If you are thinking about joining a track club to compete this summer, you should act soon. Even if you won't be joining the team until your high school season is over, most clubs ask that you register for the team during the normal registration period which is already under way. Here are a few of the clubs that are popular among Montgomery County athletes.
The titans are one of the newer track clubs in the DC area. Established in 2004 and coached by Dave Knight, the Titans have experienced tremendous success and helped develop numerous elite athletes including Olivia Ekpone, Katie Wolf, Jamal Currica, and Avery Graham. In their three year history, Titan athletes have brought home a total of 42 Junior Olympic medals from the USATF Junior Olympics and the AAU Junior Olympics. The Titans practice at Northwest High School.
The Firebirds have produced county, state, regional and national champions in each of the past 24 seasons. The club has held a number of national records in the past. Recent athletes to win national titles with the Firebirds are Antonio Palmer and Sean Stanley. Alissa Jewell and Shayla Davis also competed for the club. They are coached by Greg Boykin and practice at Gaithersburg High School.
Ever wonder why Richard Montgomery has been so good in the sprints lately? The Rockville Striders has at least something to do with it as Brendan Etzel, Patrick Pinchinat, and Keenan Crutchfield have all developed with the Striders since before they were in high school. More recently, the Striders have tapped into the talent pool at Good Counsel and can also claim Caleb Porzel and Jelani Jenkins as members. If that's not enough speed, Audrey Gariepy-Bogui also trained with the Striders. Coached by Buddy Crutchfield, the Striders practice at Montgomery College.
While it might be a long drive to Eleanor Roosevelt High School for many Montgomery County residents, each year a few make the trip to train with some of the best athletes in the entire metro area. Hummingbird Track Club was founded in 1996 and recent members from Montgomery County include Chris Bowie, Giovanni Reumante, Louis Varella and Jonathan Haughton. They are coached by Preston Taylor.
Around since 1974, the Silver Spring Track Club regularly participates in AAU Regional Qualifier meets, AAU Club Championship meets, and in the AAU Junior Olympics. Leah Putman competed for Silver Spring and has a younger sister already competing in the pentathlon for it. The club is currently coached by Rita Williams and practices at Kennedy High School.