Stratton inches closer to sub-9 3200

By Randy Lefko Sports Editor
Posted 3/30/22

ST. AUGUSTINE - St. Johns Country Day School track coach Greg Stratton was looking at the logistics of whether to go to the FSU Relays at Florida State University and put his top guys up against some …

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Stratton inches closer to sub-9 3200

Posted

ST. AUGUSTINE - St. Johns Country Day School track coach Greg Stratton was looking at the logistics of whether to go to the FSU Relays at Florida State University and put his top guys up against some of the state’s fastest runners in anticipation of plenty of speed at the upcoming Pepsi Relays at the University of Florida, but decided on staying close to home.

“We chose to stay closer to home and try to get ready for a big race in Gainesville because Matthew will be running there next year,” said Stratton, referring to son Matthew, a senior track runner for him at St. Johns by the way. “So we stayed here and took some athletes to the Pedro Menendez Falcon Friday track meet.”

What dad Stratton did not realize and maybe son Stratton maybe did not decide until track day was that Matthew Stratton was planning an all-out solo assault on his best race time for the 3200 meters; the two mile equivalent in metric track.

“He just came up to me at the meet, said I’m feeling good and I think I’m going to go for a personal best,” said dad Stratton. “I said okay, I got your splits. Let’s do this.”

“Doing this” meant lapping the field for the eight lap race, running a 4:28-ish first mile of the two and finishing in 9:06.84 to establish a new school record, a new

personal best and a shockwave to those that may be in Gainesville this week.

“I had Graham (teammate Graham Myers) run with him for the first two laps, but to not go the entire distance with him because he was running the 1600, then let Matthew go,” said dad Stratton, noting Myers won the 1600 in 4:33. “He flew by, kept the splits, but slowed on laps six and seven from 67 seconds to two laps at 71 and 72.”

In the final lap, with son Stratton’s recent 9:13 best on the line, Stratton tapped the gas pedal just enough to get into the near-nine stratosphere.

“To do that all alone, with the field being lapped, was impressive,” said dad Stratton. “If he had someone on his shoulder pushing him, we go sub-9. Maybe it will happen Thursday in Gainesville.”

Also at Pedro Menendez, “The Other Guy” teammate Stanley Cowherd revved up his legs for wins in the 200 (23.12), the 400 (51.74) and the long jump (22’-10.75”).

St. Johns also got a win in the discus with Andrew Britts tossing for 112’-8.25”.

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