Construction Completed on Newly Renovated Track


Lamont Jones

The Jopson Athletic Complex received a makeover ahead of the outdoor track and field season. The construction occurred between May and November.

Nathan Good and Hunter Aversa

Bridgewater, Va.- Renovations to the track at the Jopson Athletic Complex have been completed in time for the 2023 track and field season after summer and fall construction to the facility. 

Construction on the track began after last year’s ODAC championships and finished in mid-November. The renovations feature a redone track, steeple pit, two additional jump runways and javelin runway. 

“The track itself looks nicer and feels better to run on,” said senior Michael Sheets. “I am just excited to compete on it come March. I run the 200 meter, 400 meter and throw javelin, so I am excited to use the new javelin runway.” 

In addition to the improved functionality of the track, the new steeple pit allows the Jopson Athletic Complex to host future ODAC conference meets. 

“We will be able to host ODACs now that we have a steeple pit and all the throwing areas,” said junior Elena Larcombe. “We are hosting our conference meet for the next two years.”

During the construction, members of the track and field team practiced at different locations during different times. With renovations complete, the track and field team has enjoyed being reunited for practices. 

“For a while, we had to run at Turner Ashby High School or on Mapp Field,” said Sheets. “This separated the sprinters from distance runners and throwers, so we could never practice all together. Since the new track was finished, we have been able to all practice at the same time and at least see each other, so it has brought our team closer together.”

view of Jospon field and newly renovated track
The renovations to the track are clear from the stands, which seats 3,500 fans. In addition to track and field, the Jopson Athletic Complex serves the Eagles football, field hockey and lacrosse teams. (Lamont Jones)

This is not the first time the Jopson Athletic Complex has had a renovation. Since 2013, the facility has undergone several major changes to improve conditions for fans, athletes and coaches.

According to the official athletic website of the Bridgewater College Eagles, FieldTerf was added in 2013 to replace the natural grass on the football field. Additionally, a throwing cage was installed, servicing shot put, discus and hammer competitions. 

While outdoor track and field begins in March, indoor track and field is in full swing for the Eagles. 

This January, the men’s and women’s teams  competed in The Kaye & JJ Smith Invitational, The Finn Pincus Invitational and The Patriot Games.

“The current season is going pretty good,” said Sheets. “A lot of the team is hitting good times and distances. We are getting closer and closer to meeting our goals.”

Among the season’s successes is Peter Fulton, who garnered a program record in the weight throw with 18.10 meters, placing first among the other Division III throwers at The Patriot Games. 

The track and field team will next compete in the Camel City Invite in Winston-Salem, Nc. on Feb. 3 and 4. 

The first outdoor track and field meet for the Eagles will be the Washington and Lee Track and Field Carnival on March 18. Additionally, the newly renovated track will host its first outdoor track and field meet on March 25 during the Doc Jopson Invitational, and again on April 8 for the New River Meet.