Over the last two years, not many high-level distance races in Class 2A have been run without Forest City’s Joey Hovinga. The Forest City senior reached another goal he’s been dreaming about on Friday in Hampton when he broke Forest City’s 3200-meter record.
Hovinga says he’s known he could reach the record and decided that was the best meet to put the pedal to the metal and go for it.
The weather hasn’t been good all spring for outdoor activities; track meets have been canceled nearly weekly since the start of the season. Joey doesn’t care what the weather is doing. He says he’s trained in all types and doesn’t use that as an excuse when running.
Hovinga rushed onto the 2A distance scene with a 14th place finish as a junior at the state cross country meet. He followed that up with his first-ever trip to the state track and field meet last May, where he finished 7th in the 3200m. This past fall, Joey was ranked in the top-10 throughout the season and also finished 7th at the state cross country meet.
Even before the record-breaking time of 9:35.12 last week, Hovinga has been in the top-5 of Class 2A 3200-meter runners. All of which are currently chasing Des Moines Christain teammates Carson Houg and Aaron Fynaardt, who laid down season-best times at the Drake Relays last week to improve their stranglehold on the rest of the class. Fynaardt – a junior – won the cross country championship in the fall, while Hough – a senior – finished fourth. Though he’s got conference and state qualifying on his mind first, Hovinga is looking forward to racing the teammates at state.
The conference meet will take place on Thursday in Forest City, where Hovinga hasn’t raced on a track much. He’s looking forward to running in front of the home crowd for a chance at a conference crown.
KIOW will have full coverage from Forest City on Thursday during the Co-Ed Top of Iowa Conference track meet.