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The Longest Stride

André Morgan and Jonathan Greenwald



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55. Ben Preisner on His Journey to The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Ben Preisner joined the cross country team in Grade 9 as a way to stay fit while playing hockey. As he progressed through High School, his relationship with running took an unexpected turn. Ben, still relatively new to the sport, represented Canada for the first time as a junior, placing 11th in the 3,000-meter steeplechase and 16th in the 2,000-meter steeplechase at the IAAF World Junior/Youth Track and Field Championships. The following year, he won the 2,000-meter steeplechase and placed 3rd in the 3,000-meter run at the OFSAA Track and Field Championships. Ben would go on to compete at the collegiate level for the University of Tulsa where he had success in various distances both indoors and out. In his senior year, Ben represented Canada at the 2019 IAAF World Cross Country Championships held in Aarhus, Denmark. After graduating with a degree in chemical engineering, Ben started to think about the next chapter of his life and didn’t see himself competing post-collegiate in the distances he ran at Tulsa. That’s when Ben discovered there was a half marathon taking place in Vancouver and, one month after graduating from university, he broke the tape at the 2019 Scotiabank Vancouver Half-Marathon. Five months later, he broke the tape at the 2019 Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Half Marathon. Looking to build on his success in road running, Ben set his sights on the marathon distance and the Canadian Olympic Standard. When his goal race, the 2020 London Marathon, was pushed back from April to October, he reached out to the organizers of The Marathon Project and pleaded his case to join the list of 50 men and 50 women invited to the exclusive event. Ben would ultimately better the Canadian Olympic Standard time in the marathon distance and, seven months later, Ben Preisner would once again represent Canada at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. To learn more about Ben, you can follow him on Instagram at: @ben.preisner Follow The Longest Stride: Instagram - @TheLongestStride Twitter - @Longest_Stride

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