Most exciting OFSAA Race
06/10/2012 1:39:53 PM
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Just interested in seeing what everyone thought was the most exciting race on the weekend. There were lots to choose from and not all were finals like the Sr mens 800m semis where 1:53s did not make the final. Personally I have never seen a more exciting finish in a 3000m race in a while than the Sr mens 3000m with 5 different leaders over the course of the race (King, Baxter, Sikobwabo, Flannagan and Coughler) and 10 lead changes and I think 6 changes in the last 600m. They finished with a 62 last lap.
Just interested in seeing what everyone thought was the most exciting race on the weekend. There were lots to choose from and not all were finals like the Sr mens 800m semis where 1:53s did not make the final.

Personally I have never seen a more exciting finish in a 3000m race in a while than the Sr mens 3000m with 5 different leaders over the course of the race (King, Baxter, Sikobwabo, Flannagan and Coughler) and 10 lead changes and I think 6 changes in the last 600m. They finished with a 62 last lap.
06/10/2012 2:39:54 PM
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Midget girls 300mH. OFSAA record coming in was 43.95(ish). Lexi Aitken set the OFSAA record in the prelim with a 43.62 but was pushed to an even better effort in the finals. In the end Aitken wins the gold in 43.13, Nicole Skimming takes the silver in 43.74 & Simone Wark takes the bronze in 44.08. Skimming & Wark are teammates & brand new to the world of hurdles. Watch for them to push each other to even better results in the future.
Midget girls 300mH. OFSAA record coming in was 43.95(ish). Lexi Aitken set the OFSAA record in the prelim with a 43.62 but was pushed to an even better effort in the finals. In the end Aitken wins the gold in 43.13, Nicole Skimming takes the silver in 43.74 & Simone Wark takes the bronze in 44.08. Skimming & Wark are teammates & brand new to the world of hurdles. Watch for them to push each other to even better results in the future.
06/10/2012 3:05:36 PM
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@310RunningCoach How about Bellemore's move at 400 to go in the 1500.. I thought for sure Cory had it, but guess I was wrong
@310RunningCoach How about Bellemore's move at 400 to go in the 1500.. I thought for sure Cory had it, but guess I was wrong
06/10/2012 3:49:10 PM
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Yes the Sr 1500 was a great finish as well. When Bellemore went it was decisive, I wonder if he had waited for 50-60m more would he have been able to hold it to the end. At 200 to go I thought he was a lock, I think he had a 3+ sec lead! The guys closed fast over the last 150.
Yes the Sr 1500 was a great finish as well. When Bellemore went it was decisive, I wonder if he had waited for 50-60m more would he have been able to hold it to the end. At 200 to go I thought he was a lock, I think he had a 3+ sec lead! The guys closed fast over the last 150.
06/10/2012 8:45:15 PM
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Sr. Boys 800m was interesting. I'm surprised McBride didn't go right to the lead. I thought for a second he might not win. And what was with Sebastian Saville...the gun went and he didn't. You could tell from his starting stance that something was up. why didn't he run? someone else could have taken his place.
Sr. Boys 800m was interesting. I'm surprised McBride didn't go right to the lead. I thought for a second he might not win.
And what was with Sebastian Saville...the gun went and he didn't. You could tell from his starting stance that something was up. why didn't he run? someone else could have taken his place.
06/10/2012 10:24:23 PM
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Pretty exciting to see a MG go 2:09 in the 800, and crush a long time record!
Pretty exciting to see a MG go 2:09 in the 800, and crush a long time record!
06/10/2012 10:49:02 PM
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I don't know why Sebastian even went to the starting line . He was wearing his training shoes and had no intention of racing. He limped away after a couple of steps. Maybe someone can shed some light on what happened.
I don't know why Sebastian even went to the starting line . He was wearing his training shoes and had no intention of racing. He limped away after a couple of steps. Maybe someone can shed some light on what happened.
06/10/2012 10:51:31 PM
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I agree watching Kailee Sawyer run her 800 was pretty special. She is one of several girls graduating in 2015 that will stamp their names on OFSAA records for the next 3 years. If you compare the Midget to Junior girls results this year the younger athletes outperformed the older girls in a bunch of events.
I agree watching Kailee Sawyer run her 800 was pretty special. She is one of several girls graduating in 2015 that will stamp their names on OFSAA records for the next 3 years. If you compare the Midget to Junior girls results this year the younger athletes outperformed the older girls in a bunch of events.
06/10/2012 11:19:01 PM
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I think Saville had a problem with his ankle. I'm not sure why he didn't scratch but that was an interesting race none the less. McBride had a world of a time holding off Buttinger. I must say the most impressive run of the weekend was the MG 800, Sawyer negative splitted that 2:09 and looked super strong doing it. I would love to see her in the 1500 (I think she ran a few in AO's) as she would be very tough to beat with that speed. In terms of sheer excitement I would say that the SB 1500 was stellar with Bellemore's huge move and Yves nipping him at the line. Remarkable stuff!
I think Saville had a problem with his ankle. I'm not sure why he didn't scratch but that was an interesting race none the less. McBride had a world of a time holding off Buttinger.

