The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

Q&A | Iowa fourth-year mid-distance runner Clare Pitcher talks Drake Relays

Fresh off the Drake Relays, Pitcher discussed being “more than just an athlete.”
Jenna Galligan
Iowa mid distance runner Clare Pitcher leads a pack with teammate Alli Bookin-Nosbisch close behind in the 800m run premier during the second day of the Larry Wieczorek Invitational on Saturday, Jan. 23, 2021 at the University of Iowa Recreation Building. Pitcher and Bookin-Nosbisch finished sixth (2:12.74) and seventh (2:12.90), respectively. Iowa’s Mallory King won the race with a time of 2:06.00. Due to coronavirus restrictions, the Hawkeyes could only host Big Ten teams. Iowa men took first, scoring 189, and women finished third with 104 among Minnesota, Wisconsin, Nebraska, and Illinois.

The Daily Iowan: What is the most rewarding aspect of Track and Field?

Clare Pitcher: Getting to see all the hard work pay off. We are in season all year, so it can be taxing on our bodies. Once we are in season and everything comes together, it feels worth it.

What does it mean to you when you see your teammates succeed?

I always say I get more excited for other people’s accomplishments than my own. If I do well, I think it’s good, but I will always expect more of myself. A win for anyone on the team is a win for the Hawkeyes. And as a female athlete, a win for a female athlete is a win for all of us.

How would your teammates describe you?

At this point in my career, they would describe me as a leader. It’s my responsibility to take the younger girls under my wing. Also having a little bit of a bigger personality, I think people are drawn to that and see me as a leader on the team.

Other than track, what do you like to do in your free time?

I don’t have a lot of free time, but I like hanging out with my teammates. I don’t ever get sick of them.

What is the best piece of advice you have received?

One thing that I was told was to not take your highs too high and your lows too low. Not every day is going to be a win, but consistency pays off. It’s like the saying “every grain of sand makes a sandcastle.” 

What’s a fun fact not many people know about you?

I have a pretty big family. I’m one of nine kids. All of my sisters’ names start with Mary, so my name is actually Mary Clare.

Who inspires you?

Being at the University of Iowa, the children at the Children’s Hospital inspire me. I have to drive past the hospital every day on my way to practice, and it always puts things into perspective.

How do you hope to inspire others?

I just want to keep reiterating to the girls on the team that, at the end of the day, we are more than just athletes. That took a long time for me to realize, but I realized that when I put time and energy into other aspects of my life, I started to enjoy my sport even more.

More to Discover
About the Contributors
Mia Boulton
Mia Boulton, Sports Reporter
Mia Boulton is a freshman at the University of Iowa majoring in Journalism & Mass Communication, as well as exploring a possible double major in Sports Media. She works at the Daily Iowan as a sports reporter. Outside of the Daily Iowan, Mia has been a photographer for her hometown newspaper, The Record.
Jenna Galligan
Jenna Galligan, Films Editor/Documentary Director
Jenna Galligan is the Films Editor and Documentary Director at The Daily Iowan. She is a senior at the University of Iowa majoring in journalism and cinema with a minor in anthropology. This is her fourth year in the visuals department at the DI.