Drake Relays
SportTrack and field
Founded(First held in April of 1910)
CountryDes Moines, Iowa, United States
QualificationWorld Athletics Silver Level
Sponsor(s)Xtream powered by Mediacom
Related
competitions
Penn Relays
Official websitedrakerelays.org

The Drake Relays (officially the Drake Relays presented by Xtream powered by Mediacom) is an outdoor track and field event held in Des Moines, Iowa, in Drake Stadium on the campus of Drake University. Billed as America's Athletic Classic, it is regarded as one of the top track and field events in the United States.[1] In 2020, the Drake Relays was named a Silver Level event on the World Athletics Continental Tour, one of only two competitions in the United States to earn Silver Level status.[2]

History

The inaugural Drake Relays were held in 1910. The first meet drew just 100 spectators and 82 athletes, all from Des Moines-area colleges and high schools. The second year attendance grew to 250 athletes and a crowd of some 500 spectators. In 1914, the Relays saw its first world record set. By 1922, the Relays had expanded to two days and drew 10,000 fans, becoming the first major track and field event broadcast on radio. For the 1926 Relays, Drake Stadium was built on the site of the prior host, Haskins Field.[3]

Women's events were added beginning in 1961 with Wilma Rudolph competing in the 100 meters.[4] The 1966 Relays began a streak of 48 consecutive Saturdays with a sellout.[5] In 1969, a $175,000 tartan track was installed. The events at the Relays would go all-metric in 1976 and the track was rebuilt as a 400-meter oval in 1978. It was resurfaced in 1983, and in 1988 was renamed the "Jim Duncan Track" to honor the long time relays public address announcer.

Hundreds of Olympic gold medalists have competed at Drake Stadium including Bruce Jenner, Michael Johnson, Carl Lewis, Jesse Owens, Wilma Rudolph, Frank Shorter, Gwen Torrence, and Jeremy Wariner.[6] Hundreds more Drake Relays competitors have gone onto compete in the Olympic Games, including 113 at the 2012 Olympic Games.[7]

In 2006, a Friday evening session was added.[8] In 2010, the Grand Blue Mile, a one-mile road race in downtown Des Moines, was added.[9] The week of festivities currently opens with a parade on Saturday, continues with a Beautiful Bulldog Contest (Drake's mascot) on Sunday, the Grand Blue Mile on Tuesday, and an indoor pole vault on Wednesday[10] with the decathlon and heptathlon beginning Wednesday and concluding alongside the distance carnival on Thursday.

Midwest grocer Hy-Vee became the presenting sponsor beginning in 2013, enabling the Relays to offer a $50,000 purse in running events and $25,000 purse in field events, making the Drake Relays the richest athletics event in the United States. ESPN2 aired 90 minutes of live-action coverage that year and ESPN3 aired an additional two hours.[11] The 2013 field saw 25 Olympic medalists compete.[12] Currently NBCSN airs 2–3 hours of coverage on Saturday with live online coverage via NBCSports.com throughout the event.

In January 2018 Drake Relays unveiled the Blue Standard, under which Iowa's top high school athletes automatically qualify based on their event performance. The Blue Standard is the top 25 percent of accepted entrant's results from past Drake Relays.[13]

In March 2020, Xtream powered by Mediacom was named the presenting sponsor of the Drake Relays. Xtream's sponsorship allows the Drake Relays to maintain its status as a premier track and field event, to be called the "Drake Relays presented by Xtream powered by Mediacom".[14]

In addition to the track meet, the Relays serves as a second homecoming for the university[15] and sees other community events such as student street painting and a downtown Des Moines block party.

Drake Stadium

Main article: Drake Stadium (Drake University)

Drake Stadium during the Saturday session of the 2014 Drake Relays presented by Hy-Vee
Drake Stadium during the Saturday session of the 2014 Drake Relays presented by Hy-Vee

Opened in 1925, the 14,557-seat stadium and its famous blue oval have hosted the Relays since 1926. A $15 million renovation in 2006 reduced capacity from 18,000 seats in order to expand the lanes, allow fans to watch throwing and running at the same time, and allow for more hosting of events.[8] Another renovation following the 2016 relays saw a new track installed, constructed of the same material used for tracks in Beijing and London for the Summer Olympics.[16]

Relays Directors

Eleven men have claimed the role of director of the Drake Relays since the very first officially organized track and field event took place more than 100 years ago back in the year 1910.

