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Track Athletes Go Indoor

Alex Wallingford, Sports Editor

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Outdoor track consists of fresh air, the smell of the rubber on the track, sunshine, and a team, but what about indoor track?

The cold, harsh winter weather takes a toll on most track runners that commit to the sport year round. This has caused indoor track to evolve in high school sports. Instead of training outside it gives track runners the opportunity to stay warm and stay conditioned during the winter months.

Senior track sprinter Darquan Richardson has been competing in indoor meets since his freshman year, and knows the differences between indoor and outdoor track. Richardson participates in the 60m dash, the 200m dash, and the 400m dash.

“You can definitely tell the difference from running on the track outside and the one inside,” Richardson said. “You don’t get the natural outdoor elements indoor, including clean, fresh air. This makes indoor track very difficult.”

Most high schools do not have indoor tracks so the meets typically take place on college campuses.

“For our meets we travel to mostly colleges,” Richardson said. “Some specific places would be IU Bloomington, Depauw, UIndy, and Kentucky.”

Being inside makes the racing strategy different due to the different size tracks.

“You have to race completely different during the indoor season,” Richardson said. “The track up in Bloomington is only 200m long and it is banked. A sharper turn can cause problems with speed and form.”

Besides the different track sizes and dirty air, collegiate athletes compete in these meets as well.

“RJ Williams and I went to a meet this year where it was just us and the rest were college track runners,” Richardson said.

Sophomore Angelo Gonzalez has less experience on the track, but competed in many indoor meets as a freshman. Gonzalez is a distance runner for the track team competing in the mile and two mile.

“It is really hard to run indoor,” Gonzalez said. “The air is extremely thick and it’s hard to get a good breathe when your lungs are full of it.”

With a longer distance, Gonzalez also has a different strategy during the races.

“I don’t have a  different race strategy, but a different attitude mentally,” Gonzalez said. A mile on the track is only four laps and a two mile is eight laps, but with the indoor track being smaller a mile is eight laps and the two mile is 16 laps, making the races feel much longer.”

                            

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Track Athletes Go Indoor