Warner leads ISU sprinters in 100-meter, 4×100 relay at Drake Relays

Dylan Montz

DES MOINES — Despite the cool and windy day that isn’t ideal for sprinting, senior Ian Warner was able to make the best of it by claiming third place in the 100-meter dash at the Drake Relays on Saturday.

Sprints coach Nate Wiens said Warner — who ran a personal-best in the 100-meter dash with a time of 10.33 — had an “excellent” performance on Saturday in the 100-meter dash and he is progressing nicely and will peak at the right time in the season.

“The way he’s been training, every race we’re just getting a little bit faster,” Wiens said. “That lets us know that we’re on the right road. He’s staying consistent with expectations through the year.”

Warner said he sees his performance on Saturday as a step in the right direction.

“The goal is to get to nationals this season,” Warner said. “So I’m just trying to get better every week.”

Warner also said his personal-best performance will be important for him heading into the end of the season when he will travel to the Big 12 Outdoor Championships and beyond.

“You’ve got to build your confidence up going into [the end of the season],” Warner said. “If you’re running worse going into it, your confidence is going to be low so that race was a really good confidence booster.”

Warner was also the anchor leg for the ISU 4×100-meter relay after qualifying for Saturday’s finals on Friday with a time of 40.64. In the Saturday finals, the squad finished in fifth place with an improved time of 40.24.

The Drake Relays is the first competition where Warner, junior Patrick Lewis and true freshmen Nick Efkamp and Teddy Lampkin have competed together in the relay. Despite the finish, Warner said he is optimistic about what this group can do in that race in the future.

“We’ve just got to work on everyone’s top-speed work,” Warner said. “Just get faster on each leg. If we get faster on each leg, we’ll be faster as a team and we’ll work on the exchanges. We only practiced [the exchanges] for one week coming into [the Drake Relays]. I’m proud of the boys for how far we got with it.”

Wiens said he was proud to see how well his group competed with how fresh this relay is for the four competing.

“We’ve taken the emphasis off of relays this year and put it more on individuals and it’s really paid off big,” Wiens said. “We’re putting four guys together that maybe don’t have the cleanest [exchanges] and we’re still running faster than we have in four years.”

Wiens said this was a good starting point for the 4×100 squad and that the group will run a lot faster in the coming weeks as the team will travel to the Big 12 Outdoor Championships on May 11-13 in Manhattan, Kan.