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From left, Dan Brown, Rachelle McDonald, Alex Peabody, Jacob Hayes, Matt McNeil, Katie Robinson, Nick MacMackin, Cameron McLennan, Saint John athletes who will be part of Team NB at the Canada Games. Photo: Topher Seguin/Telegraph-Journal






Saint John track and field team has lofty goals

The Saint John Track Club will be well represented at next month’s Canada Summer Games.

Eleven of the club’s athletes are part of the the 52 Team NB athletics members set to make the trip to Sherbrooke Que., after qualifying for the national competition at the Canada Games Trials held at UNBSJ last weekend.

“Our 2013 team will be one of the strongest we ever send to Canada Games,‘’ said Gabriel LeBlanc, Technical Director of Athletics New Brunswick.

Among the SJTC representatives will be Grace Annear, a Hampton native and University of Victoria Vikes runner.

Annear, a Canadian Interuniversity Sport all-Canadian, took first in the 400m at the trials with a time of 56.90, qualifying for the 4x400 relay at the Canada Games.

The upcoming trip to Sherbrooke will mark the second time Annear has competed at the national event, having ran at the 2009 PEI Games when she was 16.

“My ultimate goal is to get a medal at these championships,” said the 20-year-old, whose main focus is the 800m event. “My whole year has been leading up to this point. With all the pushing, and all these improvements I’ve made, I think I’ve made it to the point where I can compete in this event.”

Annear’s personal best in the 800m is a 2:07:12, which she attained at the Alileen Meagher International race in Halifax in early June.

A calf injury hampered her chances at the recent Canadian Track and Field Championships in Moncton, where she finished 19th with a 2:16:31, well back of the leaders.

The third-year university student said that disappointment served as a big wake-up call.

“It made me hungry to compete, to get back and do more,” said Annear, who finished 14th in the 400m in her last Canada Games appearance. “It was a reality check, because when that stuff happens, it means something is wrong. Maybe I wasn’t hydrated, maybe I didn’t stretch properly. It’s a good learning experience because it makes you take a step back and focus on what you’re doing, and making sure you’re doing it right.”

Fellow Saint John members joining Annear on the women’s side will be Rachelle McDonald (relays) and Katie Robinson (2000m).

On the men’s side, javelin thrower Caleb Jones will be a front runner for a medal at the Games.

Jones, 22, recently earned a bronze medal at the 2013 Canadian Track and Field Championships in Moncton.

Fellow Saint John thrower Mitch Quigg will also compete in the javelin.

Matt McNeil will run the 1500m and the 5000m, while recent Saint John High School graduate Nick McMackin, who ran for the provincial champion Saint John High Greyhounds in the high school season, has qualified for the 800m and 1,500m events.

Hampton’s Daniel Brown, meanwhile, will compete in the relay event, as will Jacob Hayes of Quispamsis, and Alexander Peabody of Saint John.

Cameron McLennan will compete in the discus throw, rounding out the SJTC participation at the Games, which begin Aug. 2.

Annear said there’s just something special about the Port City track club.

“It’s really an incredible group of people,” she said. “Everyone works so hard. The coaches put a lot of time into the athletes, and the athletes feel it, and it shows up in the results.”

New Brunswick won no athletics medals at the last summer games.





Team New Brunswick – Athletics

Women’s Team

Grace Annear, Hampton, 800-metre, relays

Victoria Baba, Lincoln, 100-metre

Jennifer Bell, Chaplin Island, shot put

Zoe Berry, Estes’s Bridge, javelin

Chrystal Bradley, Moncton, 100-metre, 200-metre (Special O)

Bridget Brennan, Beechwood, long jump, 400-metre, relays

Livia Clarke, Fredericton, relays

Hailee Cook, Miramichi, high jump

Veronica Coombes, Shediac Cape, 200-metre, 400-metre, 1500-metre (para)

Stephanie Doiron, Colette, heptathlon

Lindsay Gauvin, Big River, javelin

Amy Lynn Grant, Beresford, 100-metre, 200-metre, relays

Genevieve Lalonde, Moncton, 2000-metre steeplechase, 1500-metre

Monika LeBlanc, Dieppe, long jump, triple jump

Veronique LeBlanc, Memramcook, 200-metre (Special O)

Sydney MacDonald, Miramichi, heptathlon

Sarah MacPherson, Keswick Ridge, 1500-metre, 5000-metre

Naomie Maltais, Val d’Amour, discus throw, hammer throw

Lynette Manuel, Oromocto, 5000-metre

Rachelle McDonald, Saint John, relays

Tess McDonald, Fredericton, TJ

Shawna McKay, Moncton, 100-metre, 200-metre, relays

Sarah Myatt, Fredericton, 400-metre, 800-metre, relays

Christel Robichaud, Moncton, shot put, discus (Para)

Katie Robinson, Saint John, 2000-metre, steeplechase

Men’s team

Daniel Brown, Hampton, relays

James Brace, Intervale, 200-metre, 400-metre, 1500m (para)

Ryan Cassidy, Grand Digue, 3000-metre steeplechase, 5000-metre

Brandon Cleghorn, Salsbury, long jump

Alexandre Coholan, Moncton, 400-metre, 400-metre hurdles, relays

Pascal Desjardins, Petit-Rocher, long jump

Rilind Dragoshi, Moncton, shot put, discus (para)

Adam Gaudes, Fredericton, 800-metre

Jonathan Gionet, Bathurst, shot put

Jacob Hayes, Quispamsis, relays

Richard Ivey, Maxwell, 100m, relays

Jordan Johnson, Cantabury, high jump

Caleb Jones, Saint John, javelin

David Kerr, Fredericton, shot put

Aaron LeBlanc, Memramcook, hammer throw

Brandon LeBlanc, Riverview, 400-metre hurdle

Jean Paul Leger, Edmunston, 100-metre, 2000-metre (Special O)

Nick MacMackin, Quispamsis, 800-metre, 1500-metre

Cameron McLennan, Rothesay, discus

Matthew McNeil, Saint John, 1500-metre, 5000-metre

Alex Peabody, Saint John, relays

John Oakley, Elgin, 100-metre, 200-metre (Special O)

Mitch Quigg, Saint John, javelin

Jeffrey Retallick, Fredericton, 400-metre, 200-metre

Chris Robertson, Moncton, discus

Lee Wesselius, River Glade, 3000-metre steeplechase

Alexander Williston, Bay de Vin,100-metre, 200-metre, relays





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