Some of my greatest memories, and dare I say – moments, in my athletic career were at The Penn Relays. Today kicks of the 121st year of the three day relay carnival.
What’s so special about Penn? It’s the 45,000+ fans crammed into University of Pennsylvania’s Franklin Field, cheering the runners on for three days of amazing and intense competition.
It’s running, not for yourself, but for the three other girls (or guys) on your relay. (This is one of my favorite photos from Penn. It was my senior year, my last race wearing a Villanova singlet at Penn Relays, and I’d just anchored the 4 x 800 to victory.)
It’s the amazing rush of doing a victory lap if you win. The photo above was from my senior year, on the 2nd day of the meet when myself, Jen Rhines, Becky Spies and Krestena Sullivan won the 4 x 1500.
And being presented with a gold watch and “The Wheel” – an enormous wagon wheel looking plaque you receive as the winners of The Championship of America race. The photo above was our 4 x 800 team being presented with the third “wheel” we’d won that meet.
If you wear a Villanova singlet, it’s being a part of the rich Villanova tradition that is the Penn Relays, much like a rite of passage for a Villanova Track athlete. It’s the deafening roar as you race past the Villanova section that’s filled with VU greats of past and present. It’s the magic you feel when you step onto that track wearing the blue and white. And even if you are the underdog, in that moment you feel that you can achieve anything. In the photo above, I’m just finishing the 800 meter leg of the DMR and handing the baton off to Becky in the DMR. The DMR was the first relay of the meet, always kicking off our weekend of awesome.
And if you don’t come in first… It means shaking off the defeat because there’s another race that’s just as big to run tomorrow.
Today kicks of the 121st year of the Relays. Wishing all the Villanova Track and Field athletes a great #PennRelays. Let’s Go ‘Nova! (quote via Villanova.com)
– TL –