USA Olympic track & field athletes to share expertise at summer camp
The Centre College athletic department has announced that the College will host a three-day camp featuring 17 Olympic track & field athletes this summer. The camp will take place from June 5 to June 8.
Former Olympians Jackie Joyner-Kersee and Sharrieffa Barksdale will oversee the camp. Centre head cross country and track and field coach, Lisa Owens, will be in charge of promotion and camp set-up.
Joyner-Kersee won the silver medal in the heptathlon at the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles, Calif. In the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea, she took gold in the heptathlon and the long jump. She later took gold in the heptathlon and bronze in the long jump in the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona, Spain. Joyner-Kersey currently holds the world record in the heptathlon and the American record in the long jump. In late 1999, Sports Illustrated for Women voted Joyner-Kersee the greatest female athlete of the 20th century.
Barksdale won the U.S. title, the TAC Championships and the silver medal in the Pan-American Games in the 400-meter hurdles in 1983, and she then competed in the 1984 Olympic Games in the 400 meter hurdles. She was the assistant manager for the U.S. Track & Field team during the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China.
Tyson Gay, Jamie Nieto, Aretha Hill-Thurmond, Kristin Heaston, Dwight Phillips and Bershawn Jackson are a few of the U.S. track and field athletes who will be putting on clinics.
A Lexington, Ky. native, Gay was named the USOC Sportsman of the Year, the IAAF Male Athlete of the Year and the Track & Field Man of the Year in 2007 following wins in the 100 meters and the 200 meters at the U.S. Championships and the World Championships. He was also a member of the 4×100 relay World Championship team in 2007. Gay is the American record holder in the 100 meters and is the second fastest 100-meter runner in world history.
Nieto participated in the 2004 Olympic Games in the high jump after winning the U.S. Outdoor Championship in 2003 and the U.S. Indoor Championship and the U.S. Olympic Trials in 2004.
Hill-Thurmond competed in the Olympic Games is 1996, 2004 and 2008 in the discus throw. She won the Pan-American Games in 1999 and 2003, the U.S. Championships in 2003, 2004 and 2006 and the U.S. Olympic Trials in 2008.
Heaston participated in the 2004 and 2008 Olympic Games, following a second-place finish at the Olympic Trials. She won the U.S. Outdoor Championships in 2003, 2005 and 2007 and the Indoor Championships in 2003.
Phillips, a former member of the University of Kentucky track & field team, was the U.S. Outdoor National Runner-Up in the long jump and went on to perform in that event at the 2000 Olympic Games. In 2003, Phillips won the World Indoor Championships, World Outdoor Championships, U.S. Outdoor National Championships and the IAAF Grand Prix in the long jump. Phillips helped represent the U.S. at the 2004 Olympic Games after winning the U.S. Outdoor National Championship in the long jump.
Following a first-place finish in the 400 hurdles at the 2001 Junior Olympics, Jackson went on to take bronze in the 400 hurdles at the 2008 Olympic Games. He also won the gold medal at the 2005 World Championships in the 400 hurdles and in the 4×400 relay at the 2009 World Championships. In 2010, he won the U.S. Indoor Championships in the 400 and the U.S. Championships in the 400 hurdles.
Other outstanding USA track and field athletes who will be conducting clinics are Chandra Cheesborough, Joette Clark Diggs, Johnny Gray, Jeff Hartwig, Gary Morgan, Francie Larrieu Smith, Rose Monday, Dana Pounds and Angela Taylor.
During the three-day camp, Demetrius Robertson, the 2010 Kentucky State Bodybuilding Heavyweight Champion, will provide instruction on sports nutrition and weight training.
The camp is open to boys and girls ages 12 to 19, with space being limited. In order to secure a spot in the camp, a $100 non-refundable deposit is required. The camp costs $400 per overnight camper and $315 per commuter camper.
A coach or parent can attend for $200 and will receive lunch daily, observation of all instruction, a one-hour session with the Olympians daily and a camp polo shirt.
“There’s never been a track and field camp of this magnitude in the United States. There’s never been a camp with this many Olympians at one time. I think it’s the premier track and field camp in the country. I haven’t seen a better one with the clinicians coming here,” Owens says.