Sports

Royal finishes second in Youth Olympic trials

Oak Harbor High School junior Adrianna Royal finished second in the 2,000-meter steeplechase at the Youth Olympic track and field trials Saturday, April 3, in Arlington, Texas.

Royal is an alternate to winner Destiny Jenkins of Georgia for the Youth Olympic games slated for Singapore in August.

Royal was leading the five-lap race for the first three laps until she struck the water barrier and tumbled into the water pit. By the time she recovered, she was passed by Jenkins. Although she suffered the fall and a resulting shin injury, she finished just 12 seconds behind Jenkins with a time of 7:50.

Last summer Royal lost to Jenkins in the Junior Olympic national meet by 22 seconds.

Because of her success in the steeplechase, Royal plans to attend a track camp at the University of Oregon this summer to get specialized instruction for the race.

At the meet in Arlington last weekend, a United States official told Royal she had "very good form" and should keep training in the steeplechase.

In the steeplechase, runners must clear five 2.5-feet "permanent" hurdles per lap. These barriers do not fall when struck by a runner as in other traditional hurdle races. One of the barriers includes a water pit on the landing side and is wide enough and sturdy enough for the runners to step upon to help clear the water.

Royal currently competes for the Oak Harbor High School track team and has the season's fourth best 800 time (2:22.58) among all 4A runners in the state. The steeplechase is not an event in Washington high school track and field.

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