How a South Jersey record got faster AFTER the race ended! And the all-time girls sprint medley top-50!!!!!

A strange story about the South Jersey sprint medley record.

No South Jersey school had broken four minutes for a sprint medley, but Willingboro was loaded in 2003 and at the inaugural Eastern Regional Relay Classic on its home track, the Chimeras took a shot at the South Jersey record of 4:00.71, which they had set a year earlier at adidas Outdoor Nationals.

There was no question pretty early that Boro would win. But would they go under 4?

The team of Chanel Hamilton, Rasheda Spratley, Rhea Mann and Okechi Ogbuokiri wound up running 3:59.6.

I know that’s what they ran because I was standing at the finish line with a stopwatch. My watch and all the officials’ watches agreed. So did Boro coach Tosca Bynoe, who was standing next to me and whose watch had a similar time.

The time was No. 4 in state history, behind only Columbia’s then-national record 3:55.8 (converted from 3:57.0 full mile) at the 1980 New York Relays at Downing Stadium on Randall’s Island and 3:58.56 at the 1995 East Coast Relays at Morristown and Shabazz’s 3:58.59 at the 1986 Jersey Relays at Plainfield. 

There’s only one problem.

The clerk who was recording times on a card and bringing them to the timing tent scribbled 3:59.6 in such a way that the “6” looked like a “0.”

I explained to the timing people that Boro’s time was actually 3:59.6 and not 3:59.0. They went to the timer at the finish line and asked her what she had on her watch, but by then she had cleared it and said she didn’t remember.

This is a South Jersey record we’re talking about here. And the time was No. 15 in U.S. history!

And she didn’t remember.

The timing people had no choice but to go with what they saw on the card, which really did look like 3:59.0.

Courier_Post_Tue__May_20__2003_-2

To this day that mark is listed in all the record books as 3:59.0, but we know better! So the correct time is listed here!

And 17 years later, it remains a South Jersey record, and it’s still No. 13 in state history.

It’s fast! Just not quite as fast as everyone thinks!

All-Time S.J. Girls Outdoor Sprint Medley Top-50

3:59.6h … Willingboro, 2003
4:00.34 … Willingboro, 2006
4:00.71 … Willingboro, 2002
4:01.07 … Lenape, 2015
4:02.60 … Sterling, 2017
4:02.69 … Willingboro, 2004
4:02.89 … Woodrow Wilson, 2002
4:03.04 … Camden, 1995
4:03.42 … Millville, 2008
4:03.54 … Lenape, 2006
4:04.44 … Millville, 2013
4:04.86 … Woodrow Wilson, 2009
4:05.2h … Winslow Twp., 2003
4:05.36 … Willingboro, 2010
4:05.38 … Millville, 2019
4:05.70 … Ocean City, 2004
4:06.06 … Ocean City, 2005
4:06.36 … Millville, 2011
4:06.56 … Rancocas Valley, 2007
4:07.16 … Egg Harbor Twp., 2015
4:08.08 … Kingsway, 2017
4:08.16 … Lenape, 2017
4:08.23 … Timber Creek, 2011
4:08.27 … Washington Twp., 2007
4:08.64 … Woodrow  Wilson, 2003
4:08.76 … Willingboro, 1998
4:08.81 … Cherokee, 2011
4:09.23 … Pennsauken, 2014
4:09.42 … Ocean City, 2014
4:09.47 … Rancocas Valley, 2018
4:10.12 … Lenape, 2007
4:10.0h … Williamstown, 1979
4:10.0h … Camden, 2003
4:10.30 … Holy Spirit, 2011
4:10.39 … Holy Spirit, 2012
4:10.44 … Highland, 1998
4:10.5h … Woodrow Wilson, 2005
4:10.69 … Cherokee, 2016
4:10.74 … Highland, 2003
4:10.74 … Pennauken, 2015
4:10.8h … Haddon Heights, 1980
4:10.9h … Willingboro, 2005
4:11.15 … Buena, 1998
4:11.31 … Seneca, 2008
4:11.2h … Haddonfield, 2009
4:11.5h … Camden, 1994
4:11.5h … Buena, 2000
4:11.73 … Shawnee, 2017
4:11.76 … Washington Twp., 1999
4:11.91 … Timber Creek, 2010
4:11.8h … Overbrook, 2000

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