Idaho’s Flying Finn: Idaho Distance Project welcomes Minttu Hukka
The Idaho Distance Project is excited to announce the addition of Minttu Hukka to the team’s elite roster. Hukka finished competing for the University of Tennessee this spring, where she set the school record in the steeplechase. As a undergraduate studying kinesiology at Boise State University, Minttu was the 2016 Mountain West conference indoor 5000m champion and was a scoring member of the Bronco women’s team that placed 6th at NCAA Cross Country Nationals.
The Idaho Distance Project is happy that Minttu wanted to retain her Idaho connection post collegiately.
“I had heard good things about the team and I was looking for a post-collegiate group to join after exhausting my NCAA eligibility last spring,” said Hukka, who will be spending one more year in Knoxville, TN, to finish her Master’s degree before she moves back to Boise. “I realized I missed the environment and people in Boise. I decided to visit Kameron and the group and it immediately felt like a great fit.”
“Minttu has a passion for running that is rare in this sport, that’s what first made me exited to start working with her,” stated Coach Kameron Ulmer. “She brings so much joy and a ton of energy to the team aspect.”
Minttu is a native of Kotka, Finland, and as such channels the legacy of such runners as Paavo Nurmi and Lasse Viren. She last represented Finland internationally at the 2014 World Junior Championships in Eugene and hopes to compete for her country at next summer’s European Championships in Paris.
“I love how Kameron has the ability to build the athlete up both mentally and physically— after a rough last few years in college, I thought I could never keep running at a high level… but after a couple months [with IDP], I am more excited about running and trust the process and my ability to qualify for championships,” said Hukka.
She next competes THIS WEEK at the Finnish National Championships in the 10,000m.
Fun Fact: Minttu has the widest range of funny socks and scrunchies for every occasion.
Instagram — @minttuhukka
Twitter — @minttuhukka
5,000 — 16:09
1,500 — 4:28.76
3000m Steeple — 9:56.51
15k — 53:40
The Idaho Distance Project was established in 2018 as a post collegiate and professional team dedicated to helping athletes achieve their goals and qualify for national teams. The program has thus far qualified four athletes for the 2020 U.S. Olympic Trials marathon in Atlanta and has produced the the U.S. and Canadian women’s marathon champions. IDP is made possible by the support of track fans across the country and especially Rock and Armor Physical Therapy, and is a USATF member club.