Horns looking to build on Texas Relays success

Will Anderson

The Longhorns found success at the Texas Relays in Austin from April 6 to 9, one of the biggest and most important annual track meets in the American Southwest.

Now they head to Philadelphia today for the historically significant Penn Relays, another event that’s always circled on the calendars of college coaches.

The first Penn Relays were held on April 21, 1895, forty years before the first Texas Relays. The Pennsylvania event is now the longest-running uninterrupted collegiate track meet in the country.

The event averages one race every five minutes during 33 hours of competition, and this year expects more than 22,000 entries.
Texas is no stranger to the Penn Relays: The program’s nine 1,600-meter relay titles is the most in the history of the event, and the school’s 1985 1,600-meter relay team still holds the meet record with a time of 3 minutes, 27.64 seconds.

Texas leaders, including juniors Angele Cooper and Stacey-Ann Smith, freshman Danielle Dowie, senior Chantel Malone, turned in strong performances at the Texas Relays and will look to perform well in the fourth-to-last event of the season.

Cooper and Dowie won first and third places, respectively, in the 400-meter hurdles on Sunday of the Texas Relays. Texas relay teams also took third in the 400-meter relay, the 800-meter relay and the 1,600-meter relay on the final day.

The last time out, at the Michael Johnson Classic during the weekend in Waco, Texas took just one track event (the 1,500 meter) and one field event (the high jump).

Texas athletes will participate in many of the events. While none of the Longhorns will compete in Wednesday’s heptathlon, the team hopes to start strong on Thursday in events including the 400-meter hurdles, the 400-meter relay, the 1,600-meter relay and the 5,000-meter race.