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Pres Track and Field Part of History

Emma Claire McCarthy clears at 10'6" pole

Corinne Jaques

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As our Presentation track season draws to a close with WCAL and CCS Finals, many are anxious to discover who will break new records and finish first in the various events of these final track and field meets.

While everyone’s focus is concentrated on the current athletes of the season, let’s take a look back in history at when track at Presentation High School began. The first year that Presentation had a track team was 1982, and the head coach was Deanne Johnson. Coincidentally, this was the same year a cross country team was added to Pres sports.

The events that the athletes ran included the long jump, the 100-meter dash, and the 1600-meter run. However, this track team was much different than the one that competes for Presentation now. It had 24 members, and the cross country team had 2 members.

Now let’s go even further back in history—2,788 years to be exact—when the sport of track had just begun. The very first documented track meet was held at the Ancient Olympic Games in 776 BC in Olympia, Greece. In fact, track was the only contestable sport during this time period. The most popular event at the Games was the stadion footrace, which is comparable to the 200-meter dash today.

Eventually, the range of events expanded to include more running competitions, the long jump, discus throw, javelin throw and wrestling. As track and field gained more popularity and spread throughout Europe and Asia, other cultures added influences to the sport. The precursors to the shot put and hammer throw events, the stone put and weight throw, grew popular among the Celtic regions of Scotland and Ireland. In addition, the pole vault, one of the latest events to be included in the repertoire of track and field, originated in the Northern European Lowlands.

However, these competitions of strength and fitness were only designed for male participation—at least in the times of the Ancient Olympics. Women were not even allowed to watch the competitions! Fe

male participation and competition in sports, including track and field, was limited until the late nineteenth century. As society gradually began to regard women as counterparts and equals to men, women were permitted to participate in sports. From the year 1900 onward, the Olympic Games have included female competitors

Fast forward another 111 years, and women now participate in nearly every sport that men do. Here at Presentation, our track and field team members even run in some of the same races as other boys, like the two-mile.

The races that Pres currently participate in are numerous sprints/dashes, hurdles, long distance races ranging from the 800-meter to the 3200-meter and relays. The field events that Presentation track athletes participate in include the long jump, high jump, triple jump, pole vault, shot put and the discus.

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Pres Track and Field Part of History