KSL OLYMPICS

U.S. Hurdler Rai Benjamin Uses Music To Get In Medal Mindset

Jun 27, 2024, 3:24 PM

SALT LAKE CITY – With an Olympic Silver medal already on his resume, Team U.S.A. hurdler Rai Benjamin knows precisely how to get his mind right before a race. Benjamin turns to the soundtrack from the famous 2014 Sci-fi/Adventure flick Interstellar to get hyped before stepping on the track.

“Sometimes before my races, sometimes before I workout,” Benjamin said with a toothy smile.  “Specifically, the Interstellar soundtrack. You walk out, you’re on the track, and all my senses get higher. I smell better. I see better. The gun goes off, and that’s where the magic starts.”

RELATED: Utah Set To Host 2029 IBSF Bobsleigh, Skeleton World Championships

The 2020 Tokyo Games silver medalist in the 400-meter hurdles returns to the Summer Olympics for the second time with his eyes on a long-coveted gold medal. Benjamin credits his mother as his hero and recognizes her sacrifices in his track and field journey. However, the self-professed sneakerhead couldn’t talk her into supporting his love of Air Jordan shoes.

“My mom has been there every step of the way. She never wanted to buy me a pair of sneakers. If I wanted a new pair of spikes, she would spend $200 on a new pair of spikes, but not Jordans.”

RELATED: Team U.S.A.’s Maddie Musselman Shares Source Of Her Competitiveness

The Mount Vernon, New York native began his college career at UCLA before transferring to USC to finish his career.

Follow The 2024 Summer Olympics With KSL Sports

The 2024 Paris Olympics are scheduled to open on Friday, July 29, with closing ceremonies on Sunday, August 11.

Brian Preece is a KSLsports.com insider covering the Utah State Aggies, Locals in MLB, and Salt Lake Bees. Follow Brian’s Bees, Beehive baseball, and Aggie athletics coverage here.

Find KSL Sports coverage of the 2024 Paris Summer Olympics here.

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U.S. Hurdler Rai Benjamin Uses Music To Get In Medal Mindset