Trujillo twins making a name for themselves in Gypsum and beyond
Vail, CO Colorado
GYPSUM, Ciolorado ” Although track may seem like an individual sport, the team’s support is perhaps the most motivating aspect of the track experience.
In the case of Uvaldo and Joe Trujillo, not only do they gain the motivation of the team, but also from each other as the senior twins look to run in college. Eagle Valley’s ace middle-distance runners are separating after 18 years together to run at different colleges.
Uvaldo will be running at Western State University in Gunnison, while his twin will run at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. The twins will be running identical races at college: The 400-, 800-, and 1,500-meter races for opposing Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference teams.
In addition, Joe will be running cross country for the Mountain Lions, and maybe take a step out his comfort zone and try something new, as UCCS is in short supply of runners for the steeplechase.
‘Tough as nails’
The Trujillos were both interested in running in college and approached their cross country coach Melinda Brandt to see if they would be able to run at their respective colleges. From there, Brandt contacted college coaches and got them connected with the brothers. Both continued to work to get on the team by continuing to contact the coaches well into the winter sports season.
Although the twins are not identical, their work ethic and determination are almost carbon copies of each other.
“Boy, they are as tough as nails. They don’t ever cut corners and they give it 100 percent from the start to finish in practice.” Eagle Valley track and field head coach Jeff Shroll said, “Their work ethics are in the top five percent of athletes I have ever trained, which is saying a lot because I have had a lot of good kids come through this program.”
“Uvaldo is hard-nosed and hates losing,” Joe said.
Uvaldo had similar things to say of Joe.
“He might be one of the hardest-working athletes I have ever seen. He trains day in and day out. When he wants to get himself running, he can push himself.”
Both started running track as a juniors with Uvaldo being the faster of the two, and when Eagle Valley added cross country last fall, the two blossomed.
“Cross country was really the difference for them,” coach Shroll said, “It made them amazing. It brought them to a new level of confidence and competition.”
Joe has improved to pass his brother’s times and move a mere 2 seconds away from breaking the open 800-meter school record, set in 2006, held by some guy named Everet Minett.
Both Uvaldo and Joe are a part of the 4-by-800 meter relay team which is also threatening to break that school record, a record also partially set by that Minett guy. A more distant goal that the Trujillos have in their sights is the 4-by-400 meter relay school record, which is shared in part by Wes and Everet Minett. The Trujillos have worked hard and pushed each other to the point they are at now and will continue to strive for both records.
“I give him advice on the 800,” Joe said, “I remember the very first time he was all nervous so I just told him to go out all hard and try to kick it up a notch in the second lap. I can usually hear him breathing behind me the first lap, so that just pushes me to take off in the second. I push everyone in practice, but especially Uvaldo just because he is my brother.”
“When I see Joe running fast, I know I have to get my butt moving; especially in the 4-by-800. I know that if I don’t do my best, if I don’t run hard, I am just going to let Joe and everyone down,” Uvaldo said, “Sure we motivate other people, but we also motivate each other.”
The Trujillos will meet each other many times on the track in the coming years as both schools compete at many of the same events.
“Joe should probably get his butt moving because I am going to be chasing him down,” Uvaldo said when asked if he has any advice for his brother when they go to college. “He better work his butt off because if he doesn’t, I am going to beat him.”
Sean Minett, who has a bit of a family history with Eagle Valley track, is an intern for the Vail Daily.