Distance runners in distant location

The USF track teams will compete at the Florida Relays this weekend without two of its distance runners. While a majority of the Bulls will be competing in Gainesville, Christa Benton and Adam Chumbley will be in Palo Alto, Calif., for the Stanford Invitational.

“They went to run the 10,000 meters there,” USF coach Greg Thiel said. “It’s a great place to run it.”

USF distance coach Rita Arndt will accompany Benton, a junior, and Chumbley, a senior, on the trip to California. Thiel said he is sending them to this event to give them the best chance at a nationally qualifying time.

“(Stanford) is a very, very fast 10,000,” Thiel said. “It has historically been the fastest 10,000 meter race in the country. We wanted to get them in a really good race.”

As for the rest of the team, Thiel said he just wants to see improvement and progress in all of his athletes. Thiel also said he wants to see the number of good performances increase from last year’s event.

“(We want) to get better, and have a larger group of kids have solid performances,” Thiel said. “Last year we had some good ones, but we want to have more than that.”

As always, Thiel said he wants more consistency from his team. With solid, and at times exceptional, performances under their belt, the Bulls are looking for a good meet where everyone takes it up a notch, Thiel said.

“We’re hoping that everybody steps up and does a little better,” Thiel said. “We want a lot of kids to have solid meets this weekend.”