Two seniors advance during indoor season

courtesy Nathan Cumberbatch

courtesy Nathan Cumberbatch

For many new runners, the indoor track and field season was the first opportunity to compete in meets.

“[We] had to rely on some of our varsity athletes with their previous experience to help the newcomers out,” said Dominic Newman, head coach of boys and girls track and field.

Nathan Cumberbatch, senior at SHS, had an earlier start to the season.

“I [started with] some independent meets,” Cumberbatch said. “I ran some good times in New York and I won nationals in the 800-meter, which was exciting.”

Delea Martins, also a senior, returned to the track after a year of recovering from injury.

It just felt really good to be healthy and back on the track.

— Delea Martins, senior

“I only competed in two meets, but it went really well for me,” Martins said. “It just felt really good to be healthy and back on the track.”

Cumberbatch believes he improved most in race management and coordination.

“I got better at knowing where I was in the race and knowing where I had to be at each time in the race,” Cumberbatch said. “I think I got stronger with the consistent year of training.”

Martins believes she improved most in her abilities as a leader.

“I have to set an example to the freshman and newer athletes, [specifically] how to work hard and [improve] technique,” Martins said.

Cumberbatch originally set two major goals for the indoor season.

I got better at knowing where I was in the race and knowing where I had to be…

— Nathan Cumberbatch, senior

“I had the goal of winning nationals, which I accomplished and also running under 1:50 in the 800, which I haven’t done yet but I’m very close,” Cumberbatch said. “It’s probably my most successful season and I’m very excited to see what I have left for the rest of the season.”

During the indoor season, Martins competed in the 400 meter and received first in state championships, missing the state record by a tenth of a second. Martins hopes to focus her efforts on the upcoming outdoor season.

“I want to break one or two state records in the 100, 200 and 400, and I wanna win state in at least two months,” Martins said.

Cumberbatch is proud of his consistency with training.

“When you get to a higher level, you get to the point where you just have to squeeze out little bits of time everywhere so I became a lot more intentional with lots of stuff,” Cumberbatch said.

Cumberbatch plans to run track for the University of Southern California.

“My goal for next year is to make the Olympic team,” Cumberbatch said. “College track is really a unique thing because it’s an individual sport, but in college they make it a really big team sport.”

Martins plans to run track for the University of North Carolina.

“I want to be an [Atlantic Coast Conference] championship holder in my years and I want to qualify for the nationals and place,” Martins said. “I want to make a name for myself in the sport.”

Both Martins and Cumberbatch agreed that the biggest challenge of the season was returning to a rigorous training schedule after injury.

“It’s challenging in more ways than not because I’m more aware of my body and I can assess how I feel better,” Martins said. “It’s my comeback season so I feel like I have a lot of pressure on myself…I want to do exponentially better my senior year,” Martins said.

Cumberbatch adds that getting back to his desired fitness level was more difficult than he expected.

“Getting back to your level is probably the hardest part, but once you’re there, it’s time to get better,” Cumberbatch said.

During the week of April 10, Cumberbatch, who represented Trinidad, competed in the CARIFTA games, in which he took first place.

“This year it felt a lot more professional and I think that’s what I needed going into college next year and running at a lot of the bigger meets,” Cumberbatch said.