Sports

‘Golden’ opportunity for Lindgren

Bryan Lindgren qualifies in more ways than one as a stereotypical California surfer boy.

The King’s West sophomore was born in California, has bleached blond hair that hangs over his ears and likes spending summer afternoons on the water wakeboarding.

But he also is a burgeoning star on his school’s track squad, and even though he is only 15 years old, he has earned his coach’s respect as one of the team’s leaders.

“He’s a great human being,” said coach Dan Dittmer about Lindgren, who missed the Class B State tournament in the hurdles last year by .5 seconds qualifying time.

He wishes others were as dedicated to their craft as Lindgren.

“He works hard, he listens well, he accepts criticism and he always wants to improve,” Dittmer said.

Dittmer started the track program two years ago at King’s West and has 46 members this season.

When Lindgren isn’t practicing his form over the hurdles, he is tutoring six or seven freshman and other interested athletes in proper technique.

“I can watch how they do it and how they stumble, which helps me understand what I am doing wrong too,” he said.

Lindgren’s unique pre-meet routine includes — in accordance with his geographical roots — a little skateboarding. He’s good and might try to get a sponsorship at a local skate shop. He can pull off kick-flip tricks over flights of stairs.

Flying through the air with the concrete below him gets his heart racing. Then he carries that rush to the starting line.

“I get myself stoked about what I need to do,” he said. “It’s a lot about self confidence.”

This year, Lindgren will participate in the 300- and 110-meter hurdles.

The 110 is what he is focused on when he’s not in the classroom.

Lindgren has a 3.1 grade-point average and considers biology his favorite class.

“It is just interesting how everything works,” he said.

Lindren doesn’t know what he wants to study in college, but said he may want to return to the Golden State for it.

This year, his goal is to get his form down and make it to the state tournament.

Last year, he had a lead until the seventh of 10 hurdles before losing his lead toward the finish.

“The guy that beat me on the seventh graduated,” he said.

A departure that may result in Lindgren’s golden locks crossing the finish line in first this year.

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