There may not have been a spring track season for high school athletes, but Oakland Mills rising junior Judson Lincoln IV isn’t letting that slow him down.
Building on a winning personal-record time of 22.48 seconds in the 200-meter dash at Bullseye Running’s Summer Track Series in late July, Lincoln IV traveled to Florida for the 2020 AAU National Junior Olympics in early August and was named an All-American in the 15-16 age group after several standout performances. He won the national title in his age group in the 400-meter dash with a PR time of 49.45 seconds and then finished seventh in both the 100 (PR 11.49 seconds) and 200 (22.63).
“The whole season, I couldn’t break 50 [seconds] and I kind of got the monkey off of my back,” Lincoln IV said. “I came in trying to run a 48, maybe a 47 high, but it was so hot and humid that I couldn’t run a 48 or 47. But it took the monkey off of my back because I couldn’t break 50 all year and that was the plan to break 50.”
In addition to his All-American status, his times in Maryland place him in first for the 400-meter dash in all age groups and third in the 100-meter and 200-meter dashes for all age groups. He accomplished this after returning from a leg injury that he sustained while training after high school athletics were put on pause due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The biggest difference between the 100 and 200, compared to the longer sprints, is the importance of a quick start. In the case of Lincoln IV at AAU Nationals, he felt that he broke too slowly.
“In the 200 down there [in Florida], I got out really slow,” said Lincoln IV. “I was closing in during the 100, but I just didn’t have the room to make it up. Just the start is what I need to work on to make it into higher places in those events.”
He has a number of goals moving forward, namely “to get stronger because it will bring more speed” and to get back in shape prior to whenever his high school season takes place.