Tech Set For Home Finale|
Texas Tech is set to host its final home outdoor meet of the season Saturday at the Fuller Track and Field Complex.
May 4, 2012
LUBBOCK, Texas - The Texas Tech track and field team is set to compete in its final home outdoor meet of the 2012 season on Saturday as the No. 9 Lady Raiders and No. 10 Red Raiders host the Red Raider Open at the Fuller Track and Field Complex. The meet will serve as their final opportunity to prepare for the Big 12 Championships next weekend in Manhattan, Kan.
The Red Raider Open is scheduled to begin with the field events at 10 a.m. with competition held at the throws complex, while running events are set to start at 6 p.m at the Fuller Track and Field Complex.
"It's just so much fun to be able to run at home," head coach Wes Kittley said. "We had only one opportunity before this to run at home. Our track is fast, it's one of the best in the world and we love running on it. We are familiar with it and we are excited to compete at home in front of our fans."
Texas Tech hosted its only previous home outdoor meet on April 14.
Saturday, Texas Tech will host some of the top teams from across the region while also welcoming members of the Belgium national team which is in the midst of training for the 2012 Summer Olympics.
The Belgium national team has entered 12 athletes into the meet, most notably in the 400 meter dash and the 4x400 relays. Six Belgian athletes, including 2011 European Champion Kevin Borlee, are scattered throughout four sections of the men's 400 meter dash. Belgium will also run two men's 4x400 relay teams giving Tech a chance to line up with some of the top talent in the world.
Saturday's Red Raider Open will mark the final home outdoor meet for 21 seniors on the Texas Tech roster. The 2012 senior class has made its mark under head coach Wes Kittley as nine athletes garnered All-American honors during their careers in Lubbock.
BBC and VTM to document Red Raider Open to Worldwide Audience
As part of a two-year long documentary project entitled `World Olympic Dreams' the British Broadcasting Corporation will film a segment for the documentary and television series in Lubbock on Saturday at the Red Raider Open meet hosted by Texas Tech.
The BBC, a 24-hour world news station, is following a group of 25 athletes as they aspire to qualify for the 2012 Summer Olympic Games in London. A group of 12 athletes from the Belgium national team will compete this weekend at the Red Raider Open. The segment is scheduled to air in June.
"I'm just very excited for the opportunity it brings," head coach Wes Kittley said. "It's an opportunity to showcase our facility in front of the whole world through the BBC. It's also a great opportunity for our athletes to run against the athletes they have. It just adds to our meet and gives us a lot of credibility."
The Fuller Track and Field Complex was renovated in 2009 and includes a Super X Mondo surface - the same used during the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Highlighting the BBC coverage are twin brothers Kevin and Jonathon Borlee - members of the Belgium 4x400 relay team and some of the top 400 meter sprinters in the world.Kevin earned a bronze medal for Belgium in the 400 meter dash at the 2011 IAAF World Championships, and a gold medal at the 2010 European Championships in Barcelona.
VTM ( Vlaamse Televisie Maatschappij) will also be present to cover the meet. The station is documenting the experiences and training benefits athletes receive by competing in the United States.
Gil Roberts looking for crucial 400 meter time
Five-time All-American Gil Roberts will look to record his first 400 meter mark Saturday. The senior competed earlier in the year in the 100 and 200 meter dash, however has been rested throughout the majority of the outdoor season for precautionary reasons.
The 2012 U.S. 400 meter indoor champion and member of the U.S. 4x400 relay team that captured gold at the IAAF World Championships in Istanbul in March has a personal best time of 44.86 in the event and captured the 2009 Big 12 400 meter Championship.
Tech leading the pack in pole vault
Texas Tech is currently home to the top two pole vaulters in the Big 12. Both sophomore Kyal Meyers and junior Shade Weygandt hold firm leads in the event heading this weekend. Meyers captured a personal best mark of 5.41 meters (17'-9.00") at the Texas Tech Open on April 14. The mark ranks No. 11 nationally and tops in the Big 12.
Meanwhile, Weygandt cleared the bar at 4.35 meters (14'-3.25") at the Texas Relays. She quickly leapt into the top five on the national outdoor list and enters the weekend at No. 4 in the country while holding a convincing lead in the Big 12.