This will be a short post, but maybe of some interest to fans of high school track and field.
A few days ago, my friend Josh alerted me to the fact that Flotrack had posted a video of the 2016 Penn Relays H.S. Boys DMR championship on YouTube, so anyone can watch it without paying for a FloTrack subscription. It’s a fantastic race, and I won’t be offended if you click on the link, below, and skip the rest of this post.
Josh’s email reminded me that I’d been thinking about how some top H.S. runners prefer to run relay events at the big, end-of-season, national meets, rather than go for individual glory. (The two aren’t mutually exclusive, of course.) But then I got distracted by the following result from the boys 4 x 1 Mile championship race at New Balance Outdoor Nationals:
You would think this would have been big news in the small world of high school track. Two schools, separated by six-hundredths of a second both eclipse a record that has been on the books for 40 years. Isn’t that incredibly newsworthy?
Apparently not, and probably because the Temecula team (Great Oak H.S.) had destroyed the 4 x 1600m at the Mt. Sac relays earlier in the spring, running 16:52, which converts to something like a 16:59.6 4 x 1 Mile. So I guess it was old news. But the fact that TWO schools broke the old record in the same race, with Ogden (American Fork H.S.) winning, is still startling to me. And the story also has at least two local angles:
First, Wellesley H.S. placed 6th in what has got to be a MA record 17:31.08 (I’m too lazy to confirm that it is, indeed a record).
Second, one of the runners on the 1976 South Eugene team was Bill McChesney, brother of Newton South coach Steve McChesney, who at one time owned part of the 4 x mile record.
Maybe someone reading this blog will offer more insight into why this wasn’t a huge deal. It seems pretty cool to me.