Superstar Spotlight: Julia Jackson


Jada Montgomery, Staff Writer

Local track star Julia Jackson has continued to progress on her athletic journey this winter and spring season. Hitting an impressive 54 second 400 meter time in early spring and being the anchor of the record-setting girl’s 4×4 team. 


Athletic improvement is often seen solely as building outward strength. Toning, building muscle and mastering new skills. But a large component that is sometimes left out that is a part of athletic improvement is mental strength. The strength to keep pushing yourself after failed attempts and gaining confidence in your abilities aids your improvement tremendously.  


“I feel like just the mental component because track is such a mental sport, especially running the 400 because it’s painful, you have to be able to get past that,” Jackson said. And that was definitely really hard for me at first.”


For Jackson, the 400 meter dash has always been her strongest event and she is consistently dropping new times and new personal records.


“I think it’s because it’s a blend of sprinting and sprinting endurance,” Jackson said. “Even though I’m not the fastest short sprinter, I’m decent, and then I can carry that speed for a long period of time. It has always been my best event.My last PR before this season was in the 56’s and now I’m in the 54’s. “ 


Another race Jackson has a stronghold on is the 200 meter dash. “Well, I guess this season alone the 200 because at the start of the season, I ran 25 three and now I run a 24.4,” Jackson said. 


Last spring season, which was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, was devastating for athletes across all sports.   However, with athletes being able to return to a somewhat normal season this year, lost recruiting chances may have been remedied. 


“I was so sad last year because we had just been coming off from a sectional win as a team for Scotch Plains,” Jackson said. “So I thought that we had so much potential to win sectionals again in the spring.But I thought it would have a much bigger impact than it did because I kept working hard and now everything’s back to normal for the most part.” 


As a junior, Jackson has already made and continues to make amazing strides (both literally and figuratively) in her high school career and might possibly continue to do so in college.