If Julia Hawkins’ world record time of 40.12 seconds in the 100-meter dash doesn’t seem like blazing speed, maybe consider the fact she was born during World War I.
At 101 years old, Hawkins became the oldest female athlete to compete in the USA Track and Field Outdoors Masters Championships on Saturday by breaking the world record for competitors older than 100.
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Hawkins ran faster at the Senior Games earlier this year, but records aren’t officially ratified until December. If for some reason her previous run is not accepted, Saturday’s time becomes the record.
“I didn’t feel like I was (breaking the record),” Hawkins said. “Other times I felt like I was flying. This time, I wasn’t feeling like I was going that fast.”
A Baton Rouge native, Hawkins made her Masters debut alongside fellow Baton Rougean Mary Norckauer (92) and Christel Donley (82).
Combined, the three sprinters have 275 years of experience between them. By comparison, the entire field of nine sprinters in the women’s 100 at the 2016 Rio Olympics had a combined age of 198.
Norckauer, previously a well-established competitor at the Masters, ran a time of 33.21 seconds, while Donley ran 21.60. While all three ran in the same heat, they’re all considered champions for their respective age groups, which put competitors into five-year divisions.
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