Passing a steel baton around a big oval as fast as possible may not seem like an outstanding thing to do.
However, when that baton makes its way around that big oval in 43.90 seconds through the hands of four individuals, it becomes something quite special.
The Keene State men’s 4×100 meter relay team did just that at the Jim Sheehan Memorial Invitational held at Fitchburg State University on April 6.
Why the time of 43.90 seconds is so special is because it is only .60 seconds away from the previous 4×100 meter relay set in 1975 of 43.30 seconds.
On top of all that, this had only been the third time the Keene State men’s track team had run a 4×100 relay within the past four years of competing.
The speedy 4×100 relay consisted of seniors Jared Hannon and Anthony Jennings, sophomore Clinton Mungeta, and first-year Angel Ramirez.
Anthony Jennings, a safety major at Keene State, talked about the emotions felt when he realized just how close the relay came to beating the previous record. “It was a good feeling because it was our first time ever doing the 4×100, and we only practiced handoffs once before that meet so it gives us a lot to look forward to,” Jennings explained.
Clinton Mungeta, a double major in elementary education and French, had similar things to say when asked about his own reaction to hearing about the close time.
“We’re working towards [breaking the record]. By the end of the season I know we are definitely going to get it,” Mungeta said, and continued by about the steps being taken in practice to shave off those last few milliseconds. “Right now we are focusing on doing handoffs and getting those perfect so we can get our time down… because handoffs are such a big part of the 4×100.”
Tom Pickering, the head coach for the Keene State cross country, track and field team, discussed his thoughts on the sprinting program as a whole and the improvement he has seen from the previous years.
“I think that the talent level that we have both developed and brought in in the last couple of years is stronger in sprinting, so we have more depth in sprinting but still not enough depth in sprinting. So, we are definitely heading in the direction of being a stronger sprints and hurdles school then we have been in the past…”
The Keene State track and field team will be competing next on April 20 at the Springfield Invitational at Springfield College. Start time is at 10 a.m.
Claire Boughton can be contacted