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The art of the OWU relay

Juliana Snyder February 10, 2016 Sports No Comments on The art of the OWU relay

Freshman sprinter Quentin Broomfield watches junior sprinter Colin McShane take the baton during the 1600-meter relay at their recent Triangular meet.

Freshman sprinter Quentin Broomfield watches junior sprinter Colin McShane take the baton during the 1600-meter relay at their recent Triangular meet. Photo by Leia Mizas.

Julia Snyder, Transcript Reporter

Running in a relay is considered an honor in track and field at Ohio Wesleyan University.

Kris Boey has been the head coach of the  track and field team for the past 14 years. He said that having a strong relay team says a great deal because it shows the depth and quality of the team.

“Relays are fun, they’re exciting and they’re something that, as a team, we put a premium on because it makes a strong statement of your team and the culture should be that you earn your way onto a relay,” Boey said. “It’s a desirable thing. We take pride in that.”

There are several different relay events for outdoor and indoor track, but the same distances and strategies are used for the boys and girls.

There are three different relays in outdoor track: a 4×200-meter relay, 4×400-meter relay and a distance medley. There are only two relays for outdoor track: a 4×100 and 4×400-meter relay.

“The 4×100 is a pure sprint. It’s the trickiest because a hundredth of a second matters and exchanges have to be perfect,” Boey said. “It’s an extremely exciting race.”

Junior Colin McShane said, “The 4×4 is the most fun event for me because it’s the very last event of the track meet, and usually big meets come down to whoever wins the 4×4. To be a member of that relay is special because the whole team is watching you and depending on you guys to run well and basically win the meet.”

A distance medley consists of four runners who run 1200 m, 400 m, 800 m and 1600 m, respectively.

“The distance medley is unique because of the four different distances. The exchanges can be a little tricky because runners are coming in at different speeds,” Boey said. “It becomes really strategic on where you put your people.”

There are many variables that go into choosing runners for a relay. Boey said that he wants the type of person who wants to have the baton in their hand, someone who is very team-oriented.

Both McShane and senior Sara Johnson agree that running a relay is less pressure and more fun.

“For a relay, I don’t get nervous,” Johnson said. “You’re not in the blocks, you’re like chasing someone and it’s with three other girls, so it’s more fun that way.”

McShane said, “When you’re on a relay, it really brings in the team aspect of the sport. I always run better in a relay because you feel like the guys depend on you more. My other roommate, Adam [Turner], has run the 4×4 with me since I was a freshman. It makes it more fun to do a relay with somebody you’re really good friends with.”

Sophomore Griffin Peyton  is new to the team.

Peyton said, “Running a relay really establishes our team motto, ‘we stand alone, together,’ which is nice. I like that.”


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