First winter track meet kicks off season strong

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Photo Credit: Kavi Singh

A view of athletes from multiple teams running on Dec. 19’s meet.

by David Viggiano , Staff Writer

The winter track team attended its first meet on Monday, Dec. 19 at the Armory of New York City.

Head coaches Mr. J.P. McCarten and Mr. Brian Luckenbill have been preparing the athletes for competitive races and field events, including short distance and long distance races as well as jumping and throwing. The season allows for participants to experience diverse tracks such as banked and flat tracks as well as competition against a range of four groups.

The team consists of members from every grade, many of which are participating specifically to train for the following spring track season. However, the sport is still taken seriously and competitively, as shown at the meet.

Even though the team did not return home until around 10 p.m., the meet was considered a success. Athletes were able to use their recently developed skills to compete and, in the case of new members, get a sense as to how meets typically function.

“Our first meet on Monday was a great opportunity for our athletes to get their feet wet in indoor competition and make attainable goals projected for the short-term practices and long-term competition throughout our season,“ said Ms. Kristen Bradley, a math teacher and first-year jumping coach for the team.

The meet was preceded by several practices for the team. Athletes rotated between workouts and recovery days, during which lifts take place. Coaches have also made recommendations to students as to which events they would be best suited for without forcing them into specific events. Within specific event training, different skills and objectives are emphasized and developed for each individual athlete.

“Strategy is a skill all of the athletes employ in their respective events to make their marks count by the end of their competition,” Bradley said. “However, the strategies are unique to each individual for every event.”

While athletes have personal reasons for participating in certain events, the experienced coaches have given advice as to which events they should try in the future based on their skill base, which some have said may influence their decisions down the line.

“I do sprinting, and the coach, McCarten, has said that I should try mid-distance,” said Carly Erani (‘20), a first year participant. “I like sprinting the best because it’s not that tiring, but I’d be open to try mid-distance. I just need more practice.”

Kavi Singh (‘20), another first year participant, has been advised similarly and has acted upon it.

“My coach kind of has me do different sprinting events,” Singh said. “I think I like sprinting, and I’m starting to jumping events as well.”

Practice has been described by athletes as a successful mix of training and lifting.

“Lifts are usually every other day; they’re on recovery days, which is after our workout,” Erani said. “You have time to rest if you just had a hard workout, and I think it works because there’s no two days in a row where you’d be overly tired.”

With one meet completed and a long season to follow, practice and motivation among athletes is expected by the team to lead to success, personal and physical growth, and preparation for the spring season.

“I am honored to work with a group of athletes who train for their personal improvement, offer guidance to one another within their event group, and cheers in support of all other event groups,” Bradley said. “I look forward to the variety of developments all of our athletes will make throughout the season individually and as a team.”