and Smiling. Team
2014 Completes Their Final 10 Mile Hill
Run in Preparation for
LA Marathon XXIX!
Santa Clarita, Saturday March 2nd
An Official Charity of the 2014 ASICS LA Marathon!
2012 LA County Board of Supervisors Award Winner!
2012 Nominee CA Governors Award for Physical Fitness!
2011 Special Recognition - Congressman Buck McKeon!
March 17, 2013
Students SOAR to New
Heights at LA Marathon XXVIII!
Sixteen Santa Clarita Valley students
successfully completed the 28th
running of the Los Angeles Marathon Sunday
March 17th amidst more than 24,000
other participants from all over the globe.
Supported by Students Off And Running (SOAR), a
division of the Santa Clarita Track Club, this
program dedicates itself to offering Santa
Clarita Valley youth the opportunity to
participate in a fully sponsored, 24 week
marathon training program while challenging
themselves to accomplish something truly
extraordinary in a non-competitive arena.
Having just finished his 20th
marathon himself, Head Coach and program
Director Kevin Sarkissian reflected on the day's
success as his last student runner crossed the
finish line Sunday, "We couldn't be more proud
of the level of determination our students
brought to LA today. With everything these kids
have going on at home and in school, just
committing to the SOAR program is tough enough.
Couple that with a long, tough training season,
training in every condition imaginable, and you
really get an understanding why today gives
collective testament to their inner strength.
It’s not often that you see the average teenager
getting out of bed at 2am on a Sunday morning to
run 26.2 miles," Sarkissian commented.
Less than 1% of Americans ever complete a full
marathon. SOAR is not about recruiting seasoned
Valley high school athletes, the program looks
for any kid with heart, kids that are willing to
commit to a truly life changing experience.
“I think the real power behind
SOAR’s success is the consistency and commitment
demonstrated by everyone tied to the program .
Parents, coaches, and community supporters alike
commit to being there mile for mile with each
and every student, regardless of ability or
personal conflict. This commitment remains
absolute from day one until our final runner
crosses the finish line safely on marathon day,”
Now celebrating its sixth year of success, the
results continue to impress with the program
reporting an astounding 100% marathon completion
rate for all SOAR participants since beginning
in 2007. In addition, parents, teachers, and
students alike report better focus in school,
increased positive social interaction, and
dramatic improvement in overall physical health.
Persons interested in supporting
or participating in the program should visit
www.soar-sc.org or contact Kevin Sarkissian at
661-877-7024 for more information.
The Road Less
"Coach, I don't know if I can
make it." She said it plainly as
her eyes welled with tears.
It was Mile 22, and 16 year old
Priscilla had just "hit the
wall", a term used by long distance
runners to describe a complete and utter
meltdown of mind, body, and spirit.
As I assessed her condition, trying to
find words of encouragement, I reflected
on the day's events. Priscilla was
having a tough day. Blistered by
Mile 6 and bandaged by Mile 10,
Priscilla had become dehydrated and
listless by Mile 19, and now at 22,
more than 6 hours into the race, she
stood at the edge of the abyss,
dangerously close to heat exhaustion.
"Listen kid, I believe in you.
This is just another race, and you and I
are going to finish this one together.
We're almost home. You own this thing.
Don't let it beat you."
She hung her head for a moment,
then met my gaze and managed a smile.
And in that moment, I knew that she had
dug deep, and found the strength and
inner courage to achieve the impossible.
Priscilla finished the
LA Marathon on Sunday in 7 hours 22
minutes and 5 seconds, forever changed,
and you, my friends, were with us every
step of the way. For that, I am
Of the 25,000 or so official
registrants, just over 17,000 would
complete the full 26.2 . The winner
would cross the line in just under 2
hours 14 minutes, receive a check for
$100,000 dollars, and drive home in a
As for me, I'll keep my 7:22,
the memories of one kid's courage, and a
smile shared at 22.
the long run,
Santa Clarita Track Club's
Students Off And Running
helps youth at risk
living in Santa Clarita
build life skills and
relationships with peers
and adults through
training for and
competing in a Marathon.
Santa Clarita Track
Club's Students Off And
aspires to be an after
school program available
to all schools
throughout the Santa
Clarita Valley that uses
the vehicle of marathon
training to empower
students and provide
them with tools for a
healthy and constructive
goal of SOAR is
for students to
participate in a
can aspire to,
away from the
program with a
to current and
how to set and
the fruits of
their hard work
the finish line
they need to
succeed both in
and outside the
the guidance of
Coaches who role
by training mile
for mile with
Coaches may be
members and need
not have prior
maintain a 6:1
Weekly goals are
set in a
with one mile
the first week
each week until
prepared to take
on the 26.2 mile
Coaches also use
this time to
and create a
can talk about
2013 Waivers / Trip Slips
VISIT TEAM 2014's SPONSORS!
Santa Clarita Track Club, Inc, 27900 Youngberry Dr, Santa
Clarita, CA 91350-1756
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posted on this website are for information only, and are not
official until ratified by the Valley Youth conference. They
are subject to change as we review them. Santa Clarita Track
Club, Inc. Program include: Youth Track and Field, Youth
Cross Country, Students Off And Running, SOAR, Located in
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