Lander Valley High School junior Gage Gose, the fastest 300-meter hurdler in Wyoming, added another event to his impressive repertoire in Eugene, Oregon this weekend at the Nike Outdoor National track meet.
The Nike event brings the best athletes in America to compete in two categories, “Elite” and “Emerging.” Gose qualified for the meet with an impressive 38.69 in the 300-meter hurdles in the Class 3-A division at the state track championships four weeks ago. Gose won “Best of the Best” with the fastest time in the meet and qualified for the Nike event in the process.
The “Elite” division had a qualifying standard of 38.5, just a few hundredths of a second off Gose’s time. Seven hurdlers in the United States meet the standard. Gose qualified in the second tier, “the Emerging” division, and elected to compete in the longer 400-meter race in Eugene.
Gose ran the open 400-meter dash sporadically over the last two seasons and anchored the Tigers state championship 4×400 meter relay team at the state meet, so the distance was familiar to him, with the notable addition of 10 flights of 36-inch high hurdles.
Gose finished second in the emerging division with a time of 54.86 seconds, and was seventh overall, beating two hurdlers in the elite division. The 400-meter hurdle race was won by Yan Vazquez of Mesa, Arizona in 51.81.
“He went for it, he had the lead with two hurdles to go,” Gages’ father and Lander head track coach Ben Gose said. “The winner from Wisconsin ran a high 47 in the open quarter at their state meet.”
The 400-meter hurdle race is considered to be the toughest sprint in track and field. It is an event Gose is likely to run as a collegiate track athlete after he completes his senior year at Lander next season.
Gose also ran the 110-meter high hurdles and advanced to the finals. In the championship heat, a rain storm made a slick running surface and Gose slipped on the first hurdle. He recovered, finishing in fifth place with a time of 14.86 seconds.
He may compete later this summer in another national championship meet in California.