photo by Jane Monti, Race Results Weekly; used with permission
Wright Finishes Sixth at European Championships in Professional Debut
BERLIN, Germany – AUGUST, 8, 2018 – In her professional debut, HOKA ONE ONE Northern Arizona Elite newcomer Alice Wright, representing her native Great Britain, finished sixth over 10,000 meters at the European Championships in 32:36.45.
In a race where she entered with the tenth-fastest personal best, Wright executed a patient race plan working her way from 11th place at the start, into eighth just after the five kilometer mark and eventually finished in sixth position. She narrowly missed catching the defending champion Yasemin Can of Turkey, who finished fifth in 32:34.34. The race was won by Lonah Chemtai Salpeter of Israel.
Wright said the unseasonably warm conditions in Berlin were the toughest she faced all year.
“I started off pretty near the back and tried to reel my competitors back in,” Wright said. “It’s a shame I couldn’t catch a couple more and snag a medal but overall I am pleased with my senior debut for Great Britain and can’t wait to work toward the medal in future Championships.”
HOKA NAZ Elite head coach Ben Rosario said he was impressed with Wright’s ability to handle the pressure of a Championship meet.
“We knew that Alice had made it a habit in college of running her best on the biggest stages, but it can be a whole new thing to compete in front of tens of thousands of fans at an International Championship,” Rosario said. “She went out there excited about the opportunity, embraced the moment and used the energy to her advantage, which is exactly what you want to see from an athlete.”
Her race in Berlin will mark the end of a massively successful year for Wright. Prior to joining HOKA NAZ Elite, she concluded her collegiate career at the University of New Mexico with a fourth-place finish at the NCAA Outdoor Championships in the 10,000 meters, becoming the first woman ever to collect four All-American honors at that distance. Other highlights from the year included an NCAA team title and a 13th place individual finish at the NCAA Cross Country Championships, a ninth-place finish in the 5,000 meters at the NCAA Indoor Championships and a personal best of 32:15.75 at the Stanford Invitational in March over 10,000 meters.
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