September 19, 2019
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Sanford native headed to world track championships

Charlie Neibergall | AP
Charlie Neibergall | AP
Shelby Houlihan races to the finish line while winning the women's 5,000-meter run at the U.S. Championships athletics meet, Sunday, July 28, 2019, in Des Moines, Iowa.

After falling just short of a top-three finish in Sunday’s 5,000-meter final at the U.S. Outdoor Track & Field Championships, Rachel Schneider finds herself headed for the world championships after all.

The 28-year-old Sanford native will be one of the three runners to represent Team USA at the IAAF World Championships in Doha, Qatar, later this year as U.S. women’s 5,000-meter winner Shelby Houlihan will pass on that event to focus on the 1,500.

Houlihan also won the women’s 1,500-meter title at last weekend’s U.S. championships in Des Moines, Iowa.

“Ticket punched to Doha!,” Schneider wrote in a Twitter post. “After coming down with a crazy cold the week prior to USAs and still fighting with a bit of it through the race, feeling a dose of relief (along with a lot of excitement and gratitude) …”

Schneider, who now lives in Flagstaff, Arizona, finished fourth in the women’s 5,000 final at the U.S. championships in 15 minutes, 17.91 seconds, just 45 hundredths of a second behind third-place Elinor Purrier (15:17.46).

The former track standout at Georgetown University held the lead late in the race before being overtaken by the top three finishers, a trio led by Houlihan (15:15.50) and runner-up Karissa Schweizer (15:17.03).

But with preliminary heats at the world championships in both the 1,500 and 5,000 scheduled to start just 50 minutes apart on Oct. 2 and the finals of both events set to run back-to-back on Oct. 5, Houlihan will focus on the 1,500, leaving Schneider a spot in the 5,000.

The qualifying standard for the world championships in the women’s 5,000 is 15:22.00.


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