Cross-country is what first gave Daniel the running bug.
Daniel started running cross-country at Harrison Park in Kindergarten, in 2015. Grand Rapids Public Schools operate elementary athletics thanks to public support through GR8 Sports Great Kids and the Grand Rapids Student Advancement Foundation.
He medaled in his first race, a top 30 finish in the Invitational 400m. He only ran two races that first year as the school started the season late.
In his second season as a promoted 2nd grader he achieved similar placings to his Kindergarten year, improving his first race time by 46 seconds by the end of the season. He again medaled in the Invitational. All this at twice the distance to last year, and a year or two younger than pretty much everyone in his races.
His third season of cross-country saw him finally competing with his peers again, running with 2nd graders as well as 3rds. After an 11th place in the first race he really pushed himself and came in 2nd, 4th and finally 3rd in his remaining races in the season.
His fourth season of cross-country saw him step up to some races over 1600 meters (as he was a 3rd grader by age running in 4th/5th grade races), and switched to C.A. Frost for his final year of elementary school. He placed 3rd, 4th and 5th in the 800m races, and a respectable 9th in the 1600m invitational.
In 2019 he will switch to City Middle/High, a school with a very strong XC culture, for his first middle school runs. He will run 2500m at midweek GRPS meets at Northeast field and 3200m at weekend meets open to non-GRPS schools.