The UCSB track and field team never ceases to amaze, shaving off more seconds and demolishing records every meet. On Friday, the Gauchos traveled to Stanford for the Cardinal Invitational and on Sunday they participated in the Steve Scott Invitational held at UC Irvine.

At Stanford, senior Chris White took 16 seconds off his best time in the 10,000 meter run, setting a new personal record, placing him second in the all-time UCSB books, and ranking him 19th in the nation. At the meet he finished 11th among the top 10,000 meter runners in the nation. White also has an excellent chance of qualifying for one of 27 spots at the national NCAA meet.

“It’s a 99.9 percent chance he’s going. He stunned all the Gauchos. We knew he was fast, but to look that good the whole time proves he’s a national class runner,” UCSB Head Coach Pete Dolan said.

Junior Ben Armel also impressed Gaucho fans with his performance in the 800 run A. He placed fourth at the meet with a time of 1:48.00, only two seconds shy of the Olympic Trial qualifying time.

“He has a 50/50 chance of making the trials,” Dolan said. “He ran that fast without being his best. There’s a faster time in him.”

In the men’s 800 run B, sophomore Tetlo Emmen placed second and displayed confidence in his run. Emmen also has a good chance of qualifying for nationals in the upcoming weeks and his time this weekend put him in position as a favorite.

For the women at Stanford, it was all about the middle distance running. Junior Desiree Leek finished second in the 1500, qualifying for regionals and setting the fourth all-time best Gaucho time. Senior Cosette Smith took sixth in the same race and improved her personal best.

“The conditions were less than ideal [for Leek]. It was very crowded, but she learned to throw some elbows and get aggressive,” Dolan said.

Sophomores Lauren and Lindsay Christman took fifth and sixth, respectively, in the 800, smashing more records. The sisters now hold the fifth and sixth all-time best Gaucho times. Lauren holds the best Big West time for the 800 while Lindsay has the third.

At Irvine, the women’s 4 x 400 relay team set a new school record by four seconds. The men’s 4 x 400 also faired well, setting a new personal best of the year and posting the fastest time at UCSB since 1987. Senior Desiree DeJesus broke the school record in the 3000 steeplechase and qualified for regionals.

“This meet was big for her,” Dolan said. “She’s struggled this year, but she came through very well.”

Sophomore Eugene Bradley qualified for regionals in the shot put and fellow Gaucho Sean Thomas-Bignami took a foot off his personal best in the pole vault to take second at the meet.

In two weeks, the Gauchos will compete in the Big West Championships.

“All coaches dream about having great momentum going into the championship and we definitely have momentum,” Dolan said. “We’re setting ourselves up for something great.”