J. Klecker Olympic Games Tokyo 2020

Joe Klecker almost seemed embarrassed to admit that his trip to Tokyo for the postponed 2020 Olympics would be his first time ever leaving the country.

J. Klecker Olympic Games Tokyo 2020

Naturally, Klecker was concerned with making this a productive business trip rather than a vacation, and the ex-University of Colorado distance specialist did exactly that on Friday morning local time. Klecker ran the 10,000-meter course in a time of 28 minutes, 14.18 seconds, good enough for 16th place in his Olympic debut.

J. Klecker Olympic Games Tokyo 2020

We’ll be spending most of our time at the athletes’ village, but I can’t wait to see what it’s all about! I only have a week to experience all that Japan has to offer. My team and I have been working hard all year to make it to Tokyo, and we deserve to enjoy this experience together.

Klecker, a nine-time All-American in track and cross country at CU, ran in his first international event in temperatures of 86 degrees and 90 percent humidity.

That certainly hindered Klecker’s performance at his peak, but he was still able to stick with the front pack for the first 20 minutes of the race. Klecker had set 10 personal records in 11 races while training with fellow former Colorado track star Dathan Ritzenhein leading up to the Olympics.

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Among the American runners, Klecker placed third, and Grant Fisher was the top American in fifth (27:46.39). With a time of 28 minutes and 11 seconds, William Kincaid beat out Klecker by one place. The winner was Selemon Barega of Ethiopia in a time of 27 minutes, 43 seconds, followed by Ugandans Joshua Cheptegei (27:43:63) and Jacob Kiplimo (27:43:64). (27:43.88).

Last Words

On Saturday, former CU track stars Emma Coburn and Valerie Constien will race in the 3,000-meter steeplechase preliminaries, bringing the limelight back to the alma mater once again after their 2016 bronze medal performances. Time in Montana is 6:40 p.m., so get ready!

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