San Quentin Track Meet - 2009

On the afternoon of February 20, 2009 San Quentin State Prison's lower yard was again a buzz with inmates cheering for inmates as the Second San Quentin Track Meet was contested between some very fast and talented young, and not so young, men. The first track meet held in August of 2006 was the brain child of inmate Ralph Ligons, a former world class 200M runner back in the early 1970’s. Ralph thought that there was an abundance of athletic talent among the inmates of San Quentin and wanted to give the inmates the opportunity to show their stuff! This year Ronnie Goodman, who participated in 4 of the races held was the driving force behind this year’s track meet.
For the past 3-1/2 years San Quentin has had a running club, the San Quentin 1,000-Mile Club, meeting twice monthly to train the inmates and give them the opportunity to enjoy the competition and comradeship of running longer distances together. The San Quentin 1,000-Mile Club was formed under the direction of Laura Bowman, with the purpose of helping to rehabilitate the inmates through recreation. The February Track meet was finally held after several previous postponements due to bad weather. The track meet was supported by Laura Bowman, Jill Friedman, Frank Ruona, Steve Pascascio and several other inmates who were happy to lend a hand. 
The first event of the day was a new event, the 5 Kilometer Run (3.1 Miles). Ronnie Goodman took the lead early and stayed in the lead all of the 12-1/2 laps of the race. Ronnie established an excellent new record time of 19:19. Stephen Liebb showed much fortitude in trying to hang with Ronnie and finished second with a time of 21:39. Andrew Mearis finished 3rd in a strong 23:43. Ronnie Richardson kind of ran out of gas a couple of miles into the run, but hung on and finished the race in 4th place.
Another new event, the 200 Meter Dash, was the next race that was run. This race was slightly downhill and the leaders took advantage of the downhill portion of the course and screeched to a very fast 22:01 time for winner Joseph Jones and 22:46 for second place finisher Abraham Glasper. Geronimo Washington ran a strong 26:43 for 3rd place even though he was running in his work boots!
Next was the same 200 Meter Dash, but this time for runners who were over 50 years of age. This event was won by Jerome Black in a time of 27:52. Malcolm Jones finished second in 36:13.
The one mile run was next. Omar Camacho took off  like a rabbit being chased by greyhounds on the first lap. Ronnie Goodman having already run the 5 Kilometer Race took off at a more moderate pace.  By the second lap, Ronnie had closed the gap and he took the lead on the 3rd lap. Ronnie hung on for the victory in 5:55, with Omar Camacho 100 yards back in 6:19.   Bill Pillars and Geronimo Washington battled it out on the last lap, with Bill catching and passing Geronimo in the last straight away to take 3rd place with a time of 7:00. 
The next event was the quarter mile. Floyd Lockett took off  like he was going to leave everyone else in the dust. He held the lead for about 300 Meters and then he hit the wall and really started to fade. Ronnie Goodman, running his 3rd race of the day finished very strong and tied the meet record set by Pete Herndon in 2006 with a swift time of 1:01.   Floyd Lockett hung on for 2nd place with a time of 1:07. Arthur Franklin finished third with a time of 1:21 and Geronimo Washington ran 1:35 for 4th place.
Next it was time for the sprinters again. An open 100 Meter dash was held first and Alhondro Myers won the race with a time of 11:98.  Joseph Jones the winner of the 200 Meters was 2nd with a time of 13:42, while Geronimo Washington finished 3rd in 14:01. The old timers got their opportunity next, as the 100 Meter dash for men 50 years old and older was held. Jerome Black repeated his 200 Meter victory with a time of 13:62 and broke Alan Eaton’s record of 13.76 set in 2006.  Malcolm Jones finished second in 27:46.
The final event of the meet was the 4 by ¼ mile relay. Two teams were entered and this was a race to the finish! The team of Jerome Black, Malcolm Jones, Anthony Starks and Geronimo Washington just held off the team of Andrew Mearis, Floyd Lockett, Ronnie Goodman and Bill Pillars in a time of 4:46 to 4:48
A good time was had by all and we lucked out and had beautiful weather for the meet.
The following individuals are now listed as the San Quentin Record Holders:

1.5 Kilometer RunRonnie Goodman19:192009
2.200 Meter DashJoseph Jones0:22:012009
3.Over 50 200 Meter DashJerome Black0:27.522009
4.One Mile RunMike Villanueva5:242006
5.¼ Mile RunPete Herndon1:012006
  Ronnie Goodman1:012009
6.100 Yard DashD’Angelo Boone0:11.172006
7.Over 50yo 100 Yard Dash Jerome Black0:13.622009
8.4 x ¼ Mile Relay 4:302006
  Steve Pascascio 
  Bobby Evans 
  Ron Goodman 
  Pete Herndon 
The inmates have another year to work on their speed to see if in 2010 they can break one of the records at the Third San Quentin Track Meet.

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