February 12, 2004  
Volume 97, Issue 74  

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Jock Talk with Mustang men’s 4 x 400 metre relay team

Aaron Lynett/Gazette
I WONDER WHAT ELSE THE RELAY TEAM PASSES AROUND?? Western’s men’s relay team (left to right) Gavin McTavish, Christian Heffernan, Bob Westman and Randy McAuley are awarded the Purple Pipe for their record time in the 4x 400 relay... not for their timely arrivals to Purple Pipe interviews.

What attracted you guys to track and field over other team sports?
Westman: I used to play a lot of basketball, but with track you really lay it out for yourself and you can’t hide behind anything — it’s your performance.

McTavish: I played hockey a lot, but I’d still consider track a team sport. You rely on the good performance of all of your teammates for success. It doesn’t really help if one member of the team runs a really good race if the rest of the team is out of sync.

How was the competition at the Notre Dame tournament?
McAuley: There was incredible competition. I mean, we were competing against guys with Division I scholarships. It was great that we won.
Westman: Absolutely amazing. I think it was the best indoor meet I’ve been to in my four years here. It was really intense.

Did you notice any difference in the training or preparedness of the American schools compared to Western?
Heffernan: I noticed that in the [United] States it’s very professional. These guys are making money for their schools and really drawing attention to themselves and the school.

Westman: I guess they can afford to be really prepared, because they’re usually taking Pottery 101 (laughs). One main thing I noticed was a lot of depth on the American teams.

How confident were you guys going into the tournament?
McAuley: Well, we weren’t expecting to run the record time — it wasn’t in our minds at all. The great thing about track is although it is very competitive, it’s more about beating yourself and your personal bests rather than the competition.

McTavish: We brought our “A” game and also brought a real team aspect to the table.

Westman: We knew we were ready.

With such impressive results, is there anything you guys think you could still improve on?
McTavish: Coach Jim “Jungle” Parker really pushes us and he’s always setting new goals for us no matter what our results are.

Heffernan: [Jungle] sets our goals for us and then really drives us to succeed. We have to make those goals.

You guys wear a lot of spandex, right?
Westman: Yes, yes we do (laughs).

Heffernan: Yeah, the uniforms aren’t very big.

How do you deal with chafing?
Heffernan: Good underwear (laughs).

McTavish and McAuley: Under Armor saved our lives.

Westman: Not so much chafing, if you watch what undies you wear on race day. You don’t want things getting out of place.

What’s your favourite sports movie?
Heffernan: Any Given Sunday.

McTavish: Prefontaine. I know it’s a [long] distance movie, but it’s still good.

McAuley: I’m going to have to break the mould and go with Rudy. I guess it’s fitting because we were just at Notre Dame.

Westman: The Rookie!

Can I be your Valentine?
McTavish: Uhh, no.

McAuley: No.

Heffernan. No, but I know Bob’s single though (laughs).

Westman. No, I’m saving that for someone else (laughs).

—James Hayes



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