The first collegiate state track and field championships will be held Tuesday night at East High School's new track stadium, featuring men's and women's teams from Utah's five universities.
The meet, believed to be the first collegiate competition held in Salt Lake City in some 15 years (since the track in Rice Stadium was removed), will begin at 7 p.m. and finish at about 9:15. To speed up the meet, it will be a finals-only competition, with no heats or preliminary competition."Whether you're a track fan or not, this should be a fun meet," says former Olympic distance runner Doug Padilla, who organized the meet. "Almost everyone has a team they like to cheer for in the state. This meet will determine the top athletes and the top team in the state. There will be some great competitions."
Admission is $6 for adults, $4 for students. Kids 12 and under are free.
Two of the top athletes to watch will be Courtney Pugmire, BYU's rising young (sophomore) distance runner who won a spot on the U.S. world junior cross country team earlier this year. Also, BYU's Amy Christensen, who has qualified for the Olympic Trials, is one of the top shot putters in the nation.
Southern Utah's Ted Hansen has run 8:49 for the steeplechase this season. He will be challenged by Weber State's strong crew of steeplechasers.
The 800-meter run figures to be one of the evening's most competitive races, featuring Weber's Lee Lorenz, Utah State's Matt Lamb and Matt Stowell and BYU's Dirk Greenhalgh.