Russell Dinkins (Princeton ’13) and Daniel Thomas (Cornell ’12) were rivals during their undergraduate years, but now, they are taking a leap of faith together. Russell and Daniel plan to travel, live, and train at the High Altitude Training Center in Iten, Kenya this fall in order to qualify for the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janiero, Brazil. Iten is known as “the Home of Champions” as many Olympic and World championships have lived and train in this region during their athletic careers – including current 800m world record holder and 800m World and Olympic champion David Rushida. Both Daniel and Russell hope they can join Rushida in the 800m in Rio next summer – Daniel for Team Mexico, and Russell for Team USA.
But there is one major hurdle left in their way – fundraising. They estimate that their entire endeavor would cost between $10,000 to $12,000, which includes travel, lodging, and training medical assistance. Not many recent graduates – let alone professional track and field athletes – can say they have that much money saved in the bank for a dream such as this.
Both Russell and Daniel have set up GoFundMe.com webpages to help collect donations for their training trip. Neither one has reached their goal yet, and they plan to leave the country in the next week. The links to their respective funding pages are below.
Good luck to Russell and Daniel on their trip, and good luck to all HepsNation athletes in pursuing their Olympic dreams.