Teenage sensation Sydney McLaughlin is looking to break the 300 meter national record next week at the 110th New York Millrose Games. McLaughlin had an amazing year in 2016 as she was the youngest member of the United States Olympic Track and Field team. She ran her signature event, the 400 meter hurdles in Rio at the 2016 Olympic Games. She failed to make the finals in the event but certainly established herself as one of the premier high school talents in the past few decades.
McLaughlin’s reputation as one of the best high school athletes ever was further cemented last week when she ran a relay leg on the women’s distance medley relay at the New Balance Grand Prix in Boston. The relay, consisting of 4 U.S. Olympians, broke the world record in the event with a time of 10:40.31. McLaughlin ran the second leg on the relay (400 meters) with a split of 52.32 seconds.
Last November, McLaughlin committed to the University of Kentucky as a member of their track and field team. The Kentucky Wildcats are known for producing some of the best hurdles in the world over the last few years, including Kendra Harrison, the current world recorder holder in the 100 meter hurdles. It wouldn’t surprise me if McLaughlin elects to run professionally after one year of college, or possibly before then.
At the Millrose Games, McLaughlin will compete against fellow Olympian Natasha Hastings and Olympic gold medalist Shaunae Miller. The national high school record for 300 meters is currently held by Francena McCorory in 2006 with a time of 36.96 seconds. McLaughlin ran a personal best of 37.11 seconds on January 14, which is the second best indoor time for a female high school athlete.
If you ask me, I think she will break the record and continue her dominance in high school track and field.
By Dr. Brandon Spradley
Dr. Spradley is the Director of Sports Management at the United States Sports Academy, and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.