A teen competing for the Nanaimo Track and Field Club broke a 30-year-old Canadian record this past weekend.
Olivia Lundman, from Lantzville, set a new national standard in the 3,000-metre race walk in her U18 category on Saturday in Kamloops, finishing in 14 minutes, 25.74 seconds. The mark was 11 and a half seconds better than the previous record, which had been set by Quebec’s Mylene Dupere in 1990.
A Nanaimo track club press release notes that Lundman had targeted the Canadian record going into the event. The race walker said her pace started to fall off about halfway through as the cold air was hard on her lungs, but she was able to dig deep and finish strong.
This past weekend’s event was the first race of the season for Lundman as COVID-19 cancelled other events. She said it was a struggle to stay motivated, but she held out hope for a chance to race.
The Kamloops meet was primarily put together for middle-distance runners, but Lundman reached out to organizers and race director Brian Beck was able to arrange for the race walk to take place with a sole competitor.
“His willingness to help out an athlete whom he had never met really embodies the spirit of track and field in our province,” Lundman said.