List of centenarian masters track and field athletes


In the sport of athletics, centenarian competitors were recorded in the early 20th century, and have become increasingly common in the 21st century. This has occurred during a period of population ageing and increased longevity in wealthy countries, alongside a corresponding development of masters track and field competitions, such as the Senior Olympics and the World Masters Athletics Championships.[1]

Stanisław Kowalski and Hidekichi Miyazaki at age 105 are two of the oldest centenarian masters track and field athletes. Orville Rogers (age 100) stated, “I love the thrill of preparation and training,” he told Runner’s World. “When I compete, I am not just running against the people out on the track at that moment, I am running against everyone who has run the event before me. That is gratifying to me.”[2]

List of centenarians track and field athletes


Athlete Peak age Peak year Nationality Division Event(s) Achievements Ref.
Leslie Amey 101 2001  Australia Men Distance Amey won gold at the 2001 World Championship in Brisbane [3][4][5][6][7]
Nihal Gil 101 2016  Canada Men Sprints Gil competed at the 2016 inaugural Americas Masters Games in the sprints. [8][9][10][11]
Erwin Jaskulski 100 2003  Austria/ Ukraine/ United States Men Sprints Feb 2002 National Masters News: listed as an Austrian citizen living in Honolulu. [12][13][7]
Stanisław Kowalski 105 2016  Poland Men Sprints, Discus June 2015 Kowalski (age 105) competed in a sprint race. [14][15][16][17]
Helge Lonnroth 100 2017  Finland Men Field Lonnroth competed in the Javelin and Weight Throw at a meet in Finland July 2017. [18][19]
Hidekichi Miyazaki 105 2015  Japan Men Shot Put 23 Sept 2015 (one day after turning 105) Miyazaki competed in a sprint race. [20][21][7]
Giuseppe Ottaviani 103 2019  Italy Men Sprints, Field Ottaviani competed in the Long Jump in a meet in Italy Sept 2019. [22][23][24][7]
Alfred Proksch 100 2009  Austria Men Field Proksch competed at the 2009 World Masters Athletic Championships in the shot put and discus. [25]
Philip Rabinowitz 100 2005  South Africa Men Sprints and Racewalk Rabinowitz competed in the racewalk in a Mar 2005 meet in RSA. [26][27][7]
Mario Riboni 100 2013  Italy Men Shot Put Born 13 June 1913. [28][29][30]
Takashi Shimokawara 104 2010  Japan Men Javelin Shimokawara competed in the discus Sept 2010 in Japan. [31][32][7]
Fauja Singh 102 2013  India &  Great Britain Men Marathon Singh last competed at the 2013 Hong Kong Marathon. [33][34]
Ruth Frith 102 2012  Australia Women Field Frith competed Feb 2012 in the Hammer at a meet in New Zealand. [35][7]
Elfriede Fuchs 100 2020  Austria Women Shot Put Fuch competed in AUT on 19 or 20 Sept 2020. Fuch born 26 Aug 1920. [36][37][38][39][40][41]
Man Kaur 103 2019  India &  Canada Women Sprints and Field Kaur won gold at the 2017 World Masters Games in New Zealand. Kaur won gold in 200 m at 3:01.61 and SP at 2.21 at the Dec 2019 Asian Masters Championship in Malaysia. [42][43][44]
Florence Mary Storch 101 2014  Canada Women Javelin Storch won gold at the 28 Aug 2014 Senior Games at Sherwood Park, Strathcona County, Canada. She was born 10 June 1913. [45][46][47]

American men and women

John Whittemore at age 104 is one of the oldest American centenarian masters track and field athlete.

Numerous Centenarians have competed at the USATF Masters Outdoor Championships and the USATF Masters Indoor Championships. At the outdoor USA Championships, Orville Rogers (age 100 in 2018) and Julia "Hurricane" Hawkins (age 101 in 2017).[48][49] At the indoor USA Championships Everett Hosack (ages 100 and 101) competed at the 2002 and 2003 meets,[50][51][52] LeLand McPhie (age 100) at the 2014 meet,[53][54] and Orville Rogers (100) and Julia “Hurricane” Hawkins (102) at the 2018 meet.[55][56] As of 2020, no American centenarian have completed a combined event (decathlon or pentathlon).[57]

The USATF (American) Centenarian Award is presented periodically to outstanding athletes 100 years old and above. In 2017 Julia Hawkins received the award.[58][59]

