Gary Martin, a senior at Archbishop Wood High School Warminster, Penn., broke a prestigious track and field record at the Pennsylvania Catholic League Championship on Monday by running a mile in under four minutes. Martin's run broke a record that had stood for nearly 60 years.
Martin ran a mile in 3:57:98 without the aid of a pacer, breaking a record that had been set by Jim Ryun in 1965.
Ryun became the first high schooler to run a mile in under four minutes in 1964, then broke his own record five times before graduating. Ryun's time of record was 3:58.3, a mark which Martin broke by less than a second.
Martin is now the 14th American high school athlete to break four minutes, and his time now ranks third all-time in outdoor runs. It should be noted, though, that Ryun was the only athlete to do so in high school-only competition, without the use of a pacer.
AMAZING feat by @ArchbishopWood's Gary Martin who ran a sub 4-minute mile today at the Philadelphia Catholic League Outdoor Championships. He ran it in 3:57:98!— Jamie Apody (@JamieApody) May 15, 2022
Martin becomes just the 14th American high school athlete to break 4 minutes, and is now 3rd all time outdoors! WOW!!! pic.twitter.com/hC2DCgKsX1
Martin's run was a major milestone he prepares to attend the University of Virginia upon graduation. Speaking about his long-term goals, Martin hopes to become an Olympic athlete.
"I'd like to think that it's not crazy for me to say that it's a dream now," Martin told CBS News. "Obviously, I'm still a long ways away and have some work to do, but I'm confident in my ability. I have the dream, now I just have to put the work in and chase it."
Based on his beating Ryun's mark, Martin's dreams may very well be in reach. After his record run in the 1960s, Ryun went on to compete in three Olympic finals, winning silver in 1500m during the 1968 Mexico City Olympics.