Marble Falls High School senior runner Bailey Goggans has a world record. On Jan. 17 at the VA Showcase in Virginia Beach, she and her 4×800-meter relay team won the girls’ under-20 division in 8 minutes and 37.20 seconds, breaking a record that has stood since 1991.
Her teammates are Roisin Willis of Wisconsin, Juliette Whittaker of Maryland, and Sophia Gorriaran of Rhode Island. The four girls met while competing at races across the country.
“It honestly doesn’t feel real,” Goggans said about being a world record holder. “I can’t wrap my head around it. These are the top 800 runners in the country. A lot of people considered us the Dream Team.”
The previous record of 8:37.71 was set by a Jamaican squad at the Penn Relays outdoor meet at the University of Pennsylvania. Along with beating the overall record, Goggans and her teammates shattered the previous indoor record of 8:53.67 set in 2002.
All four girls are ranked in the top 10 U.S. high school runners in the 800 meters, so spectators saw a world-class race. Willis took the first leg, followed by Goggans, Whittaker, and Gorriaran.
“I always wanted to be on a fast relay team of 800 runners,” Goggans said. “It’s not super common.”
Goggans also competed in the individual 800-meter race at the event, finishing fourth in 2 minutes and 7 seconds while battling a foot injury.
The Marble Falls High School track-and-field team begins its season in February, and Goggans plans to defend her back-to-back Class 5A state championships in the 800 meters this spring. She missed her junior year of track after the University Interscholastic League canceled the season due to the pandemic.
“We’re going to play (the season) by ear because of COVID-19,” Goggans added.