she had decided to give up basketball to become "the fastest woman in the world." It was not long before she was making good on that ambition. Soon after graduation, she claimed firsts in the 100-meter sprint and the long jump at the U.S. Track and Field Championships, and at the 2000 Olympics, things only got better. There, she became the first woman in track and field to claim five Olympic medals-three gold and one bronze in sprinting events and another bronze in the long jump.

This photograph was part of a series of portraits of twenty-five athletes that Rick Chapman took to mark the tenth anniversary of the ESPY awards given by the cable sports channel ESPN. The backdrop for the likeness was the aluminum bleachers at an athletic field in Raleigh, North Carolina.