A record-breaking amount of teams participated in Dixie State University’s Great Race Friday with rushes of adrenaline and competitive skirmishes.
Delivering slightly more competition than past races, 32 teams participated in this year’s highlighting D-Week event, said Gregory J. Layton, a senior English major from Cottonwood Heights and future student body president. The competitors braved the fierce obstacle course as they powered through their sprints, surged through their swims and, of course, plunged through the famous, yet punishing, mud trench.
Student Body President Carlos Morgan, a senior communication major from Santa Clara, addressed the teams and spectators before the Great Race began, praising the competitors and everyone who participated in D-Week.
“(The Great Race) is my favorite tradition just because of how the community and all the students get together,” Morgan said. “The theme for this D-Week is ‘We Are Dixie,’ and I think the Great Race really emphasizes that. Everyone gets together for this tradition. We have people from the high schools, people from the community, we have clubs, and we have all these students who come together to show what it means to be a part of Dixie.”
The cross-country team Voltron snatched first place with a time of 18:12, while the Intramurals team claimed second place with a time of 18:43. Team Campus Wreck took third place with a time of 19:04.
Brianna Moyle, a sophomore elementary education major from Mesa, Ariz., ripped through the finish-line ribbon, beaming as her team claimed first place.
“(The Great Race) makes you feel more a part of the community, and it’s just lots of fun to get with some friends and do something together,” Moyle said.
Jaelle Judkins, a senior elementary education major from St. George, flew over the finish line soon after, representing the Intramurals team.
“The race is a great way to get involved,” Judkins said, panting from her sprint. “It’s fun if you’re competitive at all; it’s just a great time, and also you meet people and you get to compete against different clubs, so what better thing than that?”
Calee Drew, a senior English major from Las Vegas, crossed the finish line representing her team, Campus Wreck, pumping both of her fists high into the air.
“Seeing my teammates run around the first lap was exhilarating, and I was so proud, but getting the baton for the last lap is so nerve-racking because you don’t know who’s behind you or how fast you need to go, but it was a great experience,” Drew said. “It’s just the best activity during D-Week because you get to make a team with all of your friends and work together to win at the end.”
President Stephen Nadauld made an appearance as the Great Race was about to begin and enthusiastically addressed the teams and spectators as he praised DSU as a whole.
“Three weeks from now [DSU will] have a record number of graduates, a month ago we had a record year with the legislature in terms of funding, we have a record number of Great Race teams, and we have a world-class clock tower,” Nadauld said. “Is this a great university or what? Hurrah for Dixie!”