By TONY EIERDAM
With Mineral Wells High School head cross country/track coach Jackie Harvey instructing recent Rams and Lady Rams track greats Lorenzo Johnson, Adrian Colbert and Maricela Castillo, and recently, current MWHS trackster DaShawn Hicks, one could say that incredible talent was the reason these four athletes qualified at the state level, with Johnson and Colbert earning state championships.
But if you ask these four or Harvey, they would say hard work and a strong work ethic is the reason they are successful.
A sidebar of that hard work with the four athletes comes every summer, when Harvey puts together the Mineral Wells Track Club, registered with the Texas Amateur Athletic Federation, to compete in summer track meets in June and July.
Beginning Monday, Harvey and the MWTC will have its first summer workout.
Not only can Palo Pinto County and MWHS track athletes compete at track meets against the best runners in the state, but they will also have thrice-weekly instruction from the Hall of Fame coach who has been the top track boss at MWHS for the past 41 years.
Harvey explained the many benefits athletes can get out of participating in the Mineral Wells Track Club summer program.
The team will compete in four meets, including a home meet on June 22, before regional and state competition ensue in July.
“One of the main benefits to running summer track is for kids who are running cross country in the fall to stay in shape and keep competing,” Harvey said. “But it also helps the kids who may not be in cross country but who will play volleyball or football in the fall.
“It is a competitive – and we think fun – way to stay in shape.
“But for the cross country and track runners it also gives them chance to work on technique and improve on their times.”
Harvey said another benefit to competing at the meets, which in July include regional and state AAU and TAAF meets, is that college coaches frequent the events in search of talent.
“The college coaches go to these summer track meets, and not just at the state and regional level,” Harvey said. “These meets are a great chance for kids to get exposure.”
The team, split into six age groups, will practice in June and July on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays at the Jackie Harvey Track Complex on the campus of Mineral Wells High School.
The one-day meets in June will be on Saturday. Upper-level meets normally last 2-3 days.
Harvey said an athlete can join the team at any time during the year.
“We accept kids after signup deadline,” Harvey said. “All they have to do is show up 15 minutes before a practice to sign up.”
The summer program is for boys and girls ages 8-18. Workouts will be from 6-7 p.m. for ages 13 and under, and 7-8 p.m. for boys and girls ages 14-18. The membership fee is $25.
For more information call the City
Head coach Jackie Harvey said summer track club will welcome participants after signup deadline
By TONY EIERDAM
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