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Old Lyme’s Zoe Eastman-Grossel heads to the track and field Junior Olympics

As we all prepare to watch the Olympics, 14-year-old Zoe Eastman-Grossel of Old Lyme is preparing to compete in the Junior Olympics. After missing the 2020 season due to the pandemic, the sprinter-jumper returned to the track in 2021 with Lyme Old Lyme Middle School and Capital City Track Club. She departs for Jacksonville, Florida with her Capital City teammates to compete July 26-Aug. 1.

Zoe has made the most of her track season. She is undefeated in the 55-meter hurdles, the 100-meter hurdles, and the 200-meter hurdles. In middle school, on her home track, she posted a hand-timed best of 9.18 seconds, improving on the Lyme-Old Lyme High School record. In youth meets with Capital City Track Club, she ran a personal best of 15.97 seconds in the 100 hurdles. Her time places her first among her age group in the state by over four seconds, first in the region (New England and New York) and 18th in the U.S. In the 200 Hurdles, she also ranks first in both Connecticut and the region, and 21st in the country among 13- and 14-year-old girls. Eastman-Grossel also competes in the long jump where she jumped a personal best of 15 feet, 6 inches this season, ranking her third in Connecticut.

Even with all of her success this season, Zoe remarks that her favorite part of track is spending time with her teammates at practice and meets. She has especially enjoyed being part of the 4x100 relay team with Capital City. The girls relay won the Middle School State Championship with a time of 53.72 seconds, setting a meet record and a week later breaking the club record with a time of 51.12. The relay team looks forward to continued time together facing strong competition in Jacksonville.

Eastman-Grossel credits her success to great coaching and hard work. With Capital City Track she is coached by a team of coaches that includes hurdle coach Gabriella Ade-onojobi who is sending three athletes to the National Championships. Prior to the club season, Zoe received outstanding guidance from her middle school coaches and excellent coaching from Emily Mauro, assistant Connecticut College Track and Field Coach.

Capital City youth track team is a community-based program in Hartford offering age specific training and competition for youth ages 6-18 years old. The team will send 25 athletes to compete at the Junior Olympics.

Upon return from Jacksonville and a well-deserved rest, Eastman-Grossel looks forward to the fall soccer season at Lyme-Old Lyme High School.

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