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Keep An Eye On These Eight Athletes At U.S. Paralympic Track And Field Trials

By Todd Kortemeier | June 13, 2021, 10 a.m. (ET)

Brittni Mason celebrates winning the women's 100-meter T47 final at the IPC World Para Athletics Championships 2019 on Nov. 12, 2019 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

 

It won’t be long now before the athletes of U.S. Paralympics Track & Field find out their Paralympic fates. From Paralympic veterans to first timers, all will want to be at their best for the U.S. Paralympic Team Trials in Minneapolis June 17-20. 

Here’s a look at just a few of the athletes to watch looking to secure their spots in Tokyo:

Jeremy Campbell competes in the men's discus throw F44 final at the IPC World Para Athletics Championships 2017 on July 16, 2017 in London.

 

Jeremy Campbell

Can a three-time Paralympic medalist continue to raise his game even more? That certainly appears to be the case for Campbell, a two-time gold medalist in discus and a modern pentathlon gold medalist in 2008. Campbell came up short in his bid for a third Paralympic discus gold medal with a fourth-place finish in 2016, but recently posted a new world record throw of 65.86 meters at the Desert Challenge Games in Arizona. Expect Campbell to remain at the top of his game.

 

Beatriz Hatz

Hatz is one of the younger members of Team USA at 20 and is looking to make her first Paralympic Games. She’s already accomplished a lot at the junior level, winning two world junior championships. The sprinter made her senior world championship debut in 2019, finishing fifth in the 200-meter and eighth in the 100-meter. The 2018 U.S. Paralympics Track & Field High School Female Athlete of the Year moved to the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Training Center in Chula Vista, California, shortly after graduation to advance her training in pursuit of a Paralympic spot.

 

Noah Malone

Malone will finally get the chance to build on some of the momentum he built up with an outstanding 2019. Malone won gold medals in the 4x100 at the Parapan American Games, gold in the 100 and 200 at the world junior championships, then made his senior world championships debut by helping the U.S. win gold in the 4x100 universal relay. Oh, and he was also Indiana state champion in the 200. Malone has since gone on to Indiana State, where he was a standout freshman on the Sycamores track team. Malone is already near a Paralympic level; his personal best time in the 100 would have won gold in 2016.

Tatyana McFadden reacts in the women's wheelchair division of the 2019 TCS New York City Marathon on Nov. 3, 2019 in New York City.

 

Tatyana McFadden
It’s perhaps redundant to remind anyone they need to watch a 17-time Paralympic medalist. But anytime there’s a chance to see an all-time great of the sport, one never wants to look away. McFadden is chasing a sixth Paralympic Games and has shown no signs of slowing down. Still just 32, McFadden has plenty of racing left in her. Should she qualify for Tokyo, McFadden is expected to compete at every distance and in marathon, which she has yet to win a gold medal in despite holding 22 major marathon titles.

Amanda McGrory
This could be the final go-round in the decorated career of McGrory, a three-time Paralympian and seven-time medalist. The 13-time world championship medalist — including gold medals won at 800 and 5,000 meters — has within the past year begun working as an archivist with the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee, helping to preserve and honor the history of Team USA. But before leaving the track for good, McGrory will take another shot at adding to her own already impressive history.
 
Brittni Mason
Mason has been one of the quickest risers in U.S. Para track and field. A standout at Eastern University, Mason has been competing internationally since 2019, when she made her world championship debut with a gold medal in the 100. While making the Paralympic Games and having success is very much a top priority for Mason, she also hopes to inspire a younger generation of athletes.

Justin Phongsavanh competes during the men's javelin throw F54 at the IPC World Para Athletics Championships 2019 on Nov. 13, 2019 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

 

Justin Phongsavanh
Four months after becoming paralyzed in October 2015, Phongsavanh reached out to Adaptive Sports Iowa about competing in Para athletics. By 2017, he was a national champion in javelin. Phongsavanh has since competed at the world championships in 2019, finishing fourth, and recently set a personal best with a throw of 31.73. 

Roderick Townsend
Fans should be watching to see if Townsend can maintain his world dominance in high jump. The reigning Paralympic gold medalist and world champion is also the world record holder. Townsend has won the high jump world championship in every year he’s competed, starting in 2015. And just for good measure, Townsend is the reigning Paralympic gold medalist in the long jump, too.
 

Todd Kortemeier

Todd Kortemeier is a sportswriter, editor and children’s book author from Minneapolis. He is a contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.

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