I must say the most impressive run of the weekend was the MG 800, Sawyer negative splitted that 2:09 and looked super strong doing it. I would love to see her in the 1500 (I think she ran a few in AO's) as she would be very tough to beat with that speed.

In terms of sheer excitement I would say that the SB 1500 was stellar with Bellemore's huge move and Yves nipping him at the line. Remarkable stuff!
06/11/2012 10:06:21 PM
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@310RunningCoach This was true two years ago in London as well. These same girls are now seniors, and a new crop of midgets is running as fast as they are. For the past 10-12 years, we've seen crazy-fast midget and junior girls times, yet the senior records at 800, 1500, and 3k remain untouched. They are now almost 30 years old! We have a serious problem when it comes to developing female distance runners beyond the age of 15 or 16. There are a few individuals who continue to do well beyond grades 9 and 10, but even they never run more than few seconds faster in grade 12 than they did in grade 9, if they improve at all (hence the longevity of the senior records). Most girls get slower or disappear completely. Could it be that running super-fast in grade 9 and 10 is actually [i]counterproductive[/i] to long term development among girls (in particular)? I've been inclined for many years to think so. Whatever it takes to run super-fast at these ages certainly doesn't seem conducive to long term development. I mean, look at the state of senior women's distance running in Canada at the moment (at distances above 800m). Even the ranks of [i]junior[/i] women's running are pretty slim at the top levels.
@310RunningCoach This was true two years ago in London as well. These same girls are now seniors, and a new crop of midgets is running as fast as they are. For the past 10-12 years, we've seen crazy-fast midget and junior girls times, yet the senior records at 800, 1500, and 3k remain untouched. They are now almost 30 years old! We have a serious problem when it comes to developing female distance runners beyond the age of 15 or 16. There are a few individuals who continue to do well beyond grades 9 and 10, but even they never run more than few seconds faster in grade 12 than they did in grade 9, if they improve at all (hence the longevity of the senior records). Most girls get slower or disappear completely. Could it be that running super-fast in grade 9 and 10 is actually counterproductive to long term development among girls (in particular)? I've been inclined for many years to think so. Whatever it takes to run super-fast at these ages certainly doesn't seem conducive to long term development. I mean, look at the state of senior women's distance running in Canada at the moment (at distances above 800m). Even the ranks of junior women's running are pretty slim at the top levels.
06/11/2012 11:40:14 PM
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@oldster I'm not sure if that is the case Oldster. I think it is really about the natural growth and development of girls. The difference today is that we see the GR 9 and 10 girls who are well trained and previously we didn't. From Gr 10 - 12, they develop in ways that does not help running. Their strength to weight ratio decreases, and their hips widen, causing a bad angle in their knee that gives them all kinds of injury problems (hip and knee - called the unhappy triad). I think the trick is to decrease the training intensity in this time period and try to keep them interested until about 20 when they start improving again. The only problem with the good training at midget age, is that their expectations are too high for when they become seniors. I've noticed this problem for decades and it is widespread throughout all the sports, causing a huge dropout rate in all sports with 16 and 17 yr old girls.
@oldster

I'm not sure if that is the case Oldster. I think it is really about the natural growth and development of girls. The difference today is that we see the GR 9 and 10 girls who are well trained and previously we didn't.

