Local senior athletes shine at track meets

By Paul Danzer, Columbian community sports reporter

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Janice Bradley of Vancouver and Carol Burckhardt of Ridgefield earned medals at summer track and field competitions for senior athletes.

Bradley, 75, posted All-American marks in multiple events at both the National Senior Games in Cleveland and at USA Masters Throws Championships in Lisle, Ill.

At the National Senior Games, held in mid-July, Bradley won a bronze medal in the hammer throw for women 75-79 with a mark of 63 feet, 6 inches. She placed fourth in the javelin (43-9), fifth in the high jump (2-10), and eighth in the 100-meter dash (21.79 seconds), 200 (50.22), and discus (50 feet). Bradley carried the Washington state flag during the Celebration of Athletes.

At the USA Masters Throws Championships, held in early August, Bradley placed second in the 75-79 age division for women. She posted personal records of 52-3 in the discus, 28-0 for the weight throw and 18-8 for the super weight throw. The weights were lighter than what athletes younger than 75 throw, which Bradley said she appreciated.

Burckhardt, 68, was the only competitor in the division for women ages 65-69 at the USA Masters Throws Championships, earning the gold medal in all three competitions.

In the throws pentathlon, athletes throw five implements — the hammer, shot put, discus, javelin and weighted ball.

In the super weight event, Burckhardt threw the 20-pound weight 20-63/4. In the ultra weight pentathlon, Burckhardt threw the 12-pound weight 25-4, the 20-pound weight 20-6 3/4, the 25-pound weight 18-0, the 35-pound weight 13-1, and the 44-pound weight 10-1 1/4.

So far in 2013, Burckhardt has recorded All-American marks for her age in the hammer, shot put, discus and 20-pound super weight.

Burckhardt said she began throwing when she turned 60 and is self-taught. She was happy with her performance at nationals.

"When you get a year older, you don't automatically get stronger," Burckhardt said.