Chase Collegiate School 6th Grader Jason Harte, of Cheshire, placed a strong 143rd Saturday to help his Litchfield Track Club Team place 7th overall in the National Junior Olympic Championships. Beginning with state championships in all 50 states, the top three teams from each state then competed in 16 Regional Championships, with the top three teams from those Regionals converging on Albuquerque, New Mexico, for two days of racing.
Competing on the three-kilometer (1.86 mile) championship course, Harte continued his impressive improvement all season and battled through the mile-high thin air to preserve his position. Harte's Litchfield Track Club team won the Regionals three weeks ago over Rhode Island by only one point, but in the Nationals, they easily beat the Rhode Island squad by 49 points to claim Northeast Region bragging rights.
The Junior Olympic Cross-Country and Junior Olympic Track programs have produced top high school, college and Olympic competitors for decades. Harte returned from the race pleased with his effort and feeling as though he could have run even faster, which he undoubtedly will.