From Gr 10 - 12, they develop in ways that does not help running. Their strength to weight ratio decreases, and their hips widen, causing a bad angle in their knee that gives them all kinds of injury problems (hip and knee - called the unhappy triad). I think the trick is to decrease the training intensity in this time period and try to keep them interested until about 20 when they start improving again.

The only problem with the good training at midget age, is that their expectations are too high for when they become seniors. I've noticed this problem for decades and it is widespread throughout all the sports, causing a huge dropout rate in all sports with 16 and 17 yr old girls.
06/12/2012 12:36:54 AM
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@Canrunner2662 I don't think anything about the basic physiology of girls has changed in the past 30 years (millennia!?); yet, we are seeing far greater depth and quality in the ranks of 14 and 15 year olds combined with an almost exactly proportional [i]decrease[/i] in depth and quality in the ranks of fully mature female athletes (a quick look at our recently compiled all-time lists for 3k to the marathon will confirm this). I would disagree that the training for 14 and 15 year olds is "better" now if it does not do a better job of setting our girls up for success from U19 to senior elite. I would emphasize that this problem is specific to the longer distances; we still put through some decent middle distance runners. Part of the problem is that our young women (and I mean 19+, not 14 and 15) are not running, or even attempting to run, the kinds of mileage levels that our young men seem willing to (and will likely be even more keen on as the U.S. distance revolution spreads north via the example of guys like Levins and Ahmed). Why is 100kpw still considered by many to be a lot of volume for mature female runners, when they are training for the same length events as men? I suspect that the steady diet of low volume and frequent fast track sessions on which many of them have been raised (and which is most responsible for the precocity of our 14 and 15 year olds), leaves them physically and psychologically ill-equipped for the realities of the sport as it is pursued by the world's best women. And the point it not that 14 and 15 year olds should be running a ton of easy volume; it's that easy running should [i]always[/i] constitute the main basis and the bulk of their training, even if it means they run a little slower at ages 13 to 15.
@Canrunner2662 I don't think anything about the basic physiology of girls has changed in the past 30 years (millennia!?); yet, we are seeing far greater depth and quality in the ranks of 14 and 15 year olds combined with an almost exactly proportional decrease in depth and quality in the ranks of fully mature female athletes (a quick look at our recently compiled all-time lists for 3k to the marathon will confirm this). I would disagree that the training for 14 and 15 year olds is "better" now if it does not do a better job of setting our girls up for success from U19 to senior elite.

