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THANK HEAVEN FOR....
Bil Gilbert
November 27, 1967
When it was formed last spring the Fairfield girls' track team ran in worn sneakers in a pasture and was coached by two volunteers who didn't know how to make a stopwatch stop. Now the team has real uniforms and has won a meet in New York, while the coaches have learned a lot about little girls
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November 27, 1967

Thank Heaven For....

When it was formed last spring the Fairfield girls' track team ran in worn sneakers in a pasture and was coached by two volunteers who didn't know how to make a stopwatch stop. Now the team has real uniforms and has won a meet in New York, while the coaches have learned a lot about little girls

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Where in April we had to drag the girls out of the car to run in Chambers-burg, they now literally leap out to get a crack at girls from Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington and New York. Linda has continued to be what she first seemed to be—a girl who can run against anyone. Her sister Ann has found her stick—the broad jump. Last time out she jumped 15� feet, and there are few 13-year-olds jumping farther. Cindy has found the hurdles, which suit her talents and temperament. Robin is taking a keen professional interest in the time of Tennessee A&I sprinters. Kathy, the jam-a-spike-thru-their-toe blonde, can, as it turns out, run forever and at meets now watches Charlotte Cook speculatively, biding her time (about two more years) until she can run against her. And Lyn, the daughter who was a relay worry, has now more or less established herself as the best 11-year-old half miler in the Midatlantic area.

Along the way, after discovering that the AAU sponsored a lot of age-group competitors, the Striders recruited half a dozen 8- and 9-year-old Bonnies, Karens, Debbys, Lees, Sandys, who, all put together, fit into one pair of medium-sized sweat pants. However, they are only tiny in bulk. Otherwise they arc very big around here. They were particularly big a few weekends ago when they went to New York, where they gawked at tall buildings, got lost on the subway and spent the night in a real hotel. The next afternoon they ran three quarters of a mile in Van Cortlandt Park, sprinting across the finish line to help Fairfield win the title. Now, admittedly, little girls' cross-country is an esoteric adjunct to what can only be regarded as a minor minor sport. Nevertheless, at the moment we have in Fairfield (pop. 500) a great, gaudy trophy that says our little girls ran faster than anyone else in New York City (pop. eight million) on Oct. 21.

The country mouse-city mouse syndrome being what it is, there was a lot of yelling and screaming in Van Cortlandt Park after the awards were made, but one girl never lost her cool and that was Cindy, who will compete against anybody, anywhere, at anything, including cross-country. "What do we do now? We've seen all those girls," Cindy asked, nodding towards New York City. "Don't get a big head," I told her. "Remember, those girls from Detroit ran the legs right off of you back in September."

But that was just the coach talking. I was thinking: there is always Munich in 1972, you cool little chick.

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