The Champion speaks
Most Class B girls will be chasing Dakota Wood during the 100 hurdles and 300 hurdles, but Dakota will be chasing history. The senior and reigning hurdles state champion will be trying to break Whitney Carlson’s records in the 100 and 300 hurdles this season.
Whitney Carlson is one of the greatest North Dakota track and field athletes ever, so these two records aren’t simple and easy ones to break. The 100 hurdles record is 14.33 seconds, the 300 hurdles record is 42.26, and they are the best runs for either Class A or Class B – Carlson also holds the Class B state meet record in the 200 (24.95), and best long jump in state history (19-05.50).
Wood has a plan to break the record, and it involves getting faster and making sure that she is in top shape.
“I think, in the short distance sprints, I need to work on my finish because that’s where I’m kind of weak at, and then I need to get in shape so I can run the 300 hurdles all the way through,” Wood said.
Wood’s plan to get better also includes jumping from further away when she attacks the hurdles, a skill she learned at a North Dakota State Track and Field camp.
“I went to NDSU camp this year and I worked on being further away from the hurdle, so I was working on that this summer. I think if I can do that in a meet it’ll help a lot, just barely getting over it because I could get over it faster.”
Even though Wood has her personal goals this year, she is still a team-first runner and wants to help the relays at least qualify for state. She’s oddly excited to see what the 4x800 relay does – there aren’t many sprinters who want to watch half-milers run in a relay because they fear they may get put on the distance relay.
“I’m hoping to help them (sprint relays) qualify at least, but I think our relays are still going to be very strong this year. We actually are going to have a 3,200 relay team (4x800) this year,” Wood said.