I would emphasize that this problem is specific to the longer distances; we still put through some decent middle distance runners. Part of the problem is that our young women (and I mean 19+, not 14 and 15) are not running, or even attempting to run, the kinds of mileage levels that our young men seem willing to (and will likely be even more keen on as the U.S. distance revolution spreads north via the example of guys like Levins and Ahmed). Why is 100kpw still considered by many to be a lot of volume for mature female runners, when they are training for the same length events as men? I suspect that the steady diet of low volume and frequent fast track sessions on which many of them have been raised (and which is most responsible for the precocity of our 14 and 15 year olds), leaves them physically and psychologically ill-equipped for the realities of the sport as it is pursued by the world's best women. And the point it not that 14 and 15 year olds should be running a ton of easy volume; it's that easy running should always constitute the main basis and the bulk of their training, even if it means they run a little slower at ages 13 to 15.
06/12/2012 11:41:23 AM
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Anybody who doesn't concede that the grade 8 and 9 girls are running disproportionately fast, yet 3 -4 years later are no better and often slower is deluding themselves. Kailee Sawyer looks great, but how many people here say she is an absolute lock to run 2:05 by grade 12 which is only solid improvement each year. Lets hope she does, but the odds are not good. Her coaches did a good job by having her run 400 all season, and I think that is one of the keys for these younger girls-race under distance regularly. A couple of years ago we debated a young phenom on here whom I won't name, and her coach even chimed in to say how she was training within herself yada yada. She is now in grade 9 and nowhere to be seen on the results list. The facts do speak for themselves, but is anone listening?
Anybody who doesn't concede that the grade 8 and 9 girls are running disproportionately fast, yet 3 -4 years later are no better and often slower is deluding themselves.
Kailee Sawyer looks great, but how many people here say she is an absolute lock to run 2:05 by grade 12 which is only solid improvement each year. Lets hope she does, but the odds are not good. Her coaches did a good job by having her run 400 all season, and I think that is one of the keys for these younger girls-race under distance regularly.
A couple of years ago we debated a young phenom on here whom I won't name, and her coach even chimed in to say how she was training within herself yada yada.
She is now in grade 9 and nowhere to be seen on the results list.
The facts do speak for themselves, but is anone listening?
06/12/2012 12:39:25 PM
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[quote=powerboy]Anybody who doesn't concede that the grade 8 and 9 girls are running disproportionately fast, yet 3 -4 years later are no better and often slower is deluding themselves. Kailee Sawyer looks great, but how many people here say she is an absolute lock to run 2:05 by grade 12 which is only solid improvement each year. Lets hope she does, but the odds are not good. Her coaches did a good job by having her run 400 all season, and I think that is one of the keys for these younger girls-race under distance regularly. A couple of years ago we debated a young phenom on here whom I won't name, and her coach even chimed in to say how she was training within herself yada yada. She is now in grade 9 and nowhere to be seen on the results list. The facts do speak for themselves, but is anone listening?[/quote] @powerboy Bang on. For the past 10-12 years at least, we've had more and more grade 9s running low or sub 10:00, low to mid-4:30s, and 2:11-12; yet, exactly zero have been able to improve the few seconds it would take to break the Wiley's 15 and 3 record's, or Elise's 800 record over their next 3 or 4 years of high school. Zero. And still, year after year, we're expected to get excited about the next girl who's "absolutely going to re-write the OFSAA record books" (as if even THIS should be our focus when developing teenaged athletes). Even if one of these girls finally [i]does[/i] deliver, the model we're using (if there even IS a conscious model, beyond just trying to do what's required to win the next race) is still doing a disservice to literally dozens of talented and motivated young athletes. As I've been saying until blue in the face, why are people afraid of looking soberly at what our best ever senior elites were doing at ages 14 and 15 and trying to replicate it as best they can? Believe me, far more of these women were also-rans in their early years than prodigies. Yet, how did they manage to become the best later on? There appears to be very little curiousity around this question, and even less courage to pursue the lessons it can teach us as coaches and parents. Each new prodigy is always purported to be somehow "special" and "different" in a way that will render them immune to the fate of the dozens who came before them.
powerboy wrote:
Anybody who doesn't concede that the grade 8 and 9 girls are running disproportionately fast, yet 3 -4 years later are no better and often slower is deluding themselves.
Kailee Sawyer looks great, but how many people here say she is an absolute lock to run 2:05 by grade 12 which is only solid improvement each year. Lets hope she does, but the odds are not good. Her coaches did a good job by having her run 400 all season, and I think that is one of the keys for these younger girls-race under distance regularly.
A couple of years ago we debated a young phenom on here whom I won't name, and her coach even chimed in to say how she was training within herself yada yada.
She is now in grade 9 and nowhere to be seen on the results list.
The facts do speak for themselves, but is anone listening?


@powerboy Bang on. For the past 10-12 years at least, we've had more and more grade 9s running low or sub 10:00, low to mid-4:30s, and 2:11-12; yet, exactly zero have been able to improve the few seconds it would take to break the Wiley's 15 and 3 record's, or Elise's 800 record over their next 3 or 4 years of high school. Zero. And still, year after year, we're expected to get excited about the next girl who's "absolutely going to re-write the OFSAA record books" (as if even THIS should be our focus when developing teenaged athletes). Even if one of these girls finally does deliver, the model we're using (if there even IS a conscious model, beyond just trying to do what's required to win the next race) is still doing a disservice to literally dozens of talented and motivated young athletes. As I've been saying until blue in the face, why are people afraid of looking soberly at what our best ever senior elites were doing at ages 14 and 15 and trying to replicate it as best they can? Believe me, far more of these women were also-rans in their early years than prodigies. Yet, how did they manage to become the best later on? There appears to be very little curiousity around this question, and even less courage to pursue the lessons it can teach us as coaches and parents. Each new prodigy is always purported to be somehow "special" and "different" in a way that will render them immune to the fate of the dozens who came before them.
06/12/2012 6:19:40 PM
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Not sure how this discussion morphed into a proclamation of future failure for the extremely talented young women who performed like the champions they are. When I look at records I see names like Jessica Zelinka & Tabia Charles. Perhaps being phenomenal as a young athlete could mean you'll go on to represent Canada in the Olympics?
Not sure how this discussion morphed into a proclamation of future failure for the extremely talented young women who performed like the champions they are.

