Sophie Richter breaks track and field school record


Richter runs the last leg of her race before breaking the school record. Photo courtesy of Sophie Richter.

Macy Waddle

On April 7th, Manual sophomore Sophie Richter (YPAS) broke the school record for the 200-meter dash by 0.7 seconds at a weekday meet at St. Xaiver high school. 

“It wasn’t my intention or anything [to break the school record]. I knew it was a fast time, and it was my PR, but it didn’t even cross my mind that I would do something like that until my coaches were coming up to me a few minutes later,” she said. 

This year is Richter’s first year running for Manual after last year’s track season was canceled due to COVID-19. To continue improving her times over this long break, she trained in a variety of ways including training with Louisville Track Club (LTC), a team for runners across Louisville run by Bellarmine coaches. 

“I had the advantage of training until mid-December so I would be in shape for the school season,” she said. She also used some of her own equipment to train, including using a spin bike and weight training. 

Richter has been running since she was in third grade but has just recently started focusing on the events she does now. “I really like doing long jump and triple jump too and I’m fairly decent at both, but I think my coaches are wanting me to train more track events rather than field events,” she said. 

She is also fractions of a second away from breaking the school record in the 400 meters, which is a new event for her. “It’s hard because this is actually my first year of really running a 400, so I’m still unfamiliar with how to pace my sprinting, but I think I could do it for sure,” she said. Richter needs to run about 58 seconds to reach this goal and thinks it is attainable if she runs with others who push her. 

As for future goals, she hopes to break not just the 400-meter record, but also the 100 meter, which she is also fractions away from, in her remaining two years at Manual. She believes these are both possible, especially with the extra push from her teammates, which she says are the reason that she runs. 

Richter and her friend pose after a meet. Photo courtesy of Sophie Richter.

“They make everything super fun and I definitely push myself harder when I’m running with them or running at a meet,” she said. “In middle school, I didn’t really run for a school team because track was not a popular thing at my middle school, so running with Manual and LTC and creating new relationships with both the coaches and the other runners has been one of the best experiences I’ve ever had in my life.”