By Mike Cugno

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FT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – The track at Northeast High School in Oakland Park was the site of some serious competition.

Special Olympics athletes from about a dozen high and middle schools laced up and flexed their muscles for a fun-filled track meet on Wednesday.

“We get to adapt all these different field events as well. We do the tennis ball throw. We do the shot put but with a softball instead. So we adapt it to whatever level we need for every athlete to participate,” said Stephen Sheehint, manager of non-competitive programs.

Dozens were put to the test. Most couldn’t wait to brag about their blazing speed.

“Janaya how’d you run out there? Did you win, what happened,” asked CBS4’s Mike Cugno.

“I won! I won!” she said excitedly.

While Janaya was ready to bask in the glory of her victory she, like many others, remembered to cheer on her team.

“Westwood heights! Westwood heights! Westwood heights!”

There were a lot of laughs and hugs to go around as well as thanks to the event managers, teachers, and students who put the whole thing together.

“I think just overall they’re having fun. I’m very proud of my students, SGA (Student Government Association), the track team, who are out here – boys and girls – and they’re just helping out,” said teacher and SGA advisor Yalanda Verde.

“It’s very heartwarming knowing that everyone can come together and make everyone who’s not like them feel welcomed and help them to understand that even though they might lack a few things they’re still able to get involved,” said Adrianna Thompson, student chairperson of the Special Olympics event.

Wednesday’s event was just one of five track meets in the month of December. After that, they’ll move onto other sports in the Spring like basketball.

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