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Cardozo’s Francis sets track record

It looks like Queens residents now have a young track star comparable to Usain Bolt, the fastest man in the world.
Claudia Francis, a senior and veteran track athlete at Benjamin Cardozo High School in Queens, ran 2:15.6 in an 800-meters competition on Friday at the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn.
The competition was part of the first preliminary meet of the Colgate Women’s Games, the unofficial opening of the indoor track season that brought in over 11,000 athletic young women.
Francis, setting a 2:20.00 record for the 800-meters competition in the Elementary B division in 2004, partook in Friday’s competition that had participants from various locations throughout the tri-state area.
Several colleges and universities have begun offering Francis recruitment deals to represent their institutions for higher-level competitions.
Officials of the athletic program say that events like the Women’s Games are geared towards helping young athletes, like Francis, continue their careers at the university level.
Fred Thompson, founding meet director of the Colgate Women’s Games, felt that the opening events of this year’s competition were excellent in spite of early meet dates.
“Our opening meets are usually the last weekend of December, after the girls have had at least a few weeks more training,” Thompson said.
“Our schedule this season created an early competition and these results have been pleasantly surprising,” he added.
Francis began running at the age of seven, when she began developing a passion for track. At age nine, she ushered in the beginning of her career as an athlete, as she participated in her first race.
Her parents, Andrew and Kim, have emphasized the importance of balance between managing her schoolwork and maintaining a successful track record. Throughout the years, they have enrolled their daughter in numerous athletic competitions.
Francis is looking to continue pursuing a successful track career in college.

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