Opening New Doors

jt-pappas-greece

While I was busy prepping for Indoor Heps last Friday, I saw a news story that essentially almost guarantees another HepsNation member a spot at this summer’s Olympic Games.  I opted to wait until Indoor Heps was over so I could share the story without it getting lost in the Indoor Heps coverage.

On Friday, Dartmouth’s Alexi Pappas announced the following on TrackTown USA’s website:

“It is with great pleasure and pride that I announce that I will hereby be representing Greece, where I am a dual citizen by birth, in international competition…  I don’t know exactly what lies ahead, but I do know that this step will open the door for new levels of athletic success and will expand my ability to inspire other runners in the USA, Greece and beyond.”

Pappas will start representing Greece this weekend as she is scheduled to compete in the Women’s Elite 3,000m at the World’s Last Chance Meet being held at the NYC Armory on Friday.  This meet will serve as the final qualifier for the IAAF Indoor World Championships that will be held on March 17th to 20th.  Other HepsNation alumni scheduled to compete include Erik Berg (Brown – 800m; mile), Marvellous Iheukwumere (Columbia – 60m), Greta Feldman (Princeton – 800m; mile), Ashley Higginson (Princeton – 3,000m), and Nadia Eke (Columbia – triple jump).

But ultimately, Pappas’ goal is to represent her ancestral colors at this summer’s Olympic Games in Rio de Janerio.  She met the Olympic qualification standard in the 10,000m (32:15) last May when she ran 32:02.22. She will continue to live and train in Oregon as she finishes up the production of her movie “Tracktown“.

photo by Jeremy Teicher

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