Photo courtesy of: Michael Rohl

(WENY) - A former Mansfield, Pennsylvania resident competed in the 2024 Olympic trials in Eugene, Oregon Saturday morning.

Originally from Madison, Wisconsin, Michelle Rohl lived in Mansfield for the last 23 years, moving away just last week with her husband. She is a track athlete who competes in the 20k (12.42 miles) race walk event.

Rohl competed in the Olympic trials for the first time in 20 years, at the age of 58. This was her fourth trials. She qualified for the 1992 summer games in Barcelona where she placed 20th. In 1996 she went to the Atlanta games, placing 13th, and qualified for the 2000 Sydney, Australia Olympics where she finished in 17th place.

To get to the trials, Rohl had to qualify in a prior race--she finished the race in the top spot. In the trials on Saturday, Rohl placed third with a race time of 1:42:27. Normally placing in the top three spots would mean you qualify for the team but the Olympic standard time for the 20k race walk is 1:29:20. Rohl will not be heading to Paris next month but she told us, getting to the games wasn't the reason why she wanted to go back one more time. 

"I didn't expect to make the Olympic team. I know that from back in 2000 when I qualified for my last Olympics, the standard has gotten faster and I obviously haven't gotten faster in the last 20 years", said Rohl. "Just with any race or any competition I just want to challenge myself to do the best that I can."

Now a grandmother, Rohl reflected on what point she was in her life back in 2000, and where she is now.

"My little grandson Peter was cheering me on today", said Rohl. "Having a baby and making an Olympic team was a huge accomplishment for me. It's kind of cool to come back around now and be third place again, I was third place in my first Olympic trials when I made the team and had a baby and now I'm third place with a little grand baby."

Rohl isn't done racing yet. She told us she is set to compete in many Masters Track and Field meets in the future.