Meet records

Men

Event Record Athlete Nationality Date Ref
100 m 10.01 (+1.9 m/s) Harvey Glance  United States 24 April 1976 [18]
200 m 20.02 (+1.7 m/s) Wallace Spearmon  United States 28 April 2012 [19]
400 m 44.08 Kirani James  Grenada 29 April 2016 [20]
800 m 1:45.86 Randy Wilson  United States 28 April 1978 [21]
1500 m 3:38.27 Steve Scott  United States 28 April 1984 [22]
Mile 3:51.71 Alan Webb  United States 28 April 2007 [23]
5000 m 13:21.39 Morgan McDonald  Australia 23 April 2021 [24]
10000 m 28:07.40 Kipsubai Koskei  Kenya 26 April 1980 [25]
110 m hurdles 13.04 (+1.8 m/s) Omar McLeod  Jamaica 29 April 2017 [26]
400 m hurdles 48.15 Alison dos Santos  Brazil 24 April 2021 [24]
3000 m steeplechase 8:31.02 Henry Marsh  United States 30 April 1977 [27]
High jump 2.40 m (7 ft 10+14 in) Derek Drouin  Canada 25 April 2014 [28]
Pole vault 5.86 m (19 ft 2+12 in) Sam Kendricks  United States 24 April 2021 [24]
Long jump 8.26 m (27 ft 1 in) Anthuan Maybank  United States 24 April 1993
Triple jump 17.12 m (56 ft 2 in) Christian Taylor  United States 27 April 2013
Shot put 22.10 m (72 ft 6 in) Christian Cantwell  United States 29 April 2006 [29]
Discus throw 64.59 m (211 ft 10+34 in) Reggie Jagers  United States 28 April 2018 [30]
Hammer Throw 72.77 m (238 ft 8+34 in) Libor Charfreitag  Slovakia 27 April 2002 [31]
Cory Martin  United States 26 April 2008 [31]
Decathlon 8198 pts Kip Janvrin  United States 25 April 1996 [32]
10.96 (100 m), 7.20 m (long jump), 13.72 m (shot put), 1.98 m (high jump), 48.57 (400 m) /
14.70 (110 m hurdles), 43.16 m (discus), 4.95 m (pole vault), 58.02 m (javelin), 4:11.63 (1500 m)
4 × 100 m relay 38.96 University of Alabama
Emmit King
Lamar Smith
Calvin Smith
Walter Monroe

 United States
 United States
 United States
 United States
30 April 1983 [33]
4 × 200 m relay 1:20.53 University of Texas-El Paso
Obadele Thompson
Milton Mallard
Hayden Stephen
Andrew Tynes

 Barbados
 United States
 United States
 Bahamas
30 April 1994 [34]
4 × 400 m relay 3:00.78 Southern Illinois University
Parry Duncan
Tony Adams
Elvis Forde
Michael Franks

 United States
 United States
 Barbados
 United States
28 April 1984 [22]
Sprint medley relay (2,2,4,8) 3:12.19 Alabama State University
Lamar Smith
Calvin Smith
Terry Menefee
William Wuyke

 United States
 United States
 United States
 Venezuela
30 April 1983
4 × 800 m relay 7:12.57 Iowa State University
Jason Gomez
Joven Nelson
Daniel Nixon
Festus Lagat

 United States
 United States
 United States
 Kenya
23 April 2021 [24]
Distance medley relay 9:30.45 Southern Methodist University
Rob Topping
Russell Mitchell
Ben Bor
Paul Rugut

 United States
 United States

 Kenya
30 April 1983
4×110 m Shuttle hurdles relay 52.94 USA Blue
Jason Richardson
Aleec Harris
Aries Merritt
David Oliver

 United States
 United States
 United States
 United States
25 April 2015 [35]

