Derek Mandell, a 2008 graduate of UP, found out Monday night that he has been selected by his native Guam to compete in the 1500 meters at the Beijing Olympic Games! Hopefully the portlandpilots.com will put up a release soon.
The Angel of Death
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Location : Portland, OR
Registration date : 2008-02-03
Here's the official release from UP... what an awesome opportunity for him!:
Sunday was a good day for University of Portland runner Derek Mandell. After going through graduation and receiving his degree in organizational communication, Mandell received a phone call from the President of the Guam Track and Field Association. He was selected as the country’s lone track representative for the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing.
"I am thrilled for Derek,” Portland track coach Rob Conner said. “It is truly a once in a lifetime opportunity. I can't wait to see him as part of the opening ceremonies on television."
Mandell has been one of the top distance runners in Guam history and put his name on the international map by winning four Gold Medals at the 2006 Micronesian Games. He won the 10,000-meter, 5,000-meter, 1,500-meter and 800-meter runs. The four medals topped all performers at the event which is held every four years and features athletes from Micronesia, the Marshall Islands, Kiribati, Nauru, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas.
He is expected to compete in either the 800 or 1,500-meter run this summer.
In preparation for the Olympic Games, Mandell will represent Guam at the Oceania Area Championships and Grand Prix Series, scheduled for June 21-28 in the Northern Mariana Islands prior to traveling to China. The Olympics opening ceremony is scheduled for Friday, August 8, while the track and field competition is set for August 15-24.
“He told the team on Monday and they were stoked,” Conner added. “Guam gets to send one representative in track and I am glad it is Derek because he is so proud of his heritage.”
Last summer, Mandell worked in the Guam embassy in Washington D.C. in a summer internship position. Now he will proudly represent his country on the biggest stage in sports.
Conner was not surprised by the decision, but was thrilled with the opportunity in front of his latest protégé.
“He has worked extremely hard for the last three years hoping to get this opportunity. It will be fun to see him compete against the best the world has to offer.”
- Draft Pick
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Age : 35
Location : Portland, OR
Registration date : 2007-06-07
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