University of South Florida hurdler David Aristil surprised a lot of people last season by taking home the title in the 400-meter hurdles at the Big East Outdoor Championships, by placing fifth at the NCAA Championships and by becoming an All-American as a sophomore. This season, the junior hurdler looks to defend his title as Big East Champion as well as improve his previous fifth place finish at the NCAA Championships.
Aristil had a successful indoor season this year, but suffered a leg injury at the beginning of the outdoor season and has only been able to run a few outdoor meets.
“My goals for the season have been a little bit altered because of a recent injury, but I should be back in effect very soon,” Aristil said. “God willing, I am planning on running sub 14 in the 110 hurdles and a sub 50 in the 400 hurdles. I still plan on maintaining my 400 hurdle title, and attempt to win the 110 hurdles as well, we’ll see how that goes when the time comes.”
In his first meet back at the Texas Relays, Aristil struggled, posting a time of 55.20 (well above his personal best of 50.13) and finishing 41st, failing to reach the final.
However, this Friday at the Sea Ray Relays in Tennessee, Aristil looked like his old self by finishing first with a time of 51.13. His time is 11th best in the nation this year and the best by any athlete in the Big East.
Aristil looks to be in good shape with just a little over two weeks left before the Big East Outdoor Championships in Philadelphia, Pa.
“The strategy is to build off each practice as if it were a race. I will be working on the various areas I need to improve on during the race in practice,” Aristil said.
Holding his title as Big East Champion will be no easy feat as Aristil is no longer an unknown competitor among other athletes in the Big East and across the country.