Women

Event Record Athlete Nationality Date Ref
100 m 11.06 (0.0 m/s) LaShauntea Moore  United States 24 April 2010 [36]
200 m 22.40 (+0.7 m/s) Gwen Torrence  United States 30 April 1994 [37]
400 m 50.13 Francena McCorory  United States 25 April 2015 [35]
800 m 2:00.03 Ajee' Wilson  United States 24 April 2015 [38]
1500 m 4:03.35 Jennifer Simpson  United States 26 April 2013 [39]
Mile 4:40.2 Francie Larrieu-Smith  United States 27 April 1975 [40]
3000 m 8:56.03 Suzy Favor-Hamilton  United States 27 April 2002 [41]
Two miles 9:16.78 Jennifer Simpson  United States 27 April 2018 [42][43]
5000 m 15:23.21 Karissa Schweizer  United States 26 April 2018 [30]
10000 m 32:57.38 Patti Murray  United States 28 April 1988 [44]
100 m hurdles 12.40 (+1.5 m/s) Jasmin Stowers  United States 25 April 2015 [35]
400 m hurdles 54.41 Zuzana Hejnová  Czech Republic 27 April 2013 [45]
3000 m steeplechase 9:32.23 Leah Falland  United States 26 April 2018 [24]
High jump 1.98 m (6 ft 5+34 in) Chaunte Lowe  United States 28 April 2012 [46]
Pole vault 4.88 m (16 ft 0 in) Sandi Morris  United States 28 April 2018 [30]
Long jump 6.78 m (22 ft 2+34 in) Aisha James  United States 26 April 2003 [47]
Triple jump 13.79 m (45 ft 2+34 in) Shani Marks  United States 26 April 2003
Shot put 19.37 m (63 ft 6+12 in) Tia Brooks  United States 29 April 2016 [48]
Discus throw 64.38 m (211 ft 2+12 in) Becky Breisch  United States 24 April 2010 [49]
Hammer throw 72.51 m (237 ft 10+12 in) Brittany Riley  United States 28 April 2007
Heptathlon 6040 pts Diana Pickler  United States 21–22 April 2009 [50]
13.63 (0.0 m/s) (100 m hurdles), 1.78 m (high jump), 12.08 m (shot put), 24.48 (+1.7 m/s) (200 m) /
6.14 m (+1.0 m/s) (long jump), 41.39 m (javelin), 2:16.73 (800 m)
[51]
4 × 100 m relay 43.58 University Of Texas
Morgan Snow
Allison Peter
Christy Udoh
Chalonda Goodman

 United States
 United States Virgin Islands
 Nigeria
 United States
28 April 2012 [52]
4 × 200 m relay 1:31.96 Texas Southern University
Linda Eseimokumoh
Beatrice Utondu
Dyan Webber
Mary Onyali

 Nigeria
 Nigeria
 United States
 Nigeria
28 April 1989 [53]
4 × 400 m relay 3:28.42 Purdue University
Chole Abbot
Brionna Thomas
Symone Black
Jahneya Mitchell

 United States
 United States
 United States
 United States
28 April 2018 [30]
Sprint medley relay (2-2-4-8) 3:43.64 Arkansas State University
Regine Williams
Daina Harper
Taylor Ellis-Watson
Chrishuna Williams

 United States
 United States
 United States
 United States
25 April 2015
4 × 800 m relay 8:27.42 University Of Minnesota
Julie Schwengler
Jamie Cheever
Gabrielle Anderson
Heather Dorniden

 United States
 United States
 United States
 United States
27 April 2007 [54]
Distance medley relay 11:03.25 Notre Dame University
Olivia Markezich
Kelly Hart
Erin Sullivan
Katie Wasserman

 United States
 United States
 United States
 United States
24 April 2021 [24]
4 × 100 m Shuttle hurdles relay 50.50 USA Blue
Brianna Rollins
Dawn Harper-Nelson
Queen Harrison
Kristi Castlin

 United States
 United States
 United States
 United States
24 April 2015 [38]

Mixed

Event Record Athlete Nationality Date Ref
4 × 110 m Shuttle hurdles relay 54.42 Team Blue
Kristi Castlin
Spencer Adams
Nia Ali
Eddie Lovett
 United States
 United States
 United States
 United States Virgin Islands
30 April 2016 [55]

