Julia "Hurricane" Hawkins 103-year-old is still setting records on the track

Julia "Hurricane" Hawkins is the oldest woman ever to compete on an American track.

And if this week's National Senior Games are any indication, the 103-year-old sprinter isn't slowing down any time soon.

Hawkins won gold in the 100-meter dash at on Tuesday with a time of 46.07 seconds — falling six seconds shy of her own over-100 world record but beating the second place finisher at the Games, 91-year-old Julia Manigo, by a full second. The Louisiana resident also ran the 50-meter dash Monday and finished in 21.05 seconds.

Hawkins was the only woman over 100 to compete in either event after a rare challenger, Hollyce Kirkland of Tennessee, withdrew due to an injury. She was also scheduled to compete in the 200-meter dash on Thursday.

"As you get older, you need challenges," Hawkins told The Albuquerque Journal last week. "You need passions. I think you need to have a lot of passions because they keep you alive and they keep you alert."

Hawkins has said she took up running because she thought it would be fun to try to run the 100-meter dash at the age of 100. Previous cycling experience — and tending to the acre of property she owns in Louisiana — has helped her stay fit, she's said.

"I hope I’m inspiring (others) to be healthy," Hawkins told KRQE-TV, "and to realize you can still be doing it at this kind of an age."

posted Thursday June 20th