“Our athletes are very excited about being here."
PIC: USA athletes in action as they prepare for the IAAF World Cross Country Championship at Kololo on Thursday. (Credit: Michael Nsubuga)
They swooped in late Tuesday night but were already out in Kampala city looking for little souvenirs and other attractions early Wednesday.
That is despite a 19-hour flight from the USA to Entebbe that would have been body-breaking.
But that’s just the American spirit, a stoic mentality that will not be suppressed.
“Our athletes are very excited about being here,” Team USA manager Aretha Thurmond told New Vision.
“We had our team briefing this [Wednesday] morning and as soon as we got done they already went out and explored the city a little bit.
“We going to see if we can do some cultural excursion activity over the next few days so that the athletes can experience what it means to travel to another country.”
America will field a full team in the championships - meaning six competitors in each of the four categories - and while there is no stated pressure to win gold, there are still clear objectives in mind.
“For our junior athletes it’s about getting the exposure of competing at the highest level while for the seniors, we obviously hoping to have a good placing but we just want them to perform at their best.”
With six naturalised Kenyans part of their contingent, do not be surprised if the USA ends up somewhere on the podium.
Meanwhile, the Japanese team arrived Wednesday afternoon as the build-up to Sunday’s mega affair heats up.
The 31-strong contingent touched down at 1pm, just an hour and 10 minutes ahead of the three-party Sri Lankan team.
Two athletes from Japan arrived at 12.15pm, with one expected at 10.55pm.
The Sri Lankans having a feel of the Kololo surface on Thursday. (Credit: Michael Nsubuga)