It was my son’s first outdoor dual track meet of the season, and an opportunity to measure progress from weeks of training and to have some fun with New Canaan Running Club teammates. Middle school teams from Newtown, Danbury, Wilton, Tomlinson (Fairfield), and New Canaan were scheduled to compete at Newtown High School on a Friday afternoon with gorgeous weather conditions.
The drive to Newtown was much longer than expected due to Friday rush hour traffic, and we and the other New Canaan Running Club members arrived with the meet having just started. The host Newtown Hawks allowed us to warm up for a few minutes. But after a 90 minute car ride, my son needed a little more time to warm up and mentally focus. Not one to complain, my son was excited as he headed to the starting line.
He had an outside lane assignment for the 1600 m, and with a fast opening 400 he moved up to the middle of the pack. With the lead runner from Wilton running a 4:50, followed by other older, bigger and faster boys, my son was tucked in behind the lead group and clocked a 5:53 PR. He was thrilled to run his fastest time yet in the first dual meet of the season.
With about 30 minutes before the 800 m, his next planned event, I told my son to stay loose and warm. Good advice as within minutes he was drafted to join his teammates in a 4 x 100 m relay. He ran the lead leg in a respectable 17 seconds, and the New Canaan Running Club relay team – three of the four runners were distance runners – finished in 68 seconds.
My son’s final event of the day was the 800 m, and again he had an outside lane assignment. Very much like the 1600 m, the opening lap was fast and my son once again had to move up from the back. He ran an awesome 2:46 PR with a negative split of 85 and 81. He closed fast the last 200 m and passed several kids to place in the top half.
The drive home was sweet and short. Sweet because the New Canaan Running Club, although a small and young team compared to the likes of Danbury, Newtown and Wilton, enjoyed their first dual meet of the season and scored some impressive performances. Short because there was no traffic heading south and dinner was waiting at home.
Start of the 1600 m, first race of the day
New Canaan in lane 5 of the 4 x 100 m relay
Leading off the 4 x 100 m relay, baton in hand
Start of the 800 m, last race of the day