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Track and field

AAU Junior Olympics

Thousands of young athletes will spend the next week running, jumping and tumbling in Southeast Michigan.

The region is hosting the 51st annual AAU Junior Olympics. Events are taking place in various locations.

Paul Campbell is the games national chairman. He says the Junior Olympics is a stepping stone to a college scholarship for many athletes.

“Not all of them, but a good percentage of them will go on to college and get that college scholarship,” says Campbell.

Barbara Lucas

 

As the Olympics approached, Ann Arbor was a hive of training activity for a group of New Zealand athletes. They were drawn to the University of Michigan for the chance to work with retired men’s track and field coach Ron Warhurst.

Warhurst helped New Zealand runner Nick Willis win a silver medal in the 2008 Olympics. Willis' success encouraged countrymen Julian Matthews and Hamish Carson to travel from New Zealand to Michigan and work with Warhurst in the hopes of qualifying for their first Olympics.

Warhurst’s coaching paid off — Willis, Matthews and Carson all flew to Rio to compete in the men’s 1500 for their country.