EDWARDSVILLE - Edwardsville boys track sophomore Clayton Lakatos has had a good start to the 2023 track season. The future looks so bright for the young track and field star. Clayton is an iCAN Clinic Male Athlete of the Month for the Tigers.
Some of Clayton's track highlights in 2023 have been in the Illinois Top Times indoor meet on March 25 in Bloomington, having run the 60-meter hurdles in 8.81 seconds and was part of the 4x200 meter relay team with Kellen Brnfre, Zach Lane, and Darren Wilson, winning their heat at 1:30.56 and finishing second in their heat of the 4x400 meter relay with Lane, Wilson and Xavier Valdez at 3:29.63.
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In his season's outdoor debut in the Norm Armstrong Invitational at Belleville West High on April 7, Lakatos had a very good day, running the 110 meters hurdles at 16.30 seconds, then was second in the 300-meter hurdles, coming home at 40.52 seconds.
Clayton is the son of the Tigers' legendary boy track and field coach Chad Lakatos, who has an outstanding record at EHS and throughout his career. Clayton said his father is definitely "an inspiration" to him with the way he coaches, teaches, and conducts his life.
"It is awesome to have him as my coach and father," Clayton said. "He pushes me and I have been around track my whole life. My dream now is to be like the kids I watched when I was little.
"I felt really good ran 43 seconds in the 300 hurdles before this at the Armstrong Meet and I am glad I was 3 seconds faster in the Belleville West meet," he said after his Armstrong performance. I think I can go low 39 seconds in the 300s by the end of the season - that is my goal. I prefer the 300s over the 110 high hurdles, I am better at them."
Clayton is very optimistic about his team's chances in the new 2023 season.
"I like what our team is doing," Lakatos said in his interview. "It's just a good experience."
Clayton also felt that the transition from a successful indoor season would mean good things for Edwardsville during the outdoor season as well.
"I think it's going to be really good," Lakatos said. "We're really optimistic about how the season's going to go and I think it's going to be fun."
Lakatos himself has some specific and excellent goals that he would like to achieve in the upcoming season as well.
"I want to qualify for state for both hurdle events," Lakatos said. "So, 39 and 14 seconds would be goal times. And I also want to qualify in the 4x100 and 4x400."
For the Tigers themselves, Clayton also has a lofty, yet achievable, goal as well.
"The goal, obviously, is just to win state," Clayton said. "We think we can do it, so yeah, that's the goal."
Clayton said the Tigers are off to a good start for the new season and look ahead to possible bigger and better things as the season goes along.
"Yes, sir. Yep," Lakatos said with a smile.
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