Quentin Ring Owns the Ring

You may have seen him blazing around the track. You may not have; after all, he is very fast. Regardless, all it takes is one experience to keep you talking about Quentin Ring for weeks. Whether it is the time he torched the 1600-meter field with a 59.19-second last 400, the time that the 1600-meter field torched him as he ran the last 400 of the 1600 in 75.83 seconds so that he could run the 800-meter in under two minutes, or the time he passed everyone after half of the 800 only to look back, slow down, and shrug as he coasted over the finish line in first, the senior has contributed not only a new electricity to the races on the oval, but a sense of mystery as well by keeping people guessing as to which event he will put maximum effort into. “I just like to be unpredictable,” Ring said. The double dose of intrigue has provided a much-needed stimulant for a sport struggling to establish a fan base. "I’m impressed," junior Emma Ravenscroft said, "I’m almost as big a fan of Quentin Ring as he is of me." Unfortunately, Ring says his rollercoaster performances have created tension with head coach John Sletten, who recently provided Ring and teammate Cale Brakke with a graph of their event performances which looked like a rollercoaster. "[Sletten] doesn’t like me very much," Ring said. Despite his unpopularity with some, the general population is wild for him; in fact, he made a strong bid for team captain this season, falling to Brent Novey despite his ability to create handshakes with those in his row for sprint drills. He said that this may have been for the better, though. Ring’s road to domination began when he "realized he wasn’t good at anything else." He showed occasional glimmers of potential during his freshman and sophomore campaigns, but it was his junior year in which Ring burst onto the scene as an impact player in the middle distance and distance divisions of Ames High Track. His 1:58 split in the 4×800-meter relay at the 99th Drake Relays catapulted him to stardom. Looking back, however, Ring doesn’t find it so landmark. "I was kind of possessed, just doing my thing. What was that like? I don’t know, I kind of blacked out for most of it," he said. He confirmed that the post-race vomit was the best tasting vomit of his life. Later in the season, Ring’s bold performance in the 1600 at the district track meet inspired many, as he ran away from the field in the first half of the race, only to suffer through the rest and hang on for a state meet-qualifying time of 4:34. This season Ring’s personal bests consist of a 4:29 1600, 1:57 800, and :52 400, run in a relay. With so much versatility, one questions what his best event is. While this is disputed by many, Ring called the 800 his specialty, with a preference for the relay 800, because he likes to beat Brakke and "rub it in [his] face." With only the state meet remaining in the season, your chances to see Ring run are limited, but the senior is planning to attempt to run in college, and is attending Iowa State, which is nearby, so you will likely see him out and about during the summer. Then again, maybe not; he is very fast.