Davian's time signaled not only a personal and school-record for Burke, 17, but also ranks as the fifth-fastest time in Virginia-based meets and the 15th-quickest finish nationally among preps for 2023-24.
Burke topped his previous best-ever mark of 7.78 in the 55 hurdles and beat some fierce competition.
“It wasn’t by a lot, a couple of steps,” Burke said of the tight race. “It was kind of a shock, yeah. I was expecting a fast time, but not during the first couple weeks of the season.”
His success is no accident. Burke trains five days a week with the AAU squad Speed Time RVA under two coaches. Burke’s workouts center on endurance training, speed training and weightlifting. The results of his dedication have been obvious. He dashed to the finish line to capture the 110-meter hurdles and the 300-meter hurdles at the Virginia Independent Schools’ Track and Field Championships during both his sophomore and junior years.
Burke says he enjoys trying to master the mechanics of hurdling.
“Going over hurdles is more fun than a flat race for me,” Burke said. “Hurdles is more of a rhythm thing. A flat race is more of a specific technique.”
A Henrico resident, Burke has been at Banner since eighth grade and serves as the school’s Student Government Association’s treasurer. Prior to entering eighth grade, he remembers facing a choice between going to Banner or another private Christian school in Richmond.
“I had a gut feeling this is where I wanted to be,” said Burke, whose career aspiration is to become an engineer. “I am so glad that I chose Banner. I’ve made great friends here.”
Competition-wise, Burke is aiming to break his incredible 55-meter indoor mark.
“Oh, yeah, I can beat it (7.58 speed), am looking at 7.33” said Burke, a former multisport athlete who decided to focus solely on track and field starting with his freshman season. “I have plenty of more meets to do it in. I am expecting big things this season.”
If his recent accomplishments are any indication, Burke might just be on a stage that eclipses Banner’s and Virginia’s borders down the road. Burke notes that his long-term goal is to qualify for and participate in the 2028 Olympics Games in Los Angeles.