Top Distance Runners Post Record-Board Relay Mark

Led by a 4-minute and 21-second leg from Senior Cayden Hein, members of the track & field squad posted a virtual 4 x 1600-meter relay mark during the weekend of May 2 that would put them on the all-time record board.

11 members of the distance track squad participated in a state-wide virtual 4×1600-meter relay challenge held May 2-5, with both the boys’ and girls’ teams coming in 2nd place.

The event was put together by a group comprised of coaches representing various sections of the state in order to give athletes the chance to post times and compete while safely following shelter-in-place protocols.

Participating athletes were expected to run their mile time trial on their own and submit photo evidence of their race, including pictures of themselves at the start and finish in addition to the time and distance recorded on their watch. The marks also had to be made and reported within the May 2-5 time frame.

The “A” teams consisted of the top 4 performers from each school.

The South Bay’s Menlo School won the girls’ competition. Senior Emma Smith posted the top time for Campolindo, clocking 5.24.2.

The Campolindo boys’ squad, which averaged sub-4:30 for each leg, finished 2nd behind Amador Valley.
According to distance coach Andy Lindquist, the Cougar boys’ squad would have posted the 2nd fastest 4×1600-meter relay time in school history, had it taken place under normal circumstances.

“It doesn’t count, unfortunately, because it was run by 4 individuals, not in an actual relay in an actual meet. But it certainly says that they were as capable as any other team we’ve had to be one of the best distance relays in school history,” said Lindquist.

According to Lindquist, junior Owen Lekki and senior Dylan Cronin both had outstanding races with respective times of 4.26.6 and 4.26.0.

“Owen Lekki put up a really nice time and it was very inspiring to see him run,” said freshman Alex Lodewick, who contributed a leg by finishing his mile time trial in 4.33.5.

Lodewick said racing on his own was “much different” than other races he’s experienced: “The adrenaline wasn’t the same as it would’ve been if I was fired up to compete against other schools and other people. In addition, the bleachers were empty and cheering really helps me keep my head during the race,” said Lodewick, who ran alone in Bob Wilson Stadium.

“It was definitely harder than running with other people because I was having to purely pace off of myself and my watch, it added a little bit more intensity and challenge not having coaches yelling out splits or other people to push me,” said senior Ellie Guthrie, who was part of the girls’ A team.

While the boys managed to post an overall time on par with some of Campolindo all-time best relay squads, the girls suffered from a lack of participation from several key members of the team.

According to Lindquist, the relay results, “definitely show some potential once we get some other people healthy, but unfortunately, I think the lack of participation, particularly, the lack of participation by people who are coming back and competing for us next year, shows me that we need to get our act together.”

“If we’re going to have a productive fall season, I think it really means that people are going to have to take it on themselves and really get out there and start getting some more training,” Lindquist added.

The virtual relay also provided seniors with a final opportunity to compete. “It’s been a bummer because I feel like every year I’ve looked up to the seniors who get to finish out their time on the team and celebrate their last races and their career, and I feel like none of us seniors really got to think about or commemorate our last races because we didn’t realize that when we toed the line for the last time that it was the last time,” said Guthrie.

While the virtual relay offered a challenge that provided a purpose for continuing to train during the school closure, it was not all that some athletes had hoped the spring season would be.

“I definitely miss seeing my teammates, who I’ve been with for so many years the most. Though I’m still training and doing some time trials here and there, it’s not the same as having a real season,” added Guthrie.