June 19, 2013
FORT WORTH - TCU track and field stars of the past and present will take to the track at the 2013 USA Track and Field Championships and Junior Championships beginning Thursday at Drake Stadium in Des Moines, Iowa. A total of five athletes with connections to TCU will be competing throughout the week.
The action starts on Thursday at 12:10 p.m. when Raymond Bozmans will compete in the junior men's 100-meter dash semifinals with the final coming the same afternoon. That evening, Charles Silmon and Jessica Young will begin their weeks with the first rounds of the men's and women's 100-meter dash. To close out the evening, Ashley Eckhoff will be one of the top seeds competing in the junior women's 5,000-meter run.
Friday night will again feature Silmon and Young, who if they advance from Thursday will have the opportunity to compete in the semifinals and the finals of the 100-meter dash. The duo will be back on the track Saturday afternoon for their first rounds of the 200-meter dash. Saturday will also see Whitney Gipson compete in the women's long jump. Sunday will again be a chance for Silmon and Young to compete in the semifinals and finals of the 200-meter dash.
Bozmans had a strong finish to his debut campaign with the Horned Frogs, earning first-team All-America honors as the anchor of TCU's men's 4x100 relay team that finished seventh at the NCAA Championships. While being an important cog to TCU's sprint relay, he also improved his individual performances throughout the season. Bozmans finished second to Silmon at the Big 12 Championships in the 100-meter dash and was 18th in the 100 at the NCAA West Preliminaries.
Eckhoff's season finished a little disappointingly as she missed out by less than a second in the 5,000 of making it to the NCAA West Preliminaries, but she showed her strength throughout the rest of the season. After one outdoor season, she already ranks in TCU's all-time top-five for the women's 3,000, 5,000 and 10,000-meter runs. She scored a point for the Horned Frogs at the Big 12 Outdoor Championships with her eighth place finish. She has the second-fastest seed time amongst the junior 5K competitors.
Silmon's spectacular outdoor season brings him to Des Moines as a threat to make the national team for the World Championships in August. A semifinalist for The Bowerman, the most prestigious award in college track and field, Silmon was crowned the fastest man in the NCAA with his victory in the 100-meter dash at the national championships. He has ranked in the top-10 in the world throughout the year in both the 100 and 200-meter dash, and was the Big 12 champion in both events.
Gipson's first season as a professional has been solid. A constant presence at IAAF Diamond League events, the 2012 NCAA Indoor and Outdoor women's long jump champion finished second at the USA Indoor Championships in the long jump. Gipson has a history at Drake Stadium, the site of her NCAA outdoor title last season and where she finished third as part of a loaded Drake Relays field back in April.
Young is peaking at the right time, running the she has all season coming into the national championships. TCU's school record holder in the indoor 60-meter dash and outdoor 100 and 400-meter dash, Young also has a history at Drake Stadium, finishing second in the women's 100-meter dash at the 2011 NCAA Championships.