Vanderbilt High School Invitational - Meet Review
By Ted Paduck, Tennessee Runner
When a good track meet is scheduled to be televised, I’m almost always sure to set the DVR or be around to watch it. Saturday, if you were at the Vandy HS Invite, you sort of got a chance to see a televised – and live – track meet. With the large screen and the cameras around the facility, you could watch the pole vault at one end and see the finish of the Mile at the other end. And truthfully, you did not want to miss a single event, single heat or any part of this meet. Georgia, Alabama, Kentucky, Arkansas and Tennessee athletes participated in this meet. There were sixteen National top 20s in the boy’s competition and the girls did a one up on the boys with seventeen National top 20s. And out of those, there were a huge total of 19 top 10 national marks set at this meet. In the end, there were 96 National Elite marks set at this meet and just about every event set a brand new top mark for TN athletes.
Those of you involved in track have probably heard about the Bring Back the Mile national campaign. Watching Kyandra Chandler of the Delta Elite tackle the Mile at this race for the girls and getting a 5:02 made me a believer that we really should be racing this distance more. But then the boys stepped up to the line and I now absolutely believe we should be racing this distance more. Aaron Thomas ran a 4:17.92 and got sixth place at this meet. But look at this, just a quarter of a second behind in fifth place was 4:17.67 by Alec Thomas. Coleman Churitch ran a 4:17.21 and Patrick Gregory came in 3rd with a 4:17 flat. Getting the runner up spot in this race was Taylor Caldwell with a 4:16.68 and Wesley Pectol won in 4:16.45. This race was tight from the start with this group literally running next to each other throughout the whole race. If you weren’t standing and cheering as these runners reached the finish line, then you must not have been in the building – this was what the Mile race is supposed to be – fast, exciting, and won in the last two or three steps! Wow!
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