Allyson Felix launched her quest to qualify for a fifth consecutive Olympics with a comfortable victory in the opening 400m heats at the US track and field trials on Friday.
The 35-year-old star, the only female athlete in history to win six Olympic track and field gold medals, eased through her heat at Hayward Field in a time of 50.99sec.
That time was outside her season best of 50.66sec and well off her personal best of 49.26, but was more than good enough to see her into the next round.
"It's nice to be back," Felix said afterwards, adding that she was conserving energy ahead of the later rounds.
"It's my fifth and final Olympic trials so I'm trying to take it all in. Just want to savour it and be smart. I really want to make this team."
Felix was forced to re-adjust her training regimen last year after the pandemic forced the postponement of the Tokyo Olympics by one year.
Felix, who plans to retire after the Tokyo games, said the postponement had at least allowed her daughter the opportunity be more aware of her mother's track career.
"It's really cool. Initially I was so disappointed with everything getting postponed but then I just started to see the silver linings in everything and that's one of the big ones -- she's so aware and able to enjoy this as well," Felix said.
The semi-finals of the 400m take place on Saturday with the final set for Sunday.
The top three finishers will book places on the US team for Tokyo but athletes finishing outside the top three may still travel to Japan as members of the relay squad.