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Destination Tokyo – Joe Klecker books his spot with Team USA

Less than a year after its formation, OAC is heading to the biggest stage of all.

 

Joe Klecker hailed the “insane” spirit of the On Athletics Club after qualifying for Team USA and declared: “I won’t be the last one to make the Olympics.”

 

Klecker, a founding member of OAC in August 2020, finished third in the 10k trial with a time of 27:54.90. He was greeted at the Hayward Field finish line in Eugene, Oregon, by OAC team-mates Geordie Beamish, Carlos Villarreal and Olli Hoare for a memorable moment of celebration and triumph.

 

“So much of what we talk about at practice is trying to push each other to get on that Olympic team.” 

  

“All of us have different journeys to get there and you can talk about it all you want, but to actually go and make it is very hard. To get there is pretty special. It will give a lot of momentum to OAC. I don’t think I’ll be the last one (from OAC) to make it."

     

 

“When I see Geordie, Carlos and Olli, yeah they’re my team – but they’re my best friends too. It’s pretty insane how invested they are in my journey."

 

“They’re trying to make the Olympics themselves, but they care enough to come out here and be there to support me for these full 10 days. That means so much. Other athletes might want to be back home training, but the culture we have means we thrive on being there for each other.”

   

In the next chapter of a remarkable family story, Klecker will follow in his mom Janis’s footsteps. She competed in the marathon at the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games. Twenty-nine years later, Joe is ready to step up and write his own piece of history.

 

OAC coach Dathan Ritzenhein said: “Joe was the first athlete we signed to OAC and we put a lot of stock into him building the culture of the team. I’m just so proud of him. What he’s doing is incredible and inspiring for the rest of the team.”

  

Origins
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