Two Oklahoma City women qualified for the Marathon Olympic Trials. They'll be heading to Atlanta this week with the event taking place on Saturday. Catherine Lisle and Kristen Radcliffe recently competed in the California International Marathon. They ran that race together and both found out they'd be heading to Atlanta for what they both call a dream opportunity.
Almost 500 women have been invited to Atlanta to compete in the Trials. Of those, only 4 are from Oklahoma and Kristen and Catherine are the only two from Oklahoma City. Catherine said she found out during her last marathon and couldn't hold back her emotions.
“I think just the excitement that swelled up in me was so overwhelming that I kind of had to fight back emotion for the rest of the race,” said Lisle.
Both have been running for a long time now and to get here wasn't easy. To qualify, you must run a marathon time of at least 2 hour and 45 minutes or a half marathon time of 1 hour and 13 minutes. A goal both have been preparing hard for.
“When I rounded the corner and looked at my watch and saw that I was going to make it,” said Ratcliffe. “Your heart just kind of explodes and you're so excited.”
But they said one of the most exciting parts is getting to represent their home state.
“Just thankful that it gets to happen, and we get to be a part of it and the other girls that are coming have also won the Oklahoma City Marathon in the past,” said Ratcliffe. “So, it's fun to have that in common and just that we love our state.”
Of the hundreds of runners qualifying this weekend, only 3 men and 3 women will make it to Japan for the 2020 Summer Olympics. Though they would both be honored, they want to enjoy this experience.
“To just take that experience and do the very best I can and make sure I put it all out there and just represent Oklahoma well and do the best that I can,” said Radcliffe.