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We congratulate: Our champions who set the pace

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Shelby County boasts three state champs in track & field.

One of the things we like most to do is to congratulate our young people on their success stories, and this is the time of year when that happens most frequently – with graduation, scholarships and the never-ending lists on Awards Night at our high schools.

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But on Friday night, in a stadium in Louisville, three Shelby Countians stepped forward and established themselves at the best at what they do against their peers from around the state.

We’re talking about the Kentucky Class AA Track & Field Championship, where three of our finest proved the state’s finest.

This is nothing new for Caterina Karas of Collins High School. She won two state titles and narrowly missed a third in 2011.

Ms. Karas repeated this year – in the meet in which she was defeated last year, the 800-meter run – and was joined in receiving state medals by her own sister, Gabriella Karas, a seventh-grader competing for Collins, and Zach Shipley, a sophomore at Shelby County High School.

Gabriella Karas won in her sister’s old standard event, the 1,600-meter run, and Mr. Shipley completed his dominant season in the 300-meter hurdles.

Track is the foundation of athletics, the first competition, the feature of the Olympic sports and the total commitment of individual to craft.

To succeed takes not only athleticism and carefully developed technical skill but also an individual focus to a level that often defines the hallmark of success in life. This can be as instructive for what lies ahead as it is imperative to how we perform today.

Running and jumping are fundamentals, and to do so better than anyone is a true measurement of success, a clear definition of what is elite.

We congratulate the Karas sisters and Mr. Shipley for their accomplishment.

And we encourage them to continue to apply what they’ve learned in their races through life.