Drake Relays Results

2020s 2010s 2000s 1990s 1980s 1970s 1960s 1950s 1940s 1930s 1920s 1910s
2029 2019 2009 1999 1989 1979 1969 1959 1949 1939 1929 1919
2028 2018 2008 1998 1988 1978 1968 1958 1948 1938 1928 1918
2027 2017 2007 1997 1987 1977 1967 1957 1947 1937 1927 1917
2026 2016 2006 1996 1986 1976 1966 1956 1946 1936 1926 1916
2025 2015 2005 1995 1985 1975 1965 1955 1945 1935 1925 1915
2024 2014 2004 1994 1984 1974 1964 1954 1944 1934 1924 1914
2023 2013 2003 1993 1983 1973 1963 1953 1943 1933 1923 1913
2022 2012 2002 1992 1982 1972 1962 1952 1942 1932 1922 1912
2021 2011 2001 1991 1981 1971 1961 1951 1941 1931 1921 1911
2020 2010 2000 1990 1980 1970 1960 1950 1940 1930 1920 1910

Future dates

Notes

References

  1. ^ Borzi, Pat (24 April 2009). "Drake's Small-Town Atmosphere Draws a Big Track Meet". The New York Times.
  2. ^ "World Athletics Continental Tour | World Athletics". World Athletics. World Athletics. Retrieved March 12, 2020.
  3. ^ "Drake Relays; 75 Years of Excellence". drake.edu.
  4. ^ "Display Article". trackandfieldnews.com.
  5. ^ "Eleven Records Fall On Final Day Of 2012 Drake Relays Before Record-Tying Crowd Of 14,504". godrakebulldogs.com.
  6. ^ "Drake Stadium History". godrakebulldogs.com.
  7. ^ "113 Drake Relays Alumni Competing In Olympics; Collect Five Medals In Two-Day Period". godrakebulldogs.com.
  8. ^ a b "Drake Relays set to take off on refurbished track". Radio Iowa. 3 April 2006.
  9. ^ "Relays go downtown with Grand Blue Mile". The Times-Delphic. Archived from the original on 2015-02-04. Retrieved 2013-04-28.
  10. ^ "Server Error - Drake University".
  11. ^ "Hy-Vee To Become the Presenting Sponsor of the Drake Relays". Newsroom – Drake University. 28 November 2012.
  12. ^ "Lolo Jones Set To Join Elite Drake Relays Field; Hall Of Fame Inductees Announced". godrakebulldogs.com.
  13. ^ "Drake Relays Presented by Hy-Vee Announces High School Blue Standards". Newsroom - Drake University.
  14. ^ "Xtream Powered by Mediacom to Become the Presenting Sponsor of the Drake Relays". DrakeRelays.org. Drake Relays. Retrieved March 12, 2020.
  15. ^ "Drake Relays". Past, Present and Future of Iowa. 5 November 2012.
  16. ^ "Jim Duncan Track Resurfacing One Step Closer To Completion". godrakebulldogs.com. Retrieved 1 May 2017.
  17. ^ "Brian And Natasha Brown Depart Drake For Positions At Missouri". godrakebulldogs.com. Retrieved 1 May 2017.
  18. ^ "1976 results" (PDF). drakerelays.org. 24 April 1976. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 February 2015. Retrieved 27 April 2013.
  19. ^ Jim Dunaway (29 April 2012). "Spearmon, Lowe and Wilson break meet records at Drake Relays". IAAF. Retrieved 30 April 2012.
  20. ^ Cathal Dennehy (30 April 2016). "Kirani James flies to world-leading 44.08 at Drake Relays". IAAF. Retrieved 1 May 2016.
  21. ^ "1978 results" (PDF). drakerelays.org. 29 April 1978. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 February 2015. Retrieved 27 April 2013.
  22. ^ a b "1984 results" (PDF). drakerelays.org. 28 April 1984. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 February 2015. Retrieved 27 April 2013.
  23. ^ AP (28 April 2007). "Webb shatters Scott's Drake Relays mile mark". USA Today. Retrieved 27 April 2013.
  24. ^ a b c d e f "2021 Drake Relays Results". godrakebulldogs.com. 24 April 2021. Retrieved 20 May 2021.
  25. ^ "1980 results" (PDF). drakerelays.org. 26 April 1980. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 February 2015. Retrieved 27 April 2013.
  26. ^ "110m Hurdles Results". sidearmstats.com. 29 April 2017. Retrieved 30 April 2017.
  27. ^ "1977 results" (PDF). drakerelays.org. 30 April 1977. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 February 2015. Retrieved 27 April 2013.
