Team Pursuit is the final Spring Series event. It signifies the Little 500 being just one week away.
On Saturday night, Delta Gamma and Gray Goat made sure to head into the final week before the race with momentum.
Delta Gamma defeated Ski in the women's race while Gray Goat beat Black Key Bulls in the men's to win their respective Team Pursuit championship heats.
“It felt great, it was awesome to have my team there,” Delta Gamma senior Audrey Morlan said. “Team Pursuit is the hardest thing, but you’re suffering with your best friends.”
In the preliminary heats, Delta Gamma only held a 0.66 seconds advantage over Ski. Alpha Chi Omega, the third-place team, was over seven seconds behind Ski for second place.
In the championship heat, Delta Gamma posted a time under eight minutes to beat Ski by roughly 10 seconds. The 7:59.92 time from Delta Gamma was the first Team Pursuit run under eight minutes since Teter clocked in at 7:50.11 in 2011.
“It feels good, but it’s not going to change how we feel going into race day,” Delta Gamma senior Laurie Bignal said. “If we were to have won or lost, we want to show up to race day with the same mentality and come out strong. It’s some nice confidence, but it doesn’t mean much to us come race day.”
Gray Goat had a similar performance to Delta Gamma on the men’s side.
In the preliminary heats, Gray Goat only held a 1.83 seconds advantage over Black Key Bulls. Then in the championship heat, Gray Goat stepped up. Black Key Bulls improved its time by 2.37 seconds, but it wasn’t enough.
Gray Goat clocked in at 8:59.83 to claim the men’s Team Pursuit championship heat. It is the first year since 2015 that a men’s team had a time under nine minutes to win Team Pursuit.
“It was tough,” Gray Goat senior Jacob Hansen said. “I’m in a lot of pain, but I’m just so proud of my teammates. They worked so hard. We were pretty confident in the first run and just knew we had to do it again.”
With the Spring Series coming to an end, the Little 500 race is just a week away. Team Pursuit might not be an big indicator of how teams perform in the actual race, but it doesn’t hurt to head into the week with the extra boost of confidence.
“This race is a great show of fitness, and we came out and poured everything out onto the track and had a great result,” Gray Goat senior Billy Chien said. “I think we’re going into next weekend with a lot of confidence and hopefully we can replicate the same result in the actual race.”