Friday, July 27, 2012

Washington State's track facility to get a makeover this summer...

PULLMAN--The Mooberry Track & Field Complex (left/photo courtesy Washington State University) on the campus of Washington State University is getting a makeover this summer, as the school is resurfacing the track and redoing the field event areas.

The track itself is receiving a completely new running surface, the Beynon Sports Surface. According to its website, Beynon manufactures high-performance synthetic surfaces designed for speed and competition as well as daily training.

The Beynon premier track and field surfaces are found in the world's most renowned athletic facilities, carrying some of the world's greatest champions to record-breaking times. The BSS 2000 is promoted as giving an Olympic caliber running surface that gives athletes the ultimate edge when it comes to competitive performance. It has not only been able to stand up to adverse weather conditions, as was evident during the 2012 US Olympic Trials in Eugene, Ore., but it has also provided the resilient response and maximum energy return that the athletes need to shatter records.

The BSS 2000 is also the surface of choice for the University of Washington's new track and field facility being built next to Husky Soccer Stadium near the east student parking lot.

Immediately noticeable of the inner perimeter improvements is at the north end of the infield "D." In addition to the drainage system, the discus circle will be moved and the sector will be in the center of the infield. The entire "D" section, from the finish line of the 100 meters on the east side of the oval to the start of the 1500 meters on the west side, will be covered by the Beynon surface.

"These are significant improvements to the facility," Cougar Track & Field Head Coach Rick Sloan, with the program for 39 years and head coach for the past 17 years, said. "We will have bi-directional long jump pits that will be off set on each other so we can long jump in either direction. And the pole vault will be set up to have boxes at either end of the runway so we can compete in either direction. The prevailing winds are usually out of the west-southwest so we will be covered on that end. There will be a smaller rectangular area of infield grass that can be watered without wearing down the pits and runways."

Looking to the future Coach Sloan envisions filling in the "D" at the south end of the field creating a much larger high jump area and the ability to compete in different directions. The javelin will remain in that end and the shot put circle will be inside the "D" surface. Also the west side long/triple jump and east side pole vault will move further into the infield. The long jump will have a pit at each end with a double runway. The pole vault will have a pit in the middle with runways painted in the north and south direction.

"When we host the Pac-12 Track & Field Championships in two years having that south end "D" work completed would enable us to have two high jumps going on simultaneously and with the numbers we have been seeing in the combined events that is a necessity. The advantages of what we're doing plus the longevity of our facility without daily water from the sprinkler system, it will look sharp out there."

Courtesy of WSU Athletics, here is a video describing the work, featuring Sloan and decathlete Sean Harris.

NOTE: The sports information office at Washington State University contributed to this report.

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