STELLARTON – Pictou County Athletics is hosting the track and field provincials this weekend at the Pioneer Coal track in Stellarton.
Start time is 1 p.m. on Saturday and goes to 7 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. An expected 300-400 athletes will be participating in the meet and PCA will be gunning to repeat as Club Champions again this year.
This past week, three PCA competitors took part in the U20 and Senior (ages 21 to 35) Canadian track and field championships in Ottawa.
Heath Miller of Merigomish, Lauren Quann from Pictou and Pictou’s Eric Hughes each had personal best performances and very good placements in the competition.
• Heath Miller: U20 javelin – (bronze with a throw of 43.60m).
• Lauren Quann: Senior javelin – (6th place finish with a throw of 42.52m).
• Eric Hughes: U20 110m Hurdles – (4th place finish with a time of 14.94 seconds).
Miller, 17, said she enjoyed going up against all the high-level athletes on the national stage.
“It was really neat, throwing against all the other girls from the other provinces,” she said, adding that it’s important to not be intimidated by the other athletes.
“You just have to stay positive, stay confident – just try your best to stay in a good mindset.”
Her javelin toss of 43.60m at nationals eclipsed her personal best effort by two metres.
“It felt good, to PB by two metres,” said Miller, who will compete on her home track this weekend.
“I’m psyched for it, I’m hoping for another big throw. It’d be nice.”
She will also compete in shot put, discus and the hammer toss at provincials.
Quann wasn’t sure if she’ll take part in provincials, but was glad for the experience in Ottawa.
“Because of my birthday, I’m usually up an age group, so it was good to be able to compete against people who are much older than me,” she said.
“I got to compete against Liz Gleadle, who is an Olympian, so that was really, really cool.”
Gleadle competed for Canada at the 2012 Olympics in London.
Last winter, the 19-year-old Quann took a medical leave from the University of New Hampshire, where she was in her first year after getting a scholarship to compete in the heptathlon.
“I took a medical leave for her second semester, but I’m going back in the fall,” she said.
“Looking back, I had a lot of fun and the training was really great and I love all my coaches – all the people down there are amazing.”