Athlete Peak age Peak year Nationality Division Event(s) Achievements Ref.
Russell Clark 103 2004  United States Men Sprints 50 & 200 Meter Dash Meet Record Huntsman Senior Games. 2004 Huntsman World Senior Games were held October. Born 19 Nov 1900. [60][61]
William Finch 100 2012  United States Men Distance Finch held state (North Carolina) Senior Games records in the 800 & 1500 meter runs (M90 & M95) and 1500 meter (M100). [62][63][64]
Jonathan Foulke 107 1925  United States Men Runner 24 Sept 1925 in Los Angeles, a centenarian runner Jonathan Foulke (107 years old) won a foot race (distance and time are unknown). Foulke was born 3 Dec 1817. [65][66]
Everett Hosack 101 2003  United States Men Sprints, Field USATF Masters Hall of Fame Hosack competed at the 2003 Penn Relays. Dec 2004 Hosack was voted Masters Track and Field M100 athlete of the year. [67][68][69][70][71][72][73][74]
Robert Jones 101 2015  United States Men Field Jones competed at the June 2015 Tennessee Senior Games at Franklin, TN. [75][76]
James A Kales 100 (99) 2014  United States Men Field Competed at August 2014 Michigan Senior Olympics. Competed as M100 at age 99 under Senior Games rules. Born 24 Sept 1914. [77][78][79][80]
Tom Lane 100 1994  United States Men Field Born 21 June 1894. Died 18 Aug 1997. Lane competed at the 10 Sept 10 1994 Cal Senior Games in San Diego. Lane lived in San Diego. Lane was legally blind since 1988. [81][82]
Trent Lane 101 2011  United States Men Field Born 28 March 1910. Lane competed at the June 2011 Senior Games in Houston, Texas. [83][84][85][86]
Ben Levinson 103 1998  United States Men Shot Put American M100 athlete (age 103) competed in the shot put at the Nike World Games (Eugene, Oregon) on Aug 11, 1998. From Los Angeles, California, he was later interviewed by Jay Leno on the Tonight Show. [87][88][89][90][91]
Larry Lewis 102 1969  United States Men Sprints Lewis ran exhibition 100 yard dash in 17.8 at Cox Stadium June 1968 (age 101), and an exhibition 17.3 at Cox Stadium June 1969 (age 102). These marks were never ratified. Lewis was born in the summer of 1867. [92][93][94][95][96][97][98][99]
Waldo McBurney 100 2003  United States Men Sprints, Field Dec 2003 McBurney was voted American Masters Track and Field M100 athlete of the year. [100][101][102]
Leland McPhie 100 2014  United States Men Field Won gold medals in the weight throw, superweight throw and shot put in March 2014. [103][104][105]
E. Gerald Meyer 100 (99) 2019  United States Men Sprints Meyer won four gold medals at a 2019 Senior Games. [106][107][108][109]
D Paul Miller 100 (99) 2017  United States Men Sprints, Field Miller captured four gold medals at a June 2017 Senior Games. Miller age 99 competing under Senior Games rules competed with the M100 group. [110][111][112][113]
Donald Pellmann 100 2015  United States Men Sprints, Field USATF Masters Hall of Fame [114][7]
John Pugh 100 2013  United States Men Field Pugh's last competition was in 2013 in Cleveland, Ohio, when he won gold medals in the 100-year-old category in the shot put, and discus. [115][116]
Orville Rogers 100 2018  United States Men Sprints, Distance USATF Masters Hall of Fame [7]
Fordie Ross 100 2014  United States Men Field Ross' last competing was at a 2014 Senior Games. [117][118]
George Rowswell 101 2018  United States Men Field Rowswell last competed at a 2018 Senior Games (gold medal in the shot put). [119][120]
John Whittemore 104 2004  United States Men Field Whittemore competed (Javelin) at the Oct 2004 Club West meet in Santa Barbara. [121][122][123][124][125]
Frederick Winter 102 2017  United States Men Sprints, Field Winter was the first M100 American / Senior Games to complete a 100 meter dash in Minneapolis at their 2015 Senior Games. [126][127][128][129]
John Zilverberg 103 2017  United States Men Field Zilverberg (born 2 Aug 1913) won gold medal at the 2015 South Dakota Senior Games. He competed at 103 at the 2017 Senior Games and won four T&F gold medals. [130][131][132][133]
Ella Mae Colbert 100 2016  United States Women Exhibition 100 Meter Exhibition 100 Meter dash, near Chesnee, South Carolina. [134][135]
Julia “Hurricane” Hawkins 103 2019  United States Women Sprints, Shot Put Hawkins competed at the June 2019 National Senior Games in the sprints. [136][137][7]
Ida Keeling 102 2018  United States Women Sprints Keeling competed at the Feb 2018 Imperial Dade Indoor Track Classic in New York. [138]
Margaret White 100 1995  United States Women Shot Put, Discus Potentially the first American W100 athlete (age 100) competing 30 July 1994 in the shot put and discus. It appears that these marks were not submitted for ratification for records. White won gold at the 29 Jan 1995 Sooner State Games (indoor). Margaret White held the W95 world record in the SP. White won an American National "W95 Age Group" award in 1992. Margaret (Palmer) White (of Turpin, OK) was the mother of Masters Hall of Fame athlete Wendell Palmer (of Pampa, TX). [139][140][141][142][143][144][145][146]

