20 Questions with Derek Storkel

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Derek Storkel: Why did you first decide to become a runner? 

Gophersports: Well, it all began in soccer. Basically my coach made me join track because he thought I was fast.

GS: What was the biggest adjustment you had to make when moving from high school cross country to running in college? 

DS: Not running like an idiot. In high school, the distances were only 5k so I could get away with sprinting the first mile. In college however, if I tried doing that in an 8k and god-forbid a 10k, I would probably die.

GS: What is the most difficult course you've ever run? 

DS: In high school cross county, we went to this tiny high school call Brookwood. The high school and course are on a hill that is a steady third of a mile up. It's pretty much hell.

GS: What is the most unusual or creative workout you've ever run at practice? 

DS: My first year at camp Plaz made us swim across Lake Belle Taine. That was interesting. It ended up not going well that year so we don't do that anymore.

DS: What team or individual performance are you most proud of? 


GS: I am most proud of our team getting 3rd at Big Ten's last year. They overcame a relatively tough season and did really well.

DS: Where is your favorite place to run? 

GS: I like Danger Ranger. The whereabouts of this run are closely guarded team secret.

GS: What is your favorite Minnesota tradition?

DS: Definitely the Perham rouser.

GS: What is the coolest part of being a member of the Minnesota cross country team? 

DS: Just knowing that I am here to wear the Maroon and Gold and knowing the truth about them rotten Badgers.

GS: What is the hardest part of being on the Minnesota cross country team? 

DS: It definitely would have to be wearing 10 pounds of clothing in the winter just to stay warm.

GS: What advice would you give a new runner? 

GS: Listen to your body and believe in the program. The first year here is slow. But after that you will become a totally new runner.

GS: What have you learned from cross country that has helped you in other aspects of your life?

DS: If you don't put in the hard work, you aren't going to see any results. Remains true for everything.

GS: Do you have a favorite sports movie? 

DS: Happy Gilmore. Nothing better.

GS: Where is your favorite place to eat on campus?

DS: Annie's for sure. As long as we are eating indoors.

GS: What are you listening to on your iPod right now?.

DS: Katy Perry! I am a big Katy Perry guy.

GS: Do you have any race-day superstitions? 

DS: Nope, I just do what I think I need to do.

GS:  What are your goals for this season?

DS: I would like to help make sure that our team sticks together through thick and thin. Without great chemistry, it can be hard to support your teammates when they need it most.

 GS: What is your favorite sport outside of cross-country or track and field?

DS: Tetherball, especially at Lake Belle Taine. Otherwise turtle-hunting (turtles remain unharmed).

 GS: What motivates you to run and compete?

DS: To see my body progress to higher levels than I ever thought it could.

GS: What is one talent or skill you have outside of running? 

DS: I can be a pretty artist person when I feel like it, otherwise I am an avid angler.

GS: If you had the choice to travel either forward or backward in time, which would you choose? Why?

DS: I would travel back in time to meet Abraham Lincoln. I think he would have a been a cool guy to hang out with.

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