A final debut: Dom Remeikis places 11th in 800-meter run at first state meet
The Summit High School track and field team sent three athletes to the 4A Colorado State Track and Field Championships in Lakewood, and all three gave it their all this weekend in their respective events after the meet was postponed due to a winter storm on Friday.
Following a third place finish by freshman Ella Hagen in the 3200-meter run on Saturday, May 22, junior Dom Remeikis took the track in the 800-meter run.
A week prior at the St. Vrain Hoka Invitational in Longmont, Remeikis believed he had ran his last race of the season, when he won his heat of the boy’s 1600-meter run. He ran a season-best time of 4 minutes, 27.7 seconds. Remeikis was thrilled with his run that day after feeling like he struggled in the event for the majority of the season. With some momentum behind him, Remeikis raced the next day at the Last Chance at Jeffco Stadium track meet.
At the Last Chance meet, Remeikis accomplished what seemed impossible. Remeikis qualified for the state meet, running a personal-best time in the boy’s 800-meter run and nabbing the eighth qualifying spot in the state event.
“I was one race away from not coming to the state meet at all, so just the fact that I was able to get here at all is really special,” Remeikis said.
Heading into his first state meet, Remeikis was brimming with confidence after having two standout performances during that one-day span last week.
Remeikis took to the line with piles of snow still lining the infield of the track during his first state championship meet as the weather started to grow crisp in the early evening hours.
The race started with a flurry of arms and legs as a stacked 800-meter field jockeyed for position along the first curve of the race. Putting himself in a good position early, Remeikis latched on to the quick pace but did not allow himself to go out too fast. Through the first 400-meters of the quick, two-lap race Remeikis clocked a time of 57.580 seconds, firmly on pace for a new personal best.
”I wanted to stay relaxed through lap one and then work the last lap,“ Remeikis said. ”Nothing to lose. This is my last race.“
On the final lap, the entire field started to tire and the race came down to whoever could force their tired legs to the finish first.
Remeikis, with a look of determination on his face, came off the final curve and pumped his arms all the way through the finish line, executing his plan and finishing with nothing else to give.
Remeikis finished the last lap in a time of 1:00.066 for a total time of 1:57.65, just barely off his season best from last week.
In his first state race, Remeikis finished 11th out of the 18 total competitors in the race.
“It was crazy. I don’t think I have been in that fast of a race ever,” Remeikis said. “I am happy with it. It’s neat to run at states, and it’s such a cool experience.
The race was won by Zane Bergen of Niwot High School. Bergen ran a time of 1:52.07 to beat out Connor McCormick of Longmont High School by over two seconds.
With some state experience under his belt, Remeikis is already looking forward to his next opportunity to compete at the state meet next year as a senior.
“Hopefully, next year, I can race all three distance events — the 800, 1600 and 3200,” Remeikis said. “And I hope I can lead a couple other guys on the team to state so that we can have a pack here.”
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