NEWPORT NEWS, Va. — Heritage High School's Madison Whyte will be the first to tell you she's not one of those "rah-rah" talkative leaders. "I really don't like telling people what to do or boss them around", she says. "Maybe they'll catch on, but if I have too?" Whyte laughed, then smiled.
The unassuming junior has blossomed from the indoor track season to the outdoor for the Hurricanes. Whyte picked up the sport from her older brother. Little did she know she would become one of the nation's best sprinters. She does a little of everything for head coach, Ray Pollard. The 100m, 400m, 55m, and 300m, but her joy is the 200m. Whyte feels that's the event that fits her best. "I'm more of a build up speed so the shorter races are a little more of a challenge for me", she says. "Especially for me being so long. It takes a little time for me to get going."
Pollard, who's been at Heritage since 1997, has seen plenty and feels Whyte is the real deal. "She is a student of her events", he says. "Self motivated. Makes a coaching job very easy."
Whyte comes off an indoor season in which she set three state records in leading Heritage to the Class 4 state title. Her 200m time of 23.66 seconds was the fastest in the nation. No surprise she's gotten the attention of colleges like Florida, L-S-U, and Southern Cal. Whyte says she's also pursing a life after track as a pharmacist. For her it's very personal. "Seeing my family have to get medication all the time and it's like without pharmacy techs, they'll be in pain and I don't want to see that. I want to be the person that can help people." Spoken like a true leader.