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Posted 24 Feb 2001   For week ended April 09, 2000
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News about Mormons, Mormonism,
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Sent on Mormon-News: 11Apr00

Summarized by Jennifer Livingston

LDS High Jumper Seeks Olympics
(Clinger Soars Toward Olympic Dream)
Salt Lake Tribune 6Apr00 S2
By Michael C. Lewis: Salt Lake Tribune

OGDEN, UTAH -- High jumper Charles Clinger is hoping to realize his life-long dream of competing in the Olympic games in Sydney this September. Clinger, a 6' 9" Weber State junior, is already well on his way. Clearing a personal-best height of 7 feet 6 inches, his recent performance in the Stanford Invitational broke the Big Sky Conference record and ranked as the best jump in the nation this season.

Since returning from his mission to Australia a few years ago, Clinger has won several conference titles, finished third at both the US Outdoor Championships as well as the Pan-Am games in Canada, and finished fourth in the NCAA Outdoor Championships.  In order to qualify for the Olympic team, Clinger must place in the top three at the NCAA Outdoor Championships this June, and then compete in the Olympic trials in Sacramento in July.  If he can consistently clear 7 feet 7inches, he stands an excellent chance of making the team.

Clinger has set some challenging goals, hoping to be the first American to clear 8 feet.  Clearing 7 feet 6 inches in the middle of hard training is quite an accomplishment, and he believes he can do much better as he tapers his training before critical upcoming meets.  "We have some great goals in sight," commented Clinger, "but it's hard to tell other people because they think you're crazy."  Weber State coach Dan Walker agrees that Clinger means business.  "He has some high expectations for himself and he wants to get somewhere," commented Walker.


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