The 2012 Drake Relays officially began on Tuesday with the Grand Blue Mile, but for our local high school athletes, the action begins today at Drake Stadium in Des Moines.
Along with Seddon in the Discus, Pella High’s Zach Buchheit will hit the track later this afternoon in the 3200 Meter Run. Buchheit says he’s looking forward to the competition he’ll face – some of which he ran against in cross country – but says he’s mostly trying to make it a time he’ll enjoy.
“There’s a lot of guys that I’ve ran with in the past [there], and it’ll be exciting to get out there and run with some of those guys for the last time,” said Buchheit. “The excitement level is definitely high. For me, it’s just trying to take it one step at a time and don’t get overwhelmed with the big stage – since this is my first time at Drake – but just enjoy it and have it be just like any other race.”
According to QuikStats, Buchheit’s time of 9:34 is the seventh fastest 3200 Meter time logged this spring, and should keep him right in the hunt for a strong finish.
Other local athletes qualified for the Drake Relays include Pella High’s Marielle Gaiser and Jace Versteeg, who will run Friday morning in the girls 100 Meter Hurdles and boys 110 Meter Hurdles, respectively. Seddon will throw again Friday morning in the Shot Put this time, and Friday evening the local area teams will have five representatives in the 4×100 Meter Relays. Pella Christian and Pella High both have girls squads that will compete, while Knoxville, PCM and Pella High boys will also have teams of four try and make their fastest circuit around the famed blue oval.
The final competitions featuring Marion County area athletes will be the Shuttle Hurdle Relay – in which the Pella High boys team will run – and the 400 Meter Hurdles, where Class 2A defending State Champion Jordan Van Roekel of PCM will compete. Stay tuned to KNIA/KRLS Radio and visit kniakrls.com for updates on the 2012 Drake Relays.