Beamer cross country runner heading Down Under

Todd Beamer High School junior Jacob Wittman is hoping to run halfway across the world, literally.

Wittman, a cross country runner for the Titans, has been invited by Down Under International Games to compete for the Washington state team in Australia.

“It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” Wittman said.

Wittman was nominated by his head coach at Beamer, Scott Haines, to make the trip to Australia and compete in a pair of cross country meets. The first will be an All-American meet with about 300 athletes from the United States and the second will be an international meet with close to 1,000 kids competing.

Wittman was one of the top runners for Beamer during his junior season last fall. He finished 20th at the South Puget Sound League Sub-District Meet and was 81st at the West Central District Meet.

DownUnder Sports also features athletes in golf, basketball, wrestling, football, volleyball, swimming, track and field and cheerleading. The team will travel from Australia to Hawaii once the cross country competition concludes, and spend three days there before flying home.

With a spot on the Washington team secured, Wittman’s attention now turns raising the money needed for the trip. The cost is approximately $4,500 and will take place July 11-22.

“I have sent out a bunch of sponsor letters to a bunch of people,” Wittman said. “This trip would be a huge chance and I do not want to see it pass by due to a lack of funds. Whatever I don’t raise will come out of my pocket.”

To donate to Wittman, make checks out to International Sports Specialists, Inc. and send them to 34919 26th Ct. SW, Federal Way, Wash. 98023. You can also email Wittman at for more information.

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