Fast Start for Des Moines operations officer at the U.S. Cross-Country Championships

By Louis B. Wiseman 

Fast Start for Des Moines operations officer at the U.S. Cross-Country Championships

Navy LTJG Stan Linton (Photo by Armed Forces Sports)

LTJG. Stanley Linton returned to familiar territory Feb. 3 to represent the Navy in his first U.S. Cross-Country Championships at the Apalachee Regional Park in Tallahassee, Florida.  

Linton competed in Division 1 Cross-Country for Florida State University from 2014 to 2017. Linton represented the Seminoles several times on their home course at the park.

Linton, operations officer at the Des Moines MEPS, was selected to the All-Navy Cross Country Team in September. Selection to All-Navy sports teams is very competitive due to the limited number of roster spots on each team. Applications are open to all sailors currently serving in the Navy.

Linton was one of seven sailors selected to compete at the U.S Cross Country Championships.

Linton quickly established his position in the Senior Men's 10 behind the lead pack with fellow Navy teammate, Lt. Cmdr. William Christian. Linton lost contact with Christian, who went on to finish 31st overall, after the first two miles. Linton, crossed the finish line in 31 minutes 57 seconds, averaging 5:09 per mile, and placed 37th.

Linton was uneasy about his first appearance at the U.S Championship. "It was a great honor to compete on the big stage, but I've got a lot of work to do to move in the top 20," he said. "I came into the race with only six weeks of training, so I didn't have high expectations. It did give me a great indication of where my fitness is, and that's important."

Linton will next represent the Navy at the USA Half-Marathon Championships May 5. The race will be held in conjunction with the Pittsburgh Half-Marathon.

"My long term goal is to run under 66 minutes in the half-marathon. That comes out to a 5:02 mile pace for 13.1 miles. If I can accomplish that goal, I'll be in a great position to run under 2 hours and 19 minutes in the full marathon." said Linton. The 2:19:00 Linton is referring to is the minimum standard for the Olympic Marathon Trials.

"Making it to the Olympic Trials has been on my mind for three years. It's the main goal I've been working toward," he said. "I'm planning on being there in 2020."