LeTourneau cross country coach chases his own Olympic dreams

Local Sports

LONGVIEW, Texas (KETK) – Running is in Dan Michalski’s blood, but he’s not just training for your basic Olympic race, no, he wants to compete at the highest level, in an event known, as the steeplechase.

“It’s a 3,000-meter race with hurdles and a water pit, I’m just built for it, somehow, I like the challenge,” said Michalski.

Michalski, an Ohio native, and a two-time All-American at Indiana University took over the LeTourneau cross country job back in September and says the school has been more than supportive in his Olympic aspirations.

“They are behind me 100-percent, you know, it feels really good to know that hey, that if Dan needs to get off on a weekend where we’re not competing to go compete himself that’s okay,” said Michalski.

Before COVID postponed the Olympics, Michalski said he was in the best shape of his life.

But he’s used his time wisely and is now one of the top-10 steeplechasers in the U.S.

This past week, Michalski broke the prestigious Drake Relays steeplechase record with a lifetime best time of 8:29.83. It is also the third fastest time in the world this year.

“Yeah in a better place and feeling more optimistic about that now than ever before,” said Michalski.

Michalski has another steeplechase event coming up in California on May 9th, leading up to the U.S Championships, and if it all goes his way, he’ll be on the road to Tokyo.

Watch video to see Garrett Sanders’ story.

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