  28. ^ "2014 notes" (PDF). drakerelays.org. 26 April 2014. Archived from the original (PDF) on 27 April 2014. Retrieved 26 April 2014.
  29. ^ AP (29 April 2006). "Wariner, Cantwell post strong performances at Drake Relays". ESPN. Retrieved 27 April 2013.
  30. ^ a b c d "2018 notes". drakerelays.org. 28 April 2018. Retrieved 30 April 2018.
  31. ^ a b Auburn Tigers (26 April 2008). "Cory Martin's Record-Tying Performance Highlights Saturday Competition For Track And Field Teams". Auburn Tigers. Retrieved 27 April 2013.
  32. ^ "1996 results" (PDF). drakerelays.org. 27 April 1996. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 February 2015. Retrieved 27 April 2013.
  33. ^ "1983 results" (PDF). drakerelays.org. 30 April 1983. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 February 2015. Retrieved 27 April 2013.
  34. ^ "1994 results men" (PDF). drakerelays.org. 30 April 1994. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 February 2015. Retrieved 27 April 2013.
  35. ^ a b c "Notes". drakerelays.org. 25 April 2015. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  36. ^ Dunaway, James (2010-04-25). "Cantwell opens with 21.69m effort in Des Moines – Drake Relays report". IAAF. Retrieved 2010-04-25.
  37. ^ "1994 results women" (PDF). drakerelays.org. 30 April 1994. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 February 2015. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  38. ^ a b "Notes". drakerelays.org. 24 April 2015. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  39. ^ "1500 Metres Results". nmnathletics.com. 26 April 2013. Retrieved 27 April 2013.
  40. ^ http://www.godrakebulldogs.com//pdf8/940885.pdf?SPSID=319753&SPID=8142&DB_OEM_ID=15700[permanent dead link]
  41. ^ "2002 results" (PDF). drakerelays.org. 27 April 2002. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  42. ^ "Jenny Simpson, in another return to Drake Relays, takes aim at American 2-mile record". Des Moines Register. 27 April 2018. Retrieved 3 May 2018.
  43. ^ "Jenny Simpson breaks U.S. 2-mile record at Drake Relays". ESPN.com. 27 April 2018. Retrieved 3 May 2018.
  44. ^ "1988 results" (PDF). drakerelays.org. 30 April 1988. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 February 2015. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  45. ^ "400 Metres Hurdles Results". nmnathletics.com. 27 April 2013. Retrieved 30 April 2013.
  46. ^ Luke Meredith (28 April 2012). "Wallace Spearmon, Jr. breaks Johnson's Drake mark report". greenwichtime.com. Retrieved 28 April 2012.
  47. ^ "2003 Results" (PDF). drakerelays.org. 26 April 2003. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 February 2015. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  48. ^ "Shot Put Results". deltatiming.com. 29 April 2016. Retrieved 30 April 2017.
  49. ^ "Second Place This Time For Jones In Drake Relay Hurdles". WOWT. 2010-04-24. Retrieved 2013-04-29.
  50. ^ "Three Records Set On Opening Day Of Drake Relays". godrakebulldogs.com. 2010-04-21. Retrieved 2010-05-01.
  51. ^ "Heptathlon Results". godrakebulldogs.com. 2010-04-21. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2015-05-29. Retrieved 2010-05-01.
  52. ^ "Eleven Records Fall On Final Day Of 2012 Drake Relays Before Record-Tying Crowd Of 14,504". godrakebulldogs.com. 2012-04-28. Retrieved 2012-04-28.
  53. ^ "1989 results" (PDF). drakerelays.org. 29 April 1989. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 February 2015. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  54. ^ "2007 results" (PDF). drakerelays.org. 28 April 2007. Archived from the original (PDF) on 8 June 2012. Retrieved 29 April 2013.
  55. ^ "2016 Drake Relays Results" (PDF). godrakebulldogs.com. 30 April 2016. Retrieved 21 May 2021.
  56. ^ "Future Dates for Drake Relays". Drake University Athletics. Retrieved 2021-07-19.