When I look at records I see names like Jessica Zelinka & Tabia Charles. Perhaps being phenomenal as a young athlete could mean you'll go on to represent Canada in the Olympics?
06/12/2012 6:49:33 PM
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@oldster I think you are being a tad harsh regarding some of those low 10 minute grade nine runners that have been successful early in their high school years and drop off. I don't think all of the blame should be put on the coach or training methods used. There are a myriad of factors that could be at play with respect to these athletes. They could be multi-sport athletes who choose to focus on Soccer, Swimming, Hockey or whatever else they love. They may get injured and have a tough time getting back to their pre-injury fitness, they may simply stop enjoying running. Of course we need to what we can to keep these talented athletes motivated and improving but I think we should embrace these amazing young runners instead of counting the days until they blow up. Truth be told, there is no 'magic bullet' to success at the senior level. There have been also-rans in high school who improve in university, there have been phenoms in high school who have carried success through their careers and are Olympians.
@oldster

I think you are being a tad harsh regarding some of those low 10 minute grade nine runners that have been successful early in their high school years and drop off. I don't think all of the blame should be put on the coach or training methods used. There are a myriad of factors that could be at play with respect to these athletes. They could be multi-sport athletes who choose to focus on Soccer, Swimming, Hockey or whatever else they love. They may get injured and have a tough time getting back to their pre-injury fitness, they may simply stop enjoying running.

Of course we need to what we can to keep these talented athletes motivated and improving but I think we should embrace these amazing young runners instead of counting the days until they blow up. Truth be told, there is no 'magic bullet' to success at the senior level. There have been also-rans in high school who improve in university, there have been phenoms in high school who have carried success through their careers and are Olympians.
06/12/2012 10:27:15 PM
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@oldster Everyone sees it, most deny it. I see Some of these fast 13-15 year olds and shake my head, it literally looks as though these girls would break in half if a gust of wind hit them! Yet, most are busting out super-sonic intervals 2 months before competition.. It boggles my mind to see something so thin move that fast. On the original topic, prodigies are everywhere and I try my best to avoid becoming impressed. McBride is the only exception, the kid's untouchable and is exceeding my expectations every year. I am actually curious as to why he failed to claim the 400 and 800 records at Ofsaa, instead only running 47- mid and almost losing to a guy he put 5 seconds on a week before. I'm not going to say what I think he should have done, but I'll leave it up to McBride and his coaches in Windsor to prove me wrong, yet again, this summer.
@oldster Everyone sees it, most deny it. I see Some of these fast 13-15 year olds and shake my head, it literally looks as though these girls would break in half if a gust of wind hit them! Yet, most are busting out super-sonic intervals 2 months before competition.. It boggles my mind to see something so thin move that fast.

