World War II veteran and New Jersey native Lester Wright made it known that age is truly just a number following his record-breaking performance in the Penn Relay’s senior master’s division a couple of weeks back.
According to PEOPLE, the 100-year-old athlete set a new world record for his age group’s 100-meter sprint after crossing the finishing line in 26.34 seconds. That was recorded as the fastest finishing time for a 100-year-old.
“It was pretty nice to be able to do this at age 100,” Wright told the Asbury Park Press. “When I came here I was a little bit nervous, but when I saw the crowd and everything I fell right in with it.”
Wright decided to become a runner after managing a dental lab with his wife for nearly four decades, per NJ.com.
“If you’re going to go out to run a race, you should really run the race to try to win,” Wright told WTXF. “I don’t know how you can run to be second or third.”
John Wall, who is Wright’s grandson, also said the centenarian has the full support of their family. “Everybody is elated,” Wall said. “They’re excited he’s doing it. They want to be part of it.”
Donald Pellmann previously held the record for the 100-meter dash with a finishing time of 26.9 seconds, Huffington Post reported. Pellmann set that record in 2015.
Asked if he felt exhausted after crossing the finishing line, Wright said he was just getting started. “At 100 meters, I feel like I’m just getting started,” Wright told the Asbury Park Press. “I thought this was nice, but I wanted a longer race.”