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Bulldogs to Host Historic Harvard-Yale/Oxford-Cambridge Meet Saturday

Ellie Atkinson and Gemma Shepherd (Photo by Stephen Fritzer)
Ellie Atkinson and Gemma Shepherd (Photo by Stephen Fritzer)

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – This Saturday, the Yale women's track and field team will team up with Ivy League rival Harvard for their 46th contest against Oxford and Cambridge. A rivalry dating back to the 1894, the Transatlantic Series is the oldest ongoing international track and field meet in the world.  Since 1971, the meet has been held every two years, alternating between being hosted in England and America. This year the Bulldogs have the honor of hosting the meet in New Haven in the Dewitt Cuyler Athletic Complex. 

Since 1993, the meet uses traditional British scoring, with the winner of each event earning just one point for their respective team. The winning pair of teams essentially becomes the squad that takes home the most first place wins. There are awards for the women's team of Harvard-Yale as well as for the combined scored of both the women's and men's teams. On the women's side, Harvard-Yale has won each of the last nine contests since 1999, and leads the overall series 12-4. Meanwhile, Harvard-Yale has won each of the last 11 contests in the combined team scores, having last lost to Oxford Cambridge in 1993. The Bulldogs have dominated the overall series, losing only two of the last 28 meetings since 1959. 

The meet kicks off late on Saturday afternoon on the field with the 10,000-meter run at 2:15 p.m. The full schedule is available at the bottom of this article. Traditionally, the two teams decide on having only a select group of athletes represent the team based on performance. When the meet was hosted at Oxford in the summer of 2015, for example, the participants were based on the results of that spring's Harvard-Yale meet. With that competition being slated for next week, however, it is unclear who will be participating this weekend. 

If past performances are indicative, however, then the Bulldogs will surely dominate on the roster for middle-distance events. Specifically, the trio of seniors Meredith Rizzo, Frances Schmiede and Emily Waligurski will most likely be featured on the combined roster. They will most likely be featured in either the 800- or 1,500-meter runs since they top most of Harvard's current athletes. Also likely to compete this weekend is freshman Gemma Shepherd, who according to last season's performances was topped by just one of Harvard's distance athletes, freshman phenom Judy Pendergast. Additionally, sophomore Andrea Masterson is among one of the top distance athletes in the league, posting notable times in the 3,000- and 5,000-meter runs. Other prospective competitors for the Bulldogs includes underclassmen on the sprints team like freshmen Lillian Enes and Sydney Holmes, or upperclassmen like senior Chandler Olson. 

From the field side of things, senior captain Kate Simon seems to be a likely participant in this weekend's contest as one of the better throwers from both teams. Additionally, freshmen Elizabeth Adelson and Olivia Mooney will likely be featured in the high jump since they are among the best performers from both teams. 

Yet it is hard to predict who will be featured this weekend. In order to watch such a historic meet, head to the Dewitt Cuyler Athletic Complex at 2:15 p.m. and catch the action live. The meet's events run until around 6:15 p.m. Just catch a shuttle in front of the Payne Whitney Gymnasium to the Athletic Fields. A full schedule of events can be found at this link

Preview by Ariel A. Sánchez '19, Yale Sports Publicity