CAPITAL SPORTS HUB
“It was an excellent experience and gave me a little encouragement being a district champion,” said Mackay, who then proceeded to win four straight matches for the District 16 women’s singles title and qualify for the two-day Ontario championship in Kitchener.
But it looked like her provincial championship would end after the first day as Mackay struggled with her shots. She finished her roundrobin matches at 1-2, leaving her in a three-way tie for second and a berth in Sunday’s quarterfinals.
But Mackay fought her way to the quarterfinals, defeating Judith Torrell of Belleville 7-4 and Betty Robillard of Midland 7-4 in a pair of tiebreaker matches.
“It was a very long day,” Mackay said about her five-match, 11-hour Saturday session. “There was bad weather with thunderstorms. It (tiebreakers) didn’t look promising ... but I managed to do just enough to get to the knockout round.
“The tiebreakers were a second chance and my game improved. But it was quite late and we were all feeling tired. It was a mental battle and stamina thing.”
On Sunday, a well-rested Mackay saw her game fall into proper alignment. Focused and composed, Mackay handled all challenges to defeat JoAnne Bugler of Parks/ St. Mary’s in the quarterfinals, Gloria Cheung of Agincourt in the semifinals and Heather Comba of Milton in the final for her historic Ontario singles title.
“I felt getting to the final a weight had been lifted off me,” she added. “(But) I had gone way beyond anything I had set for myself.”
Mackay committed to lawn bowls this season and her investment paid off.
“It was the focus. I really wanted to win. I put in a lot of hours of practice with Blaine. He helped boost my confidence,” she said, explaining her provincial title.
After many years, Mackay has found her road to athletic fulfilment.
“To begin, I liked the recreation aspect. Now, I enjoy the competitive side and the challenge of ladies’ singles. It’s not difficult to learn, but it takes practice and to be accurate it takes a while to be perfect. The personal challenge is the improve.”
Osgoode’s Derek Gee was the big wheel at the Canadian senior track cycling championships, winning four national titles on his home velodrome in Milton, Ont. Committed to the national track sprint program through 2020, the Team Race Clean rider placed first in the men’s omnium, the individual pursuit, the team pursuit with Bailey Simpson, Evan Burtnik and Adam Jamieson, and the Madison with Burtnik. Kinsley Gibson of Ottawabased The Cyclery-4iiii beat clubmate Laurie Jussaume to win the women’s individual pursuit. They joined forces to place third in the Madison and then linked with Ariane Bonhomme and Sara Giovannetti for second in the team pursuit. Ottawa’s Annie Foreman-Mackey of Sho-Air Twenty20 was second in the women’s Madison with Laura Brown and third in the omnium and individual pursuit.
Eastern Ontario and Western Quebec placed 16 athletes on the Canadian team for the recent Invictus Games in Toronto and five returned home with medals. Natacha Dupuis of Gatineau led the parade with gold in the women’s IT6/IT7 100, 200 and 400 metres in athletics, and silver in the IR6 one-minute indoor rowing sprint. Indoor rower Mike Trauner of Pembroke pulled his way to golds in the men’s IR1 four-minute endurance and one-minute sprint. Caroline Cauvin of Ottawa also excelled in indoor rowing with bronze-medal showings in the women’s IR5 four-minute endurance and one-minute sprint. Winning single medals were Suzanne Barrette of Ottawa, bronze, archery, novice team recurve, and Daniel Graham of Deep River, bronze, men’s golf.
Ottawa Valley golf pro Harry Hereford of Arnprior, who helped create the PGA of Canada Ottawa Zone on Jan. 1, 1976, died on Sept. 19 after a 12-year battle with cancer. He was 69. For 26 years (1991-2017), Hereford was the zone’s executive director for 170 golf pros and served as president in 1983-84. He took his job seriously and ruled by the book to maintain the integrity of the job. On Aug. 14, the Ottawa Zone re-named its Teacher of the Year Award after Hereford, a passionate instructor who twice won that honour, and also made a donation in his name to the Michelle Mackay of the Highland Park Lawn Bowling Club recently became the first athlete from District 16 (Ottawa) to win the Ontario Lawn Bowls Association women’s singles championship. Royal Canadian Legion Branch 174 in Arnprior, where the 1976 zone champion was a life member and current president. Carp triathlete Joanna Brown placed fifth at the Grand Final (world championships) in Rotterdam. Here are some of her thoughts she posted on Instagram a week before she ended her best-ever season with a World Cup silvermedal effort in Huelva, Spain: “To finish off the season ranked seventh in the World Triathlon Series fills me with a sense of pride and of elation, but more than anything I am overwhelmed with gratitude for the people that believe in me and with respect for the women that I race beside. I’m looking forward to failing, to learning, to pushing the limits, and to setting new ones. Passion brings incredible strength and motivation. Passion brings heartbreak and struggle. The pursuit is never easy, but it’s also never over.”
Nepean Ottawa Diving Club’s Henry McKay and Kate Miller had matching double-medal efforts for Canada at the Pan American junior championships in Victoria. Miller took gold on the girls’ B (12-13) platform and silver on one-metre. McKay won gold on men’s A (16-18) synchro three-metre with Victor Povzner of Markham, Ont., bronze on platform and was fourth on one-metre.
Rowing Canada only had eight available rowers this season for the women’s eight plus coxswain, but eight was enough to win the silver medal at the world rowing championships in Sarasota, Florida. Ottawa Rowing Club’s Christine Roper sat in Seat 5 and won her fifth career world senior championship medal ... Former Kanata player Robin Clarke of Toronto and Victoria’s Thomas Brinkman scored three straight upset victories as an unseeded team before falling 15-10, 15-10, 3-15, 7-15, 15-14 in the final of the Stifel world hardball doubles squash championship in St. Louis ... Michael Woods of Ottawa and the Cannondale-Drapac Pro Cycling Team ranked eighth on the WorldTour list for most days racing at 82, and 10th for the most competitive kilometres travelled at 12,818.2.