Centenarian media coverage


  • 6 Feb 1995 Margaret White (age 100) was featured on Sports Illustrated (SI) that she competed at the Jan 29, 1995 Sooner State Games (indoor) in the shot put.[147][148]
  • Everett Hosack (100) competed at the Penn Relays in 2002. Philadelphia Inquirer stated "... the oldest ever to run at the carnival [Penn Relay] ..." and "The crowd of 50,827 took to Hosack right away. He received a standing ovation ..."[153] Later in 2002 Everett was a guest on The Jay Leno Show, "demonstrating his shot-putting prowess".[154]
  • In 2003, Waldo McBurney ran the 100 meter at the World Masters Athletic Championship in San Jose, Puerto Rico. The paper reports, "... he competes to show people you can still perform at an old age".[155] In 2004 the Hayes Daily News reported that he published a book "My First 100 Years: A Look Back from the Finish Line".[156]
  • Santa Barbara Round Table reports John Whittemore, "Holds numerous Track & Field Records over 75-year-old Class".[157] Book written by Art Linkletter states, "... Whittemore has been competing in track and field - and setting records since his boyhood ... was working out with weights daily and still thinking about new records".[158]
  • In 2015 Sports Illustrated (SI) reported, "100-year-old Frederick Winter of Holland, Mich., became the oldest man in National Senior Games history to complete the 100-meter dash".[159]
  • Ida Keeling appeared on an ESPN story, writer states "won't be stopping anytime soon".[160]
  • At the 2018 Masters National Indoor Track and Field Championship Orville Rogers (age 100) and Julia “Hurricane” Hawkins set 60 meter dash world records. Runner's World coverage stated, "Two Centenarians Steal the Show at USATF Masters Indoor Championships".[161]
  • June 2019 Express & Star news (out of Wolverhampton, England) reports, "At 103, Julia Hurricane Hawkins has cemented her title as the oldest woman to compete on an American track after finishing the 50- and 100 meter dashes at the National Senior Games in New Mexico".[162]
  • In 2020 BBC reports a story about the "Centenarian Olympics" featuring Julia "Hurricane" Hawkins and the benefits of continuing sports and other activities.[163]

Centenarian videos

  • In 2018 at the Masters National Indoor Track and Field Championship Orville Rogers (age 100) and Julia “Hurricane” Hawkins set 60 meter dash world records. Both of the races were aired by CNBC sports: (link)[164]
  • Polish athlete Stanislaw Kowalski (age 104) set a (former) record for the 60 meter dash. Facebook video: (link)[165]
  • Sept 2015 a Times of San Diego story and video on Don Pellmann's record setting week (five records). (Link)[166]
  • In 2016 NBC Sports captured Ida Keeling (age 100) competing in the Penn Relays. Short video: (Link)[167]
  • At the 2016 Pan American Games in Vancouver, Canada, Man Kaur (age 100) race was captured on YouTube: (Link)[168][169] At the same meet, in a Sports Illustrated story "when she crossed the finish line in Vancouver, her competitors - many of them in their 70s and 80s - were there to cheer her on", and Five-time Olympian Charmain Crook refer to her stating "I know that it's inspired me".[170]
  • In 2019 ESPN featured Julia “Hurricane” Hawkins (age 103) in a short video: (link)[171]

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Further reading