Runner With Cerebral Palsy Dreams of Becoming an Oregon Duck

Justin Gallegos doesn’t let anything get in the way of his goals—not even cerebral palsy. So when he says he wants to attend the University of Oregon despite out-of-state tuition costs, he's bound to find a way.

FloTrack first met Gallegos at the 2015 Woodbridge Invitational when he set a massive personal best on the 5K cross country course and inspired the running community along the way. 



The senior from Hart Senior High School in Newhall, California, joined the cross country and track teams as a freshman, and has impacted the programs in a big way. Doug Williams of ESPN spoke to Gallegos’ father Brent, who noted his son’s perseverance and the positive affect he’s had on his teammates. 

“He fell quite a bit in the first week or so, to the point where I started wondering if it was going to work out,” Brent said. 

Cerebral palsy is a congenital condition that affects motor skills and movement, and typically makes physical activities such as running extremely difficult or nearly impossible.

“He never once said, ‘I don’t want to do this,’ or ‘I need a break,’ or ‘I need some time off.' If he got hurt that day, nine out of 10 times he would just pick himself up and start running again even though his knees were bleeding.”

Since those early days, Gallegos has posted personal bests of 3:25.98 in the 800m and 7:07.95 in the 1600m with improvements every year.  

“I can be a true athlete,” Gallagos said in the YouTube video, “No Such Thing As a Disability,” created by classmate Luke Peckham. “I can be what people out there don’t think a disabled person can be, and that spark motivates me.” 



Gallegos has dreamed of becoming an Oregon Duck for many years, and was accepted last fall. Unfortunately, the out-of-state tuition to attend Oregon is out of his family’s price range. 

With the hope of making his college dream a reality, Gallegos set up a Go Fund Me campaign to help raise money for his family to afford his college tuition. 

“If I am able to attend the University of Oregon, I plan to study human physiology to one day become an athletic trainer and work with other disabled athletes,” Gallegos wrote in the post. 

“The University of Oregon has an excellent running club team that I plan on training with, in the pursuit of one day becoming a U.S. Paralympian,” he added. 

If you feel inclined, visit the page and donate to Gallegos’ “University of Oregon Fund.”

WATCH LIVE: 2019 Foot Locker Nationals

Watch the 2019 Foot Locker National XC Championships.

How Foot Locker All-Americans Fare In The NCAA

The top 15 finishers in Saturday’s Foot Locker National Cross Country Championships will have the title of high school “All-American” bestowed upon them. Despite Nike Cross Nationals' growth weakening the San Diego race in recent years, Foot Locker All-Americans still represent the elite of the elite high school prospects. Every NCAA coach in the country wants a runner who thrives at the most prestigious prep cross country race in the world.

Unlock this article, live events, and more with a subscription!

Get Started

Already a subscriber? Log In

The Road Trip That Brought Vaporflys To A Cross Country Meet

The phone rang before Luc Larson even had a chance to turn on the lights. Larson, the general manager of the Heartbreak Hill Running Company store in Chicago, has a rule against answering calls before the store is open. But a few minutes before 11 A.M. on November 14th, he picked up. 

Who Draws The Best Runners? Foot Locker or NXN?

The Foot Locker National XC Championships have been around since 1979 (41 years) whereas the Nike Cross Nationals have only been around since 2004 (16 years). With two high school national cross country championships, the question remains which championship is more prestigious? Foot Locker has the legacy factor, however NXN has been able to draw not just the top teams in the nation, but top individuals on both the girls and boys side in recent years.

Unlock this article, live events, and more with a subscription!

Get Started

Already a subscriber? Log In

Debuting LIVE At 7PM CT: 'NAU: Running With The Boys,' Ep. 2

null

FULL EPISODE | SNEAK PEEK CLIP

Hundreds Of Nike Employees Protest Against Alberto Salazar

Hundreds of Nike employees on Monday demonstrated on the company’s campus in Beaverton, Oregon, against a rededication of the Alberto Salazar Building, according to a report by Willamette Week.

Athing Mu Commits To Texas A&M

Article courtesy of MileSplit. Check out their full recruiting coverage.

Unlock this article, live events, and more with a subscription!

Get Started

Already a subscriber? Log In

How NCAA Athletes Fared At The 2019 European XC Championships

The NCAA was well-represented on Sunday at the 2019 SPAR European Cross Country Championships in Lisbon, Portugal. Here is where every U.S.-based collegiate athlete finished in their respective races:

WADA Bans Russia For Four Years

The World Anti-Doping Agency announced on Monday that Russia has been banned from international sport for four years, including the 2020 Olympics and 2022 World Cup.

Edward Cheserek Three-Peats At Kalakaua Merrie Mile

(c) 2019 Race Results Weekly, all rights reserved