Thursday, March 31, 2016

Two Sprinting Posts In One Week!

" I'm shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here" 
-Captain Louis Renault

My post about the recent sub-40 second 4 X 100M Relay by PSU, brought a sprinting story out from an unexpected source.  Ex-PSU (and ASU) Shot Putter Gary Williky has a unique notch on his belt.  He actually took out a top-US runner in a foot race!  And won a $100 bet in the process.   I'll let him tell the whole story...

Back in 1983, I was lucky enough that Steve Scott had invited me to a track and field tour. It was called The Pan Am Series. His friend John Walker had recruited him and there were some great athletes. I was fortunate to travel with Ray Flynn, John Walker, David Moorcroft, Chandra Cheeseborough, Tom Petranoff and James Robinson. It was unbelievable to so have many great throwers, runners and jumpers. We had the greatest time and I was so lucky to have set, at the time, the Australian soil record in the Shot Put of just over 66 feet.

But that spring I was in pretty damn good shape and when we got back from the trip somewhere in March Steve Scott had challenged me to a running race and I accepted. But what Steve didn't know is I had been training with 40 yard and 60 yards sprints.  My friends and I took this pretty seriously because he was kind of teasing and calling me out.  And at Arizona State, there was nobody was going to call me out!

I was a grad assistant /coach and had a big mouth so I trained hard for it.  Ray Wicksel and Steve Tully as race judges who was there and Arizona State coach Len Miller was there. Actually there was a lot of people there! We came out of the blocks with a gunshot and I blew him away so hard that when I finished I stopped at the Finish Line turned around and watched them finish. He turned over the hundred bucks and took me out to dinner a couple days later and we recently had a chance to talk about it at Coach Miller’s retirement party at UC Irvine. (You can reach out to him he'll tell you the same story though I get to blow it up a bit I think.)  I think I blew him away then stopped about 10 to 15 yards back but I did turn around I was laughing and giggling and pointing them out and we hugged.

… and that's the Steve Scott story.  He kept his mouth shut after that one. I tease him each time I can.

Gary Williky
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