For the fourth year in a row, Sydney Thorvaldson of Rawlins has been named the Gatorade Girls Cross Country Runner of the Year for Wyoming.
A four-time Class 3A state champ, Thorvaldson set the all-class state record with a time of 16 minutes, 59.6 seconds in the 3A state meet on Oct. 23, 2020 at the ValleyView Golf Course in Afton.
The state championship came after she won the Heritage Distance Classic in Littleton, Colorado, with a time of 16:19.00, which still stands as the fastest 5K for a high school girl in the nation this year. She also won the race last year as well as winning the Nike Cross Northwest Regionals last November in Boise, Idaho. Her time of 16:50.6 was the fastest ever for a high school girl in Idaho.
After winning state, Thorvaldson continued to impress on the national stage. The Arkansas signee shattered the course record to win the XC Town USA Meet of Champions on Nov. 15, 2020 at Terre Haute, Indiana, with a time of 16:38.3. Her time topped the previous course record by 11 seconds. Three weeks later, Thorvaldson raced to a first-place finish at the High School Cross Country National Invite in Lubbock, Texas, with a time of 16:23.85.
Thursday’s Gatorade award is the sixth overall for Thorvaldson, who has won the past two outdoor track & field awards for Wyoming. She is now a finalist for the Gatorade Girls National Cross Country Runner of the Year.
Thorvaldson also excels in the classroom at Rawlins High School, where she has maintained a 4.0 GPA and is a member of the student council and the National Honor Society.
The boys cross country runner of the year will be announced on April 15. Star Valley senior Peter Visser has won the state award the past two years.