Birthday: June 12, 1971
Current Residence : Chula Vista, CA
Hometown: Eugene OR
College: Carleton '93
20 km - 1:26:36
50 km - 3:56:33
Like many race walkers, Philip Dunn happened upon the sport by accident. When Dunn was 10 years old he entered the Junior Olympics 1500 meter run. Later he saw on the schedule the 1500 meter race walk. Young Dunn was confused. It was the same distance he had just run; why would they be having another run? So, his dad explained and showed him what little he knew about race walking. Dunn jumped into the race and won it. As a 10 year old, he thought that was cool. Dunn was encouraged to participate in the state meet, and came in 3rd. His immediate success was not enough to pull Dunn from running, but he added race walking to his routine.
Dunn stepped up to the regional, and then eventually went to Nationals in Provo, Utah, where he finished 2nd to another walker from Oregon. In Dunn's third and fourth years at the Junior Olympics, he achieved the gold.
In 1989 Dunn graduated to the next level and competed in the Junior Nationals. His second year at the Junior Nationals he placed second behind Tim Seaman. This didn't sit well with Dunn, motivating him to push for a qualifying time for the World Junior Championships, something neither Seaman nor Dunn had accomplished previously. After a few attempts Dunn qualified for the World Juniors, walking a 44:38, well under the 45:00 time that was required. Still on a high from qualifying, He raced a few days later and set an American Junior 5K record with a time of 21:14. Dunn raced in the World Juniors in Bulgaria, finishing 16th in a field that included three future Senior world champions.
Dunn entered college in 1989 and while he never really stopped thinking about race walking, he didn't do much walking until he entered a study abroad program in Dublin, Ireland. He competed in a few races there, but his focus was on running track and cross country while in college. Dunn ran a 4:00 1500M, and was a member of a Div III cross country team that qualified for the Nationals.
By the summer of 1993, Dunn's interest in race walking reemerged when he moved to Lake Placid to train with Bob Ryan. Dunn was part of a small group of up and coming race walkers that included the likes of Andrew Herman, Will Van Axen, Melissa Baker, Yariv Pomeranz, and Elliot Taub. Claiming he would never walk a 50K, Dunn was coerced when on the way to Lake Placid he and Hermann were invited to compete in the 50K at the U.S. Olympic Festival. They headed for San Antonio and Dunn finished in a time of 4:52 with Hermann just a few minutes back.
Dunn had enough of the 50K and switched back to training for the 20K. He figured he would give race walking his all for one year, achieving a 4th place finish at the Nationals in Knoxville. With the Olympics coming up in 1996, Dunn extended his commitment and followed his coach to Virginia. While not qualifying for the Olympics, he finished a respectable 6th place at the Trials.
In 1997 he regrouped, moving out to the ARCO Olympic Training Center to train for the 2000 Trials. On a steady trajectory upward on the American and world race walking scene, Dunn broke through in 2000 by making his first Olympic team in the 50 km. When Dunn is asked how he qualified for the Olympic Team, he replies, "Count to 7." This is because in the 4-hour race to quality for the team, he snuck under the standard by only 7 seconds.
Since then he has steadily improved, winning the 2001 U.S. 50km title and finishing as the top U.S. walker at the 2002 World Cup with a personal best of 3:56:13. He ended the season with his first-ever #1 U.S. ranking.
Dunn’s family is a source of inspiration and support. His twin brother, Malcom, also walked and ran competitively, and is now a cross country and track coach. His mother competes in marathons and his father races sailboats. Dunn married his college sweetheart, Liz Flynn, on September 22, 2001 in Alexandria, Va. Together they enjoy traveling, kayaking, hiking, snorkeling, reading and visits to the San Diego Zoo. Dunn graduated cum laude and received his B.A. degree in English from Carleton in 1993.
2003 7th - 1:28:17.4 2002 4th - 1:29:00 2001 5th - 1:32:22 2000 7th - 1:30:55 1999 8th - 1:29:13 1998 9th - 1:30:34 1997 6th - 1:26:36 1996 6th - 1:27:05 1995 4th - 1:28:18 1994 4th - 1:30:31
2003 2nd - 4:15:01 2002 1st - 3:56:13 2001 2nd - 3:56:33 2000 2nd - 4:03:05 1999 3rd - 3:59:53 1998 5th - 4:25:30
2002 2 hour - 26,815 meters 2001 40K - 3:24:08 50K - 3:57:18 1995 25K - 1:57:02 1994 25K - 1:58:05
50K Olympic Games
2000 – 28th – 4:03:05 – Sydney, Australia
20K World Cup
2004 - 82nd - 1:32:28 - Naumberg, Germany
1997 - 76th – 1:26:36 – Podebrady, Czechoslovakia
1995 – 80th - 1:35:40 – Beijing, China
50K World Cup
2002 – 13th – 3:56:13 – Torino, Italy
1999 – 45th – 3:59:53 – Mezidon, France