Making a run for gold

Sophomore All-American ready for 2021 season

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Men’s Track & Field Runner Victor Rinaldi

Alex Manteufel, Journalist

Victor Rinaldi has stayed focused during the COVID-19 pandemic and his goals remain the same, he wants to be ready for the season and continue to contribute for UW-Whitewater’s Men’s Track and Field team. With the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference suspending sports until December 31, 2020, Rinaldi has had to adapt to new and unique circumstances. Rinaldi has been a key part of the 4×100-meter relay, earning All-American honors in 2019. He’ll look to continue his success next time the WIAC can compete, which will hopefully happen in 2021.  

What made you choose UW-Whitewater to continue your track career?

Coach Ireland. After my first conversation with him, he seemed really smart compared to the other coaches I talked to. Then I came on a tour and liked the campus, so I decided this is where I was going.  

What are the main events you compete in?

60m, 100m, 200m and 4x100m 

What has been your favorite track accomplishment?

Placing at conference in the 100 meter. I was struggling at the start of the season, I wasn’t competing the way I wanted. After placing at the conference meet, that helped me gain my confidence back. I was then able to use that confidence to help our relay earn All-American.

What is the plan for this year’s track season?

My plan for this season is to focus on my weak points like my starts. My starts have come a long way, but there are some bad habits I need to fix, which requires a lot of thinking and reps. Also making sure my form stays locked in when running a lot of races at meets. 

What are your goals for this season?

My goals for this season are no different from any other season. I’m trying to focus on staying healthy, so that I can progress a little bit every week in the weightroom and on the track. Instead of focusing on major goals for the end of the season, after each week of practice I set goals for the upcoming week.

How did it feel when you learned you were an All-American?

I couldn’t believe it at first because it happened so fast. We have a long season and there’s days where every muscle in my body is aching, the weather is bad, and I question why I’m doing this to myself. After earning All-American, it made all of those days worth it.

What have you been doing during the pandemic to stay ready for the season?

Initially, I didn’t have anywhere to train.  But being able to adapt and figure out how to stay active was key. I ran on a lot of icy sidewalks and did a lot of bodyweight training. I’ve been taking things one day at a time and just trying to stay motivated, knowing that better times are coming and that this isn’t forever. 

What has been your favorite part of being on the track team at UW-Whitewater?

The comradery has been my favorite part of being on the track team. There’s always someone whether it be a coach, someone from the same event group, or someone from a different event group cheering you on. Everyday I look forward to coming to practice because the team and coaches create a motivating environment. 

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