Rob Ford, Keith Butler and Canadian Olympic Competition


By Andrew Maloney

© Copyright - 2012 - Athletics Illustrated

Rob Ford's New Perspective

As nice as it is to see Toronto mayor Rob Ford finally stop bashing the city’s hosting of the Pan-American Games and finally come around to the fact that it is a positive for the city and the region in a number of ways (that should have been rather obvious to him from the beginning), it is almost a certainty he will have to buy a ticket to that event like everyone else. After proving to be even more of a buffoon in office than even I could have ever imagined before his election two years ago, he will likely be unceremoniously turfed from office if any warm body with a pulse opposes him in two years.

See the Toronto Sun article on the subject of his miracle epiphany.

See: It does not require a giant leap of the imagination to believe Toronto mayoral candidate Rob Ford might not be the biggest proponent of physical fitness, article.

On Canada's Young Olympians

It is a positive development to see the volume and youth populating the Canadian Olympic team as they head into the 2012 London Olympic Games. Regardless of whether that increased volume translates into medals in the short term or not, it is undoubtedly a positive development for the sport in this country.

In the women’s 100 hurdles in particular, we had five worthy Olympic candidates all of whom had the potential to make the final. That two of them – former World indoor champion Perdita Felicien and Olympic bronze medalist Priscilla Lopes-Schliep – did not make the team is not an indictment of a “flawed” selection process, as it was head-scratchingly spun by some in the media after the two failed to finish top-three at the Canadian Olympic Track and Field Trials in Calgary, Alberta that took place at the end of June. Rather it should be viewed as a positive reminder of Canadian depth in that event. Every four years, the ultra-competitive U.S. Olympic Trials see a potential or former Olympic champion or medalist left off the team for the same reason. It’s not necessarily a bad thing when competition allows the cream to rise to the top.

On Keith Butler - long-time coach in Victoria, BC

After several years of fine work with the University of Victoria and Oak Bay High School, it appears Keith Butler has accepted a promotion at his school in Oak Bay and will be moving on from his coaching position with the UVic Vikes. Butler was instrumental in helping the Vikes men's and women's teams rise to top-three ranking in Canada.

From Butler Interview:

Butler lead a very successful high school program where he coached at Oak Bay High School for over 20 years. Since 1989 Oak Bay Girls won eleven provincial championships and finished second four times, meanwhile the Boys won six times and placed second four times. Both the Girls and Boys junior teams won the Island Zone Championships 19 of 20 times, placing second just once each, the same year (1992).

Oak Bay High School happens to be located just a few minutes down the road from the Vike’s campus.

Butler the athlete:

Butler ran competitively into early master’s category (40-plus). He was a varsity athlete at UVic from 1980-86. He won CIS All-Canadian (cross-country) in 1983. Butler was the Canada West 5000m indoor champion in 1986.

Personal bests:

800m – 1:51.9

1500m – 3:43.6

5000m – 14:18

10k – 30:28

Anyone familiar with Keith or his work with the program understands how much he did and how deeply this loss will be felt by that running community. We wish him well.


Andrew Maloney graduated from the University of Tulsa with a Masters of Business Administration / Juris Doctor of Law

Represented Canada in 800m and holds two national records in the indoor and outdoor 4x800m relay

Coached six years in the NCAA at the University of Tulsa and currently at the University of Guelph

Hockey agent with Maloney & Thompson Sports Advisors in Guelph, Ontario