By Theresa O’Connor
Can you believe a seventh grader can run an open 400-meter race in only 1 minute and 3 seconds! I know I can’t. Well, Olivia Gillespie benefited so much from running that race. Not only is her time fastest in the state of Arizona and 18t in the nation but she is only 3 seconds off from qualifying into the Junior Olympics! Pretty awesome, right? From the help of Coach Jessica Walsh, Assistant Coach Adam Potter, and Olivia’s encouraging teammates, she has made this huge accomplishment.
Not to mention, Olivia also did the 200-meter race, the long jump and the triple jump. She came in at least the top 3 for these events. Olivia even won 3 gold medals during the Great Hearts championships! Her coaches and teammates have really pushed her and cheered her on. Especially, Assistant Coach Adam Potter who has worked one on one with helping Olivia on the triple jump. “My whole team inspired me by pushing me all the way to my limits because whenever I ran the 400 meter race, they would run along by my side and cheer me on. Also my coaches worked with me individually on my 400-meter race , long jump, and triple jump which really helped,” She said.
As you can see, getting to where Olivia is takes a lot of work. She worked really hard in meets and practices and it really paid off. Good luck to Olivia next year and hopefully she can qualify into the Junior Olympics!