Duke's Chyler Turner Turns Heads in 100h at USA U20; 13.36!


        Shreveport's Chyler Turner ended her first year as a Duke Blue Devil on a high note at the USA U20 Championships in Eugene, Oregon. Turner, a 2021 graduate from Booker T. Washington finished third in the 100 hurdles with a huge personal record of 13.36.

        Turner arrived back Durham at 1 am this morning, and is catching up on some well-deserved rest after back-to-back trips to historic Hayward Field.

        On her first trip to Oregon, Turner joined her Duke University team as a member of the womens' 400 meter relay competing at the NCAA Championships.

        "Having my team with me helped with the pressure," Turner said. "It was beyond crazy."

        The relay team came into the meet seeded last, but competed well, finishing at No. 16, and running the second fastest time in Duke University history.

        When Turner anchored the team at the NCAA Championships, it was only her third time to run it in a meet this season.

       "A teammate went down with an achilles injury toward the end of the year," Turner said. "Coach said 'Chyler, you're our next best option,' so I said 'Alright.'"

       This latest trip to Eugene, Turner traveled out to Oregon by herself for the USA U20 Championships.

       "It was great to be out there with athletes I've looked up to," Turner said. "I was just honored and blessed to be there. Looking around and realizing that I was representing Duke University, it was really an awe moment."

       As her 100 hurdle race started, Turner could tell that her start, a part of the race she commonly has problems with, was better than normal and that she was out in front of the competition.

      "It seemed like I just kept getting faster as the race progressed," Turner said. "I knew I had run fast, but I never imagined that it would be 13.36 until it came up on the board."

      While improving from 13.56, Turner's previous all-time best, to 13.36 may not seem like a big deal to the average fan, ask any sprinter or coach. It's a big deal.

      Turner's coach, Shawn Wilbourn, reacted to her performance accordingly.

      "He was jumping around like a crazy person," Turner said.

      Turner is an alternate for USA's U20 National Team in the World U20 Championships which will take place in Santiago de Cali, Columbia beginning August 1st. 

      From her preparation, Turner knew that a big race was coming.

      "I had the feeling in practice as I kept up with the seniors that a great race was coming," Turner said. "My coach told me that if I have to push the hurdle down, just do it."

      Turner listened, and has the bruises on the knee of her trail leg to prove it.

      "Usually, I run a clean race," Turner said. "Normally, I'll hit one hurdle, but not this time. I ran a greedy race."

      This last lesson was just one of many Turner has learned in her first year of college. The toughest lesson was the first, and it wasn't in a classroom.

      "Time management," Turner said. "I definitely struggled my first couple of weeks. I'm used to going to school, going to practice,and going home.Here, it was go to meetings, go to practice, go to weights, go to school, go to the dorm, do homework. It took me a while to manage it all and make sure I was eating and sleeping."

       Academically, Turner, who is a visual meida studies and computer science double major, says that BTW served her well.

       "I'm not going to say the academics here are easy, but BTW prepared me well for my academics," Turner said. "But I will say that going to class in college at noon is more fun than waking up and going to high school at 8:30am."   

        The main lesson Turner has learned during her freshmen year at Duke?  Patience.

        "In high school, and even now, I put high expecations on myself," Turner said. "When things didn't go my way in high school I would get down on myself and had a lot of negative self talk. I'm learning to be patient, and I'm learning how to be kind to myself when I don't meet expectations."

        "Overall, it has been a phenomenal first year at Duke, and I can't wait to see what I can do next year."