West Valley’s annual Ram Relays are usually a big enough deal, but Saturday’s edition of the track and field invitational at Clasen Field will be truly special.
In addition to the 16 teams gathering for the 21st running of the Relays at the school’s refurbished facility, West Valley is celebrating its long and successful program by honoring past state champions, school-record holders and former elite athletes from the last six decades.
These former athletes will be honored at 10:30 a.m., a half hour before field events begin at 11. Running events get underway at noon.
One thing immediately noticeable about West Valley’s new track complex is that the 100-meter dash and short hurdles will be contested on the south side of the track from west to east. No more headwinds! (at least for those events).
After the meet a reception will be held for Ram Relays founder Ron Bergevin, a longtime track and cross country coach in the district.
On hand for Saturday’s festivities will be Heidi McClimans, who has held the school record in the girls high jump for 36 years. McClimans cleared 5-9 in 1977.
The oldest record on the books for the boys is Doug Adams in the 400 (1974), although Stan Emerick threw the old-style javelin 208-7 in 1962.
Local teams in the field Saturday include West Valley, Sunnyside, Selah, East Valley and Naches Valley.