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Christine Schmaltz qualifies for Olympic Trials

By Staff | Jul 8, 2011

Rugby is now the home of Christine (Bruins) Schmaltz who qualified to run in the U.S. Olympic Trials on June 26 in Eugene, Oregon. The 2011 NDSU alumna graduated in May, qualified for the Olympic trials in June, and moved to Rugby when she returned from Oregon.

Schmaltz from Watford City in 2006 and went to NDSU on a track and field scholarship. Running has caused her to end up in a place she dreamed about, but never expected to happen. She is pleased with her success and excited about the Olympic trials which in the off years are called U.S. Championships, again at Eugene, Oregon, next June.

Competing against both collegiate and pro athletes actually gave her a boost. She managed to run a personal record to get into the Championship competition.

“I was so excited to get there,” she laughed. “I had my own cheering section,” she added referring to her parents and her husband, Mike’s parents, and his sister, Beth.

On Sunday, June 26, she was the only college athlete in the final round. The competition had started with 30 runners. In the final round of the 800 M Run she set a new NDSU record with a time of 2:01.17. She finished in eighth place against all professional runners. Up until this competition, her claim to fame was being named “2010-11 Athlete of the Year” in both indoor and outdoor track at NDSU. Schmaltz has been both pleased and somewhat surprised at her accomplishments.

“I have always enjoyed running and being part of a team,” said Schmaltz, noting that the team keeps the athletes motivated.

“Running with NDSU was an awesome experience with many opportunities to travel and run all over the country,” said Schmaltz. “I have enjoyed running for NDSU.”

Qualifying in the U.S.A. Track Meet for the Olympic Trials is icing on the cake for Schmaltz, who didn’t expect to make it that far.

Her parents are Gary and Betty Bruins, Arnegard, and her in-laws are Nick and Jacinta Schmaltz, Rugby. She married Michael Schmaltz last year before her senior year at NDSU. They, currently, reside southwest of Rugby, where they are renting a farmstead. Michael farms with his dad.

She plans to run out in the country sometimes and possibly run Rugby’s track, as well, in preparation for the Olympic trials.

“We plan on going to Fargo through the winter months for training,” said Schmaltz. She will be training with NDSU Head Coach Ryun Godfrey on the indoor track at the college.

“Mike is really supportive and it helps me a lot to have him at the meets,” said his wife. “I wouldn’t be able to run without his support. He knows just what to say when I need it.”

After the Olympic trials next June, Schmaltz, who has a business management degree from NDSU, has set her sights on someday being a business teacher and track coach.

She is currently working on her business education degree at Valley City State University online, even while she trains for the Olympic trials. She is planning to work at Nodak Mutual Insurance in Rugby, as she did last summer.

“It’s great having Steve Mueller for a boss,” said Schmaltz. “He has been very flexible working around my training.”

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