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B.C. high school athletes race together for the first time in over a year in Saanich

Vancouver Island High School Cross-Country Championships sees locals claim top honours
Runners from various high schools in B.C. came together to race for the first time in over a year at Elk-Beaver Lake Park. (Photo courtesy of Brad Cunningham)

High school athletes are coming together and resuming competitive running this fall after a year away due to the pandemic.

Top high school cross-country runners from various schools competed in the Vancouver Island High School Cross-Country Championships at Elk-Beaver Lake Park on Wednesday, Oct. 20.

Tion McLeish, a Grade 12 student from St. Michaels University School, won the senior boys’ race and said that it is a gift to run competitively and in a group again since last year’s race was done individually.

“A lot of people think, ‘oh I’m running by myself so it’s no pressure,’ but you lose a lot of motivation to run fast, so definitely being back with another 200 kids on the starting line is really nice to be a part of again.”

The senior girls’ race saw Ruby Broadbent from Parkland school take first place.

Brad Cunningham, a coach and teacher at Reynolds Secondary, told Black Press Media that it was healing to come together again in an active way.

“It was nice to operate as a team because during the pandemic I think a lot of us felt like we were operating individually rather than collectively.”

In the junior boys’ race, Ethan Nozick from Claremont finished in first place. Alexa Dow from Frances Kelsey Secondary School finished first in the junior girls’ race.

ALSO READ: Aiden Grew retains crown for fourth time in race up Mount Douglas

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