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High School Track Runner Breaks Longstanding Mile Record

A picture of the Olympic Rings in South Korea

GANGNEUNG, SOUTH KOREA - FEBRUARY 8: The Olympic rings is seen in Gangneung town, near the venue for the Speed Skating, Figure Skating and Ice Hockey ahead of PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympic Games on February 8, 2017 in Gangneung, South Korea. (Photo by Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images)

One of the most prestigious, longstanding records in high school track & field gained a new owner this month over at Archbishop Wood High School in Pennsylvania.

This past Saturday, Archbishop Wood senior Gary Martin set a record by running a mile in 3:57.98 with no pacer aid. His feat broke the record previously held by Olympic silver medalist Jim Ryun in 1965. Ryun's mark was 3:58.3.

With his accomplishment on Saturday, Martin also became just the 14th high school athlete to run a mile in less than four minutes. His time ranks third in all-time for outdoor runs of that length without a pacer. 

Speaking to CBS News, Martin said that he hopes to parlay his success in high school into a shot at competing in the Olympics. He's preparing to attend the University of Virginia.

"I'd like to think that it's not crazy for me to say that it's a dream now," Martin said. "Obviously, I'm still a long ways away and have some work to do, but I'm confident in my ability. I have the dream, now I just have to put the work in and chase it."

It's a good omen for Gary Martin's Olympic ambitions that he broke the record. Jim Ryun, who previously held the record, won silver in the 1500m race in the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City. 

Congratulations, Gary!