With the conclusion of our two final events, the ECAC and IC4A college 4×400 heats, we have reached the end of our 115th Penn Relay Carnival.  We’ve had great weather, great spectators, and great international internet viewers like yourself.  On behalf of Carnival Director Dave Johnson, we appreciate you visiting our meet blog, and we will see you next year in 2010.

The Penn Relays, America’s oldest track meet since 1895.  Harvard won the first 4×400 in 3:33, and Florida State won the 115th in 3:01.

We’ll see you soon enough.

(for those of you in the Mid-Atlantic area, don’t forget the Heps/Ivy conference championships are in two weeks right here at Franklin Field)

Quick all-in-one-place recap:

Athletes of the Meet

College Men’s Relays
Matthew Gibney anchored Villanova to its 23rd distance medley relay championship, but its first since 2001, running down and passing Arkansas’ Dorian Ulrey. His come-from-behind 1600-meter split was 3:58.4 as the Wildcats held off the Razorbacks by two seconds.

College Men’s Individual Events

Jeremy Hicks of LSU posted the first eight-meter long jump at the Penn Relays in five years, soaring 26-3 to win that event. That distance is the seventh-best in Penn Relays’ history.

College Women’s Relays

Sarah Bowman played an enormous role in Tennessee becoming just the third school in Relays’ history to sweep the women’s distance relays. Bowman ran on all three victorious relays for the Lady Vols, anchoring the distance medley and the 4×1500, and running the third leg on the 4×800. Her 1500 split of 4:10.2 is the second fastest ever at the Relays and UT set Penn Relays and collegiate records in both the 4×800 and 4×1500.

College Women’s Individual Events

Rachel Laurent of LSU went higher than any woman in Franklin Field history as she won the pole vault championship with a clearance of 13-10 1/2. That was 11 inches better than her nearest competitor.

High School Boys’ Relays

Anthony Kestelac, the anchor of Albemarle’s (Va.) national record setting boys 4×800, ran the fourth fastest split in Relays’ history (1:49.33), giving his team an incredible time of 7:30.67. The national record in the 4×800 had been set at the Relays before, but it was back in 1921 when Cedar Rapids of Iowa ran 8:25.4, almost a minute slower than Albemarle.

High School Boys’ Individual Events

Sophomore Nick Vena of Morristown (N.J.) won the shot put (for the second year in a row) with a throw of 72-2 1/2 inches (22.01 meters), breaking the Relays record by nearly five feet and becoming the first sophomore to ever break the 70-foot barrier.

High School Girls’ Relays

Ristananna Tracey was a double anchor champion for Edwin Allen of Clarendon, Jamaica. She ran a 54.1 to bring home the 4×400 and 2:07.9 to deliver the 4×800. The 4×8 time of 8:44.06 was the fourth-fastest ever at the Relays.

High School Boys’ Individual Events

It was a sister act as Edwin Allen’s Nikita Tracey won the intermediate hurdles in 57.44, the second fastest ever run at Penn. She fought off the cold and wind to run a faster time than the collegiate champion. Her sister Ristananna was the award winner for relay events.

Attendance Report

Thursday — 24,315 (fourth all-time)
Friday — 39,501 (third all-time)
Saturday — 47,904 (sixth all-time)
Three-Day — 111,720 (fifth all-time)