Hound’s running star a lesson in hard work, perseverance
Jack Vanden Heuvel was determined to make his mark from the moment he stepped onto a high school track as an untested freshman four years ago.
Since then the Healdsburg High School senior has done just that in a record-shattering running career in both cross country and track and field.
Last week, the four-year scholar-athlete was rewarded for his accomplishments on the track and in the classroom, signing a letter of intent to attend Westmont College in Santa Barbara.
“From an inexperienced runner who couldn’t nail pacing to a disciplined athlete who pays attention to the details (stretching, strength training, nutrition), Jack has found his rhythm,” HHS veteran coach Kate Guthrie reflected. “The main constant through it all is his healthy, insatiable competitive spirit. Jack is fully committed in the present moment — whether training or racing — he is all in all of the time.”
Vanden Heuvel has made up for lost time since losing his entire junior track season to the COVID-19 shutdown last year. In a spectacular, albeit shortened 2021 campaign, he’s already set all-time HHS records in the 800 meters (1:55.14), 1,600 meters (4:15.63) and 3,200 meters (9:25.83). He was recently ranked by local track historian Jim Crowhurst among the top ten all-time male high school runners in the Redwood Empire.
Vanden Heuvel will receive both academic and athletic scholarships while competing in track.