Payton Wensel will run at Iowa

Track and field: Linn-Mar commits Tuesday, signs Wednesday

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MARION — Payton Wensel wants to be a cop someday.

Good luck trying to outrun her.

Tuesday night, the Linn-Mar girls’ track and field ace committed to the University of Iowa. And Wednesday morning, she signed a national letter of intent.

“My parents have been a huge part of my track success, and I realized I’m not ready for that to change,” Wensel told The Gazette late Tuesday. “I want them to be involved in my college career, and I want them to be close.”

A five-time state champion (including three in the 400 meters), Wensel chose Iowa over Kent State and Oklahoma State.

“I like Coach (Joey) Woody,” Wensel said. “His training ideas are similar to those of my dad (Marek Wensel). He has a plan for me. I’ll be training to be a 400-meter hurdler, and I’ll probably run some 400s.”

She will major in criminal justice at Iowa.

Wensel has owned the 4A 400 since she joined the Linn-Mar program, winning that race at state in 55.96, 55.87 and 54.84, the last of which ranks No. 6 all-time in Iowa. She also ran on the state-champion 3,200-meter relay and distance medley relay as a freshman.

Last spring, she anchored the sprint medley relay to a Drake Relays title and also won the 400 hurdles at Drake.

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Watch: Payton Wensel's 2017 400 state title

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