On the original topic, prodigies are everywhere and I try my best to avoid becoming impressed. McBride is the only exception, the kid's untouchable and is exceeding my expectations every year. I am actually curious as to why he failed to claim the 400 and 800 records at Ofsaa, instead only running 47- mid and almost losing to a guy he put 5 seconds on a week before. I'm not going to say what I think he should have done, but I'll leave it up to McBride and his coaches in Windsor to prove me wrong, yet again, this summer.
06/12/2012 10:33:10 PM
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@TrackFan199999 It's not a question of being harsh or gentle. None of what you suggest is unique to the past decade or so. This is not about individuals; it is about persistent patterns. Where there are clear and persistent patterns over a period of years, there must be systemic forces at work. Either we care about creating a system where more athletes reach their full potential (and there is no way anyone reaches his or her full potential at 15 in this sport) or we don't. It's not a question of celebrating or not celebrating anyone's accomplishments. However, a 10:00 3k or a 2:10 800 is not in itself the least bit remarkable. Literally hundreds of athletes run these times every year in the university ranks in North America alone. It's only the assumption that doing this at age 14 indicates great future potential that makes these performances worth mentioning; and yet we know this assumption is rarely warranted (not never, but rarely). As for morphing the discussion, I only raised this point because, yet again, we were being invited to be impressed by the fact that "the midget girls ran as fast as the senior girls at OFSAA". I merely pointed out that this wasn't actually impressive at all, since the midget girls who were doing this 2 years ago have made little or no progress since then, and are now themselves being surpassed by a new group of midgets. Maybe it's because I'm inclined to look at the bigger picture, but I don't find this inspiring at all; as a coach, I find it mildly depressing when I consider it in contrast with how depleted the ranks of senior elites and sub-elites are in this country. I hate seeing the sport in this country turned into another version of soccer -- i.e. a sport done solely by children and students, in which few people seem at all interested in figuring out how to help athletes become the best they can possible be, and compete successfully as adults against the best in the world. Or, maybe I've just had enough of OFSAA threads!
@TrackFan199999 It's not a question of being harsh or gentle. None of what you suggest is unique to the past decade or so. This is not about individuals; it is about persistent patterns. Where there are clear and persistent patterns over a period of years, there must be systemic forces at work. Either we care about creating a system where more athletes reach their full potential (and there is no way anyone reaches his or her full potential at 15 in this sport) or we don't. It's not a question of celebrating or not celebrating anyone's accomplishments. However, a 10:00 3k or a 2:10 800 is not in itself the least bit remarkable. Literally hundreds of athletes run these times every year in the university ranks in North America alone. It's only the assumption that doing this at age 14 indicates great future potential that makes these performances worth mentioning; and yet we know this assumption is rarely warranted (not never, but rarely).

As for morphing the discussion, I only raised this point because, yet again, we were being invited to be impressed by the fact that "the midget girls ran as fast as the senior girls at OFSAA". I merely pointed out that this wasn't actually impressive at all, since the midget girls who were doing this 2 years ago have made little or no progress since then, and are now themselves being surpassed by a new group of midgets. Maybe it's because I'm inclined to look at the bigger picture, but I don't find this inspiring at all; as a coach, I find it mildly depressing when I consider it in contrast with how depleted the ranks of senior elites and sub-elites are in this country. I hate seeing the sport in this country turned into another version of soccer -- i.e. a sport done solely by children and students, in which few people seem at all interested in figuring out how to help athletes become the best they can possible be, and compete successfully as adults against the best in the world.

Or, maybe I've just had enough of OFSAA threads!
06/12/2012 11:24:15 PM
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Can't we just look at this as a record......which is what it is.....if all we remember this grade 9 for is her performance in grade 9 and nothing to follow than so be it! She has earned the right to be remembered as the fastest midget. We cant predict the future, sure we can follow patterns and assume she or they will fall into a certain category/path....but we would just be torturing ourselves by doing so. She broke the OFSAA record......lets give her the credit and not place expectations on her for the future!
Can't we just look at this as a record......which is what it is.....if all we remember this grade 9 for is her performance in grade 9 and nothing to follow than so be it! She has earned the right to be remembered as the fastest midget. We cant predict the future, sure we can follow patterns and assume she or they will fall into a certain category/path....but we would just be torturing ourselves by doing so. She broke the OFSAA record......lets give her the credit and not place expectations on her for the future!
06/13/2012 10:57:19 AM
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While it is good to honour a new record holder, the point is that too many people take the new record as a sign of things to come, forgetting even the most recent history. If a kid who sets a midget record never improves for any number of reasons, and is content that on one day he or she was the best ever in Ontario, then good for them. However, I think we all agree that it is highly unlikely that any of these young phenoms wil be content if they end up running slower in grade 12. But I do like to stay positive. No one mentioned Emma Galbraith. She has been good throughout high school but clearly had a big breakthrough this year. There is reason to believe that she can continue to improve. Congrats to her and her coaches.
While it is good to honour a new record holder, the point is that too many people take the new record as a sign of things to come, forgetting even the most recent history. If a kid who sets a midget record never improves for any number of reasons, and is content that on one day he or she was the best ever in Ontario, then good for them.
However, I think we all agree that it is highly unlikely that any of these young phenoms wil be content if they end up running slower in grade 12.
But I do like to stay positive. No one mentioned Emma Galbraith. She has been good throughout high school but clearly had a big breakthrough this year. There is reason to believe that she can continue to improve. Congrats to her and her coaches.

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