Douglasville race/walker makes Olympic Trials at indoor meet

Douglasville native Jordan Crawford made a qualifying time for the Olympic Trials in the race walk event.

When Jordan Crawford crossed the finished line at his collegiate indoor national championship, he was too tired to celebrate.

The Douglasville native had plenty of reasons to be in a celebratory mood after placing second at the NAIA National Indoor Track and Field Championships.

He earned his fifth All-American honors, but there was an even bigger reason to be happy.

With his time of one hour, 35.38 minutes, the Douglas County High graduate qualified for the Olympic Trials in Oregon later this summer.

“I feel good about it,” Jordan said via cellphone Sunday evening. “I’m happy that I made the standard at this age. It is pretty exciting.”

Jordan said once he crossed the finish line at the meet in South Dakota that he had little time to celebrate.

“I knew when I crossed the finish line that I had the time,” he said. “I was so tired. My legs were gone. I was just saying to myself that I won’t have to do this again until the Olympic Trials.”

Jordan is a junior at Missouri Baptist University and ranks second in the nation in the 5k race walk event.

He is preparing for the NAIA Outdoor Nationals late next month in Gulf Shores, Ala., where he looks to equal or surpass his indoor finish.

“I’ve been training for it,” Jordan said. “It is going well.”

Although Crawford is no stranger to the big stage, he realizes that the Olympic Trials is one of the ultimate accomplishments in his sport.

He is looking to use the opportunity to gain more experience in competing in those type caliber meets.

“I really hope to do well when I go out there,” Crawford said. “I’m going to train hard for it. I didn’t think this opportunity would come while I was still in college. I want to be able to compete in world championships and hopefully make the Olympics.”

The Tokyo Games are scheduled for July 23-Aug. 8. They were postponed last year because of the pandemic.

For Crawford, the postponement worked to his advantage.

“I don’t think I would have made the Trials cut time last year,” Crawford said. “This extra year has definitely helped. The extra year helped a lot of college students that were on the upward turn of their career. I think this extra year helped me get in a good position.”

There have been two previous county residents that have competed in the Olympics — Elana Meyers Taylor (bobsledding) and Kristi Castlin (track and field). Taylor has won three medals and several national championships.

Crawford is hoping to add his name to that list.

“It would be great to represent our county,” he said. “I’m looking to put my city and county on the map.”