Five Altus athletes competed last weekend in the USA Track and Field Run Like The Wind Meet in Elgin.
Giovanni Esmerado won the boys 15-16 division 800 meters and the 1500.
Bethany Dawn Garrison won the girls 11-12 division 3000 and 1500. Julia Pack won the girls 15-16 3000 and placed fourth in the 1500.
Jimmie Dollins finished second in the girls 15-16 100 hurdles and third in the 400. Gracie Hernke took third in the girls 15-16 400 and 800.
“I thought they all did really well considering they only trained for this for a day or so,” Altus coach Robert Garrison said. “All of them are joining the OK Wind Runners Track Club and will continue to train for the state qualifier.”
The OK Wind Runners are a club team out of Elgin, with members also from Altus, Duncan, Weatherford, Clinton and Elk City.
The meet was the first in a series that the USATF will be hosting in Oklahoma. The next two meets for the Wind Runners will be Saturday in Okmulgee and the Eastside Steppers Invite on June 14 in Moore. The USATF Oklahoma Association Championships will be June 21 in Cache. The USATF regional meet will be July 9-12, and the national championships will be July 21-27 in Humble, Texas.
“We didn’t find out about this until a couple of days before,” Garrison said. “Most of the Altus contingent will only run until the June 21 meet in Cache because of vacations. We would like to get a lot more kids involved so the club can grow.”
The USATF has divisions for boys and girls 8 and under, 9 and under, 10 and under, 11-12, 13-14, 15-16 and 17-18. It also has master men’s and women’s divisions.
For more information about the Wind Runners, call Garrison at 580-481-0327 or visit online at www.okwindrunners.com.
The USATF was formerly known as The Athletics Congress/USA. The name was changed in 1992 to increase recognition for the organization and track and field in the U.S.
In 1878, rower and runner William B. Curtis founded what became the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) in New York City. The name was formally adopted in 1887. The AAU governed the sport of track and field until 1979, when the first Amateur Sports Act decreed that the AAU could no longer hold international franchises for more than one sport.
The Athletics Congress/USA (TAC/USA) became fully operational in late 1979 with its first annual meeting, conducted in Las Vegas in conjunction with that year’s AAU convention and a constitutional convention in Dallas/Fort Worth in 1980. The first stand-alone annual meeting occurred in Atlanta in late fall of 1980.