TOP OF THE TOWN – Ron Atkins, a 1992 graduate of Bremerton High School where he was a key part of a winning relay at the state meet, is still running at 47. And he has no plans to slow down.  Competing at the USATF Masters Championship in Ames, Iowa on the Iowa State University track, Atkins, who now lives in Tacoma, won the 100 and 200 and finished second in the long jump. He ran the 100 in 11.24 on July 24 to beat Jeffery Mack, who had beaten Atkins in the  prelims with a 11.1 but slowed down to 11.30 in the finals. Atkins is ranked No. 2 in the United States (behind Mack) by USATF and third in the world in the 100. On July 25, Atkins captured first place in the 200 with a 22.8 time, beating Mack once again. Atkins is ranked the No. 2 200 USATF runner in the world for his age group (45-49). He jumped 19-06.75 to take second in the long jump to world leader Lee Adkins Jr., who went over 21 feet. Atkins only took two of six possible jumps because the event overlapped the 100. Atkins also ran the opening leg of a non-club 4 by 4 relay, clocking a 55.4 split for his 400. The team won the relay with a time of 3.57.12. Atkins has continued to run since high school and is now coaching youngsters within the Kitsap Fliers Track Club he co-formed.  He is giving young athletes the support that he says he didn’t have when he ran, starting when he was 15. “I am running as fast as I was at 15,” says Atkins. “That is a gift. And I’m not going to waste my gift. I will continue to promote the message I’m trying to get across that no matter where you are or where you are from, if you believe in yourself and work hard you can achieve anything. I live under the philosophy of Steve Prefontaine that giving less than 100 percent is a waste of your gift. As long as I’m blessed with ability to run, I’m going to run.” He also has a goal to pass along his positive vibes and messages to young athletes to inspire them and to add luster to track and field. “All dreams are possible,” Atkins insists. “I’m just working the path I have been on and messaging the kids and young adults to be motivated by what I do. Their coach is a national sprint champion and one of the fastest in the sprints in the world and that gives them confidence that they can achieve as well.” In the spirit of that, Atkins is taking 11 of his student-athletes to Humble, Texas (near Houston) this weekend for the AAU Junior Olympics. Among them is Boise State-bound Alyssa Cullen, Kymeal Gaulden,  a rising senior at Central Kitsap and Isaiah Archer, a Seattle-Pacific-bound athlete from Central Kitsap. Cullen will run the 100 and 200, triple jump and run relays, Gaulden will run the 100, 200 and relays and Archer will run the 400 and 800. …  Brandon Funston, former Sequim athlete, and the leading face of fantasy sports will be the Kitsap Athlete Roundtable’s guest at 6 p.m. on Aug. 19 at the 19th Hole Bar & Grill in Chico. Cost is $20 and includes Pizza and salad. There will be a no-host bar. Proceeds from KAR events are donated to youth and amateur athletics. OK, that is enough for today. Stay safe.

Be well pal.

Be careful out there.

Have a great day.

You are loved.