The 90th Kansas Relays run from Wednesday to Saturday at Rock Chalk Park, with most of the festivities taking place Friday and Saturday. Here are five things to watch at the event.
1. He’s No. 1
Kansas freshman thrower Gleb Dudarev enters this weekend as the top-ranked hammer thrower in the nation. The Belarus native, who is scheduled to compete at 5 p.m. Friday at Rock Chalk Park, set the school record with a toss of 238 feet, 6 inches two weeks ago and also has posted the top five throws in school history.
2. Downtown shot put
For a sixth straight year, the Downtown Shot Put will take place on Eighth Street between Massachusetts and New Hampshire Streets. The event — slated for 6 p.m. Friday — is headlined by Oregon native Ryan Crouser, who was the gold medalist in the 2016 Rio Olympics. In all, five of the top 25 shot putters in the world are scheduled to attend.
3. Street pole vault
The first of the major events takes place at 5:30 Thursday in the parking lot of Salty Iguana at Sixth and Wakarusa Streets. Ten professional pole vaulters will be there, with five male-and-female duos taking part in a team-style event on separate runways. Cash prizes will be awarded for clearances at the exhibition.
4. 800 stars
KU will have a pair of runners to watch in the 800-meter run. Strymar Livingston, who will compete at 7:47 p.m., is looking for his third straight Kansas Relays victory, while Whitney Adams (7:43 p.m.) has the school record and also five of the Jayhawks’ fastest nine times in the event.
5. A high bar
Two Jayhawks will be looking to improve top-five national marks in the pole vault at 6:30 p.m. Saturday at Rock Chalk Park. Jake Albright cleared a career-best 18 feet, 4 inches, in his outdoor opener, while Hussain Al Hizam will be looking to break his own Saudi Arabian national record, which also is set at 18-4.