Rabbit record setters to be honored Saturday
By Gordon Pynes
Special to the Journal
Rabbit record setters will be honored at the Atlanta Lions Club/Gordon Pynes/Runnin’ Rabbs Relays prior to the final events at Atlanta Rabbit Stadium this upcoming Saturday afternoon, March 18.
Fourteen former Rabbs who set and still hold records for the meet will be recognized. Six boys’ division records and four girls’ marks are still in the hands of these Rabbits.
For the girls, Sarah Haydel Carter holds both the 1600 and 3200-meter run records set in 1998. She then went on to defend state titles in both events, earning a total of four gold medals at state in Austin.
Tiffany Lockett Falls owns the 400-meter standard set in 2005 and she also went on to earn gold at the state meet. Laura Garrison Ahrens has the 800-meter mark, which he posted in 2007.
Courtney Richardson maintains the oldest meet record set in the first relays in 1996. He blazed to a 13.85 record in the 110 high hurdles.
Reggie Hill posted the 100-meter dash mark in 1997 and also joined mates Derrick Blaylock, Trae Lawson and Scooter McKinney that same year to put up the 400-meter relay record-setting time.
That same quartet then took the gold medal at state later that spring.
Local physician Bo Price ran away with the 3200-meter race in 2002 and his time still stands. He too was a state champ in the event that year.
Atlanta track coach Nick Miller ran with teammates Dallas Washington, Curtis Burns and Calvin Graham on the 1600-meter relay to a time that has held up since 2004. The record by a Rabbit was in 2013 when Chris Ibarra set a fast pace in the 800-meters. Now a junior at the University of Houston, Chris competes for the Cougars track team.
In a meet that has consistently drawn strong competition from numerous East Texas schools and from as far away as Jasper, Orange and Sweetwater, it is amazing that these 14 Atlanta runners still have their names in the meet record books.
Another astounding fact is that these competitors went on in their careers to produce 21 gold medals at the UIL Texas High School State Track Meet.
Please come out Saturday and join fans in honoring some of Atlanta High School’s finest former athletes. They have helped establish a strong track and field tradition for Atlanta’s Runnin’ Rabbs.