November 18, 2012
By Michael Doyle
Canadian runner Mo Ahmed secured his fourth straight All-American season with the Wisconsin Badgers on Saturday when he placed 8th overall at the cross-country championships in Louisville.
The St. Catherine’s, Ont. native battled a series of in-race set backs, including a side stitch and what his coach described as a hip problem to crack the top ten in the prestigious American collegiate race.
Ahmed represented Canada at the London Games this past summer in the 10,000m, but since then has raced sparingly for his varsity team. He won a regional event leading up to the NCAA’s, but wasn’t certain about his outcome in Louisville. “I don’t know what emotions I feel right now,: Ahmed told reporters after his race. “I’m kind of still confused. I don’t know if I feel super disappointed, or if I feel happy.”
The raising Canadian star is just one of a handful of University of Wisconsin runners to garner All-American status four times. Ahmed has also improved his placing at the NCAA cross-country championship each year he has competed. In 2009, he placed 30th, then 12th in 2010 and ninth last year.
Texas Tech’s Kennedy Kithuku won the men’s race by creating and maintaining a substantial lead over the field, setting a course record in the process. Iowa State’s Betsy Saina won the women’s race by less than one second.
Ahmed will next travel to Vancouver to compete in the Canadian cross-country championships. He will be a top contender for the win, going head-to-head with fellow Olympian Cam Levins.