Drew Foster is on the cusp of a major breakthrough at the senior level of wrestling.
Foster, a graduate of Mediapolis High School and the University of Northern Iowa, placed third with 86 kilograms at the UWW Senior Nationals last spring.
Foster has the biggest challenge – and opportunity – of his senior-level career ahead of him this weekend.
Foster, who competes for Panther Wrestling Club, will aim to earn a spot on the United States squad for the upcoming World Championships.
The 2021 Senior World Team Trials take place Saturday and Sunday in Lincoln, Nebraska.
The 2021 World Championships take place October 2-10 in Oslo, Norway.
With Olympic champion David Taylor having already qualified the 86 kg. weight class, Foster will move up to 92 kg. for this contest.
With J’Den Cox, Nate Jackson, Kollin Moore and Kyven Gadson among those already weighing 92 kilograms, Foster knows he will have his work cut out for him.
“I do some things a little differently since I have to gain weight,” Foster said. “I added some things to what I put in my body. They call it Jungle Juice. I’m trying to build up a little bit more muscle. I’ve been doing that basically since Last Chance Qualifier in April. I made the transition. around 92 since then. “
Following:UNI graduate Drew Foster places third in his weight class at UWW Senior Freestyle Nationals
Foster, who won an NCAA National Championship as a senior at UNI, learned the ropes at the freestyle level. Foster has had great success in the folk style, but there are subtle changes in the freestyle that make the difference between winning and losing.
“It was a learning experience for sure,” said Foster. “Anytime you get on the mat in freestyle you have to be very aware of your stance. I worked a lot on my feet, making sure there is nothing around the edge where you can push and don’t give up show points Freestyle allows me to progress in my fight and makes me hungry and feel better every time I step on the mat.
While Foster spends much of his time in Cedar Falls training with Panther Wrestling Club, he has traveled to achieve different looks.
“I recently went to Michigan and trained with Canada’s 97 kilogram rep, Jordan Steen,” Foster said. “I also had the opportunity to train Myles Amine and Mike Macchiavello for a week. We had a very solid training there.”
Foster knows he will have to step up his game to 92 kilograms. Cox, two-time world champion and 2016 Olympic bronze medalist, is the favorite in the weight class. And Jackson has been a longtime rival to Foster, since his college days.
Foster is ready for his biggest challenge yet at the senior level.
“I think it’s going to be a 16-man squad, so there will be a lot of guys there,” Foster said. “It might tire me out a bit against bigger guys. Maybe I should exert a little more energy. Right now I’m feeling pretty good. I just need to make sure my legs are cool and my body feels good. I’m good to go. “