Friday, July 8, 2011

My 5 Most Memorable Relay Legs

The other day I was thinking back to the olden days and began to think about relay races. With all the relays that take place nowadays it made me want to list my top 5 most memorable relay legs. Its not a very impressive list but its all from memory because I have no running logs.

5. Mill City Relays 1988 leg # 1. Ran for the Greater Lowell Road Runners (GLRR) and ran the Nashua leg and had a good battle with Greater Boston's Gary Wallace as I out leaned him at the handoff for leg #2. I think I handed the baton to Art Demers. Someone may have more info on how we finished but I think we won never relinquishing the lead. I ran the inaugural Mill Cities way back when for the Merrimack Valley Striders and anchored in the first ever championship. Those results are somewhere in some serious archives.

4. Lynn Woods 10 mile relay (4 x 2.5 cross-country) 2009. Ran leg # 3 in 14:03 and handed the baton to Dave Dunham who took the CMS Master's team into victory with a course record time. Team members were Joe Shairs (low 13 minutes. Dan Verrington, myself and DD). DD has all the splits and total time. The course has since been changed but the race is still run every summer.

3. 1981 dual meet versus Lynnfield HS. 4 x 440. Cinder track. Meet hinged on the result of the mile relay and I ran the 3rd leg. I had run the 2 mile earlier but given that I was probably not pushed (10:30)I was ready to bust out a 55 and overtake some burly Lynnfield kid who had pushed me as I took the baton from my teammate. Bill Sullivan anchored us in to victory which made for a sweet bus ride home.

2. Plymouth to Provincetown relay (final year I believe) 1988. Again running for the GLRR and again given the first leg. 7 am start pouring rain, 10 mile leg over hilly course. Had a tremendous battle with Wayne Levy and Pat Gilhooly. No clue as to how fast we ran that leg in but it was fast. I remember running through massive puddles and having my shoelace come untied towards the end of the leg. Gilhooly and I sprinted to the finish and I think a second separated us at the handoff. We would finish 3rd as a team.

1. 1980 Class C State Relays. St. John's Prep. Danvers MA. Distance Medley Relay. As I type this I am having trouble remembering the members of the team. 440 leg. Senior Mike Prattt (team Capt), 880 John Costello (Junior) 1320 leg Bill Sullivan (Junior) Mile David Quintal (Junior). Damn I hope that is accurate. I received the baton 5 seconds behind in 2nd place. Now I wasn't the best miler but that day I ran a 4:35 to overtake the lead as I began my final lap. It was my only Mass State Championship but to do it with teammates was very cool.


  1. Great post. Unfortunately, there ain't a ton of relays for us out there once one becomes an adult. Yeah, there is the marathon relay things but they just don't have that allure that the HS relays had.

  2. The P to P was a great race, we (GLRR) took 3rd place. I ran the 14.6 mile leg against John Fiola, and passed through 10 miles in 50:30. We ran 7:00:16 to take third behind Nike Coub team and CMS, Art Demers was our anchor leg. Some of the guys on those teams - Stan Bickford, Colin Peddie, Bart Petracca, Richard Nerukar, Tom Ratcliffe, Chris Schille, Pat Gilooly, Tom Carleo, Rick Doiron, Mark Kimball, Wayne Levy, and Reno Stirrat. Some crazy fast runners!

    We also won the Mill City in 1988. I couldn't find any information on it other than we won in 2:28:08. I ran the 6.6 mile leg (2nd leg?) and ran 5:05 pace.

    Great stuff DQ!

  3. GZ, your right the HS relays were the best. Some of the most intense races of our lives:)

    DD, I knew you would be able to add some more info to those relays we ran together. How many miles was the MCR (back in '88)? I remember driving down to the finish of the P to P and couldn't believe you were rattling off those 5 min miles one after the other!