May 13, 2001
EUGENE, Ore.--The University of Washington gained another guaranteed spot at the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships, Saturday evening, as sophomore Gillian Palmer surpassed the automatic qualifying standard in the 5000-meter run at the Oregon Twilight meet.
Palmer (Helensburgh, Scotland) finished eighth in the 5,000 meters at the Twilight meet with a time of 16:10.94. The time was nearly 12 seconds faster than her previous season-best mark (16:22.91), a provisional qualifying mark recorded at the Mt. SAC Relays in Walnut, Calif., April 20. Palmer's personal best 5000m mark is a 15:56.
A transfer from Edinburgh University in Scotland, Palmer is only in her second year of competitive running. Despite her inexperience, she finished fourth in the 5,000m at the 2000 United Kingdom Olympic Trials. Before suffering a stress fracture in her foot to cut short her season, Palmer helped lead the 2000 Washington cross country team to the NCAA Championships.
Palmer joins teammate Anna Aoki (Vancouver, Wash.) as an automatic qualifier in the 5000. Aoki, along with sophomore Kate Bradshaw (Issaquah, Wash.), is also an automatic qualifier in the 10,000 meters.
A total of 10 Huskies, including both men and women, have reached either provisional or automatic qualifying standards for the 2001 NCAA Championships, which take place May 30-June 2 in Eugene, Ore.
Full results from the Oregon Twilight meet are available on www.goducks.com.
Next up for Palmer and the rest of the Huskies is the Pac-10 Championship meet May 19-20 in Berkeley, Calif.