Track athletes soar to new heights

For track and field athletes, there is a club focusing on getting teens ready to qualify for the summer games.

ALTHOUGH EXTRACURRICULAR school activities can’t be run by teachers due to the job action currently on, for track and field athletes there is a club focusing on getting teens ready to qualify for the summer games.

The Terrace Track Club practises after school and recently had eight of its athletes participate in the Sub Zero Track Meet in Prince George.

The team placed second to the host club with 10 firsts, four seconds and six third place finishes, says coach Dighton Haynes, who is one of five team coaches.

Summer Schulte led the way, winning discus and javelin for 14 and 15-year-old girls with throws of 19.23 and 24.88, respectively, said Haynes.

Cameron Netzel easily won the 16 and 17-year-old boys high jump with a new personal best of 1.73m, topping his ninth place finish of 1.65 m for Grades 8 and 9 at high school provincials last year.

“[It was] a great start to the season for Cameron and the team,” said Haynes, adding that almost all of the team reached personal bests.

Hayden Cote competed in six events: 100m, 400m, high jump, triple jump, long jump and javelin, placing first a number of times.

Haynes is hoping out of the 30 athletes on the team that 10 or 12 will try out for the summer games.

“The track club is alive and kicking and there’s very good athletes competing,” said Haynes.

“If we can build on the summer games this year, it would really help the team overall in the future.

“Once they get hooked on it, they just want to stay with it,” he added about the students and track. The club heads to Kamloops in a week for a meet, then to Smithers for summer games tryouts at the end of May, and returns to Prince George in June for another meet.