Cross-country and track & field coaches create competitive running program

Camille Kawawa-Beaudan

Redwood alumni Laura Schmitt and her son Jake, Redwood’s cross-country and track and field coaches, have finally accomplished their dreams of creating a track club for the community.

“We talked about starting a club, so it’s been in our minds,” Laura said. “I’ve been basically waiting for the right time, for when [Jake] was ready to do it.”

Designed for youths and adults, the Thoroughbred Track Club will focus on creating a competitive running program in Marin.

Redwood cross-country and track and field coaches, Laura Schmitt and her son, Jake Schmitt.
Coaches, Laura Schmitt and her son, Jake Schmitt are passionate about expanding the running community in Marin.

“What this will do is foster the idea of running on a club team at a young age, just like you would see a volleyball club, or lacrosse club, or soccer club,” Jake said. “There aren’t full cross-country seasons and track seasons that are available to club teams, so we really want to start that in Marin, and get the level of high school competition up to the elite status of the rest of the state and the country.”

In order to accomplish this goal, the club will train young runners from around the county.

“It’s for all middle school kids, fifth through eighth grade, and also after college,” Jake said. “The idea is to get the kids around the county ready so that when they go off to their respective high school programs, those coaches are getting kids who have been running and understand the sport.”

With a Marin track team available, passionate runners can receive proper training from a young age. The club will soon be extended to accommodate runners from all over northern California as well.

Additionally, the coaches hope to create an elite running team with people who ran in high school and college.

“They’ll run collegiately, then they’ll run for us, and we’ll have an elite racing program, as well as another program for adults who just want to run and be as fit as they can be,” Laura said.

The coaches hope to find Redwood alumni among these elite racers. The current Redwood cross-country members are not on the Thoroughbred team.

The club’s first practice is on Sept. 8, and they will practice on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays, in the morning for adults, and in the afternoon for children.