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It is the largest track and field competition in the world. This week, almost every top track athlete from high school through Olympic development level will travel to Philadelphia for the Penn Relay Carnival. This lineup includes all the best from the world of women's collegiate track and field, including Florida State, Louisiana State, Texas, Tennessee and Miami. While the Penn Relays offer top-level competition for these and every other team competing, the Carnival represents more than this to the Penn women's track team. "When you wear Penn and you're at the Penn Relays, it takes on a whole new meaning," Penn assistant coach Tony Tenisci said. Penn, despite carrying the job of representing the host institution, is also aware of the competition the Relays offer and knows it must turn in quality performances. "It is very exciting, because no matter where you go, you are not going to find better competition than the Penn Relays," Tenisci said. "Even at nationals, you don't have the same depth in some events." The Red and Blue will be keying in on several important events, especially the sprint relays. Tenisci expects good showings from the 4x100 meter, 4x200 meter and sprint medley relays. Sprinter Vicki Moore, who will be running in the 4x200 and sprint medley, also has high expectations for herself and her teammates. Moore believes the Quakers should definitely challenge and possibly break the school records in both relay events. "We've been training so hard, so we should come out and run very well," Moore said. Another relay team that has high expectations for itself is the 4x400 meter relay. The team of Jen Roy, Moore, Jessica Mitchell and Sonya Crosswell will run at 4:30 tomorrow afternoon. This particular foursome is coming off a weekend in which it set a school record of 3:43.7, defeating Ivy League rival Cornell in a dual meet. This race is especially important for the Penn women because the heat will consist entirely of teams who the Quakers will meet at the Heptagonal Championships. All eight Ivy teams, as well as Navy, will run in this heat. The Heptagonal heat is one of 13 4x400 heats, and if Penn qualifies, it will run in the championship heat Saturday. Moore believes the Quakers' toughest competition should come from Harvard and Brown, the winner of last year's race. Last year, the Bears ran 3:42.72, approximately one second below the school record Penn set last week. "I think we have a good shot to win the event," Moore said. "We should run faster because we'll have more than one team pushing us, unlike last week." The sprint relays, however, are not the only areas in which the Quakers expect to perform well. Tenisci believes several athletes can make the finals in the jumping and throwing events. One athlete who should perform well is thrower Luana Botelho, who will throw the shot and the discus at the Relays. Botelho, a junior, won the shot put against Cornell with a throw of 13.40 meters. "Shot should be a good event for us," Botelho said. "Discus has been up and down, so we're just looking to go out, to have fun and do well." With the Heptagonal and ECAC championships only a few weeks away, the Penn Relays are the last chance for the Quakers to get in good performances against the competition. With Penn hosting the 104th running of the Penn Relay Carnival, the Red and Blue find the best competition in the nation right at their doorstep.

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