PHILADELPHIA-Director of Track & Field/Cross Country Steve Dolan announced the complete men's and women's 2015-16 track & field schedule on Thursday. In addition to the 122nd edition of the Penn Relays, the University of Pennsylvania will also host two events at Franklin Field this year —the Philadelphia College Classic on March 19th and the Penn Challenge on March 26th.
The Quakers will open the indoor season at the the Lehigh Invitational on Dec. 5. After the New Year, the team begins the indoor season in earnest on Jan. 16 with the Mountain Hawk Challenge followed by the Tiger Open at Princeton on Jan. 23. The Quakers close out the month of January at the Welsey A. Brown Invitational on the 30th.
February is a busy month, as the team will compete at the Villanova Invitational (Feb. 6), the Manhattan Invitational (Feb. 17), the Princeton Invitational (Feb. 21) and finally, the Heptagonal Championships (Feb. 27-28) hosted by Cornell in Ithaca, N.Y.
The NCAA Championships will finish the indoor season and take place March 11-12 in Birmingham, Ala.
A week after the NCAA meet, Penn will open the outdoor season with the fourth annual Philadelphia College Classic at historic Franklin Field. After the Classic, the team gets an extra week at home as the Red and Blue host the Penn Challenge featuring Army, Manhattan, Rider and Villanova teams.
The first week of April sees the team splitting up, with some Quakers heading to the Stanford Invite and Florida Relays, while others journey to Austin for the Texas Relays, April 1-2.
Penn will again navigate south, this time to Charlottesville, Va., for the Lou Onesty Invitational on April 9, before returning to Pennsylvania for the Bill Butler Invitational at West Chester on April 16. The Quakers then venture to Princeton for the Larry Ellis Invitational for April 22 and 23.
However, all roads eventually lead to track and field's most anticipated meet of the year: The Penn Relays.
2016 marks Penn's 122nd consecutive year of hosting The Relays. Last year, there were 48,920in attendance at historic Franklin Field on Saturday alone and 110,587for the entire weekend — eighth-highest attendance ever in the event's long history.
The Relays signify the conclusion of the regular season leading to the Heptagonal Championships at Princeton (May 7-8) and ECAC/IC4A Championships the following weekend also at Princeton (May 14-15).
For those that qualify, the NCAA East Preliminaries are May 26-28 in Jacksonville, Fla., and the NCAA Finals are set for Eugene, Ore., June 8-11.
The USA Junior Championships take place June 24-26 and the USA Olympic Trials span from July 1-10.