Connor Winter Stays Local

Connor Winter edges out Smoky Hill's Matt Caldwell at the finish of last year's state 800 meters. Photo by Paul Jaeger.


Due to a fluky boarding accident, you didn't hear much from Connor Winter last cross country season. But the college recruiters didn't forget about Arapahoe's triple crown winner from last spring.


Among the school's on Winter's short list were Stanford, Georgetown, Oklahoma State, and Colorado. Winter eventually signed with the school where he wouldn't have to redo the colors of his training wardrobe.


Truthfully, the reasoning was a little more sophisticated than that, "In the end I decided the running atmosphere of Boulder, altitude training, a great coach, and a beautiful school was what appealed to me the most.  So CU was the spot for me, and I could not help but get excited because CU has had the most Olympic athletes [of the school's under consideration],and that is every runner's dream."


"I am very excited to get to know my new teammates and create friendships that will last forever.


Despite the anticipation of what lies ahead, it's been a long road back from a frustrating injury that kept him out of most of last fall's cross country season.


"I learned quite a bit from the experience.  The first thing that I learned and have applied to my track training is that running is very fragile, and it can be gone in seconds. So I have a new appreciation for running and taking care of my body so I can be successful. I also want to show that I am still able to run fast and compete with the best guys not only in state but all over the country." The disappointment of the cross country season has brought a "renewed drive and appreciation of running."


Recent performances have indicated that Winter is already closing in on the kind of speed he put on display at last spring's state track meet. His most recent indoor mile time was 4:27. Take the better part of two seconds off for the mile-to-1600 adjustment, and you're looking at a very competitive early-season track time. The competition thus far has not been able to stick with him. More tests await on the horizon.


Winter would like to chase some all-classification records this spring. We wish him the best in that pursuit, knowing how elusive such records can be.


"Overall my body feels strong. The mental aspect of training hard and racing fast is coming back. I can't wait for the season."