PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — Churchland High School in Portsmouth is hosting a ‘Sprint to Success: Track and Field Clinic’ for youth on Sept. 9 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Lashawn Merritt, a three time Olympic gold medalist is hosting the event. The clinic welcomes beginners or seasoned runners between the ages of eight and 17-years-old. Attendees will learn tips for success on the track from experienced coaches and athletes.

About 150 students signed up for the event and traveled from all over the state to participate.

Merritt grew up in Portsmouth and attended Woodrow Wilson High School.

He says he wants to share his track and field knowledge with kids from his hometown.

“It starts here, this is the ground root, I feel like if I can spread a message, get them active and spread some of my expertise, and I can do it on a day to day basis then I’m all for it,” said Merritt.

Merritt says all of the spots for the clinic filled up in three days. He also said he plans to have more events like this in the future — maybe one in Virginia Beach and another on the Peninsula. 

Glenn Allen teammates, Taryn Patrick, Skyler Hope and Princess Comara, run relays together and do various events ranging from the 100 all the way to the 800.

Comara says it’s great to see Lashawn giving back to his home state and hopes she can do the same one day.

“It’s exciting because its like he was from where I was from so maybe someday I’ll get to do this, said Comara.

The event is organized by The Lashawn L. Merritt Foundation, Inc.

To purchase tickets, click here.

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