ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – City councilor. Secretary of State. Superintendent. Life-long pole vaulter.
For 20 years, Brad Winter has served as a city councilor in Albuquerque. Right now, he’s the longest sitting city councilor in Albuquerque.
But every Thursday, you can Find Winter perfecting every jump and every land from every athlete. He’s a coach and has been for years, and if he’s not coaching he’s the one pole vaulting in a friend’s backyard. “My wife, for one, thinks, ‘Gosh, Brad you’re going to have to stop one day,'” he said.
But for Winter that day is definitely not today. “I’ve been pole vaulting for 50 years,” he said. Seven knee surgeries later, the 67-year-old is still competing. “I tell everybody that it’s what I do best,” he said.
To this day, Winter remembers how it all started. “We started pole vaulting with a broomstick,” he said. “My dad and I would be out there every weekend.”
That led to Winter competing in high school at Highland. Then, in college at the University of Oklahoma. But these days, you can catch him in the national spotlight. “I was in National Senior Games two years ago in Birmingham, Alabama,” Winter said. Where he placed second. “My age group is 65-69, so I had just turned 65, so I was the young guy in the age group,” he said.
Two years later and the 2019 National Senior Games are about to kick off in Albuquerque on Saturday. “I know one of my friends just got into the age group and he’s tough, so I’m kind of looking forward to being in the 70-year-old age group” Winter joked.
While he says the sport isn’t for everyone, his friends say it will be tough to beat this hometown boy in his own backyard. “I’m looking to go 10 feet,” he said. “You never know, I might get lucky and get that 11, so you never know.”
Winter’s competition day is Sunday at noon.