Bax fast fin­isher in fi­nal home­town meet

The Prince George Citizen - - Sports - Ted CLARKE Cit­i­zen staff [email protected]­i­t­i­zen.ca

Af­ter just three track meets in the ren­o­vated Ma­sich Place Sta­dium, Jor­dan Bax has run his last home­town race as a com­pet­i­tive high school ath­lete.

Bax, a mid-dis­tance run­ner in his fifth sea­son with the Prince George Track and Field Club, didn’t have much com­pe­ti­tion this past week­end as one of the few se­nior ath­letes reg­is­tered in the two-day Spruce Cap­i­tal meet, which drew just 90 par­tic­i­pants, most in the younger age cat­e­gories.

Even with no­body push­ing him in two of the three run­ning events he en­tered, Bax still man­aged to post a per­sonal best in an event he doesn’t usu­ally race, the 400 me­tres.

“I was su­per-happy to get a PB, 1:00.78, al­most sub-one minute, which is not as fast as some of the guys but for be­ing a dis­tance run­ner I’m pretty happy about that,” said Bax, who is grad­u­at­ing from D.P. Todd Se­condary School this year.

“What’s hard about it is this meet is nor­mally big­ger than Sub Zero but there’s no­body here. It’s a great meet for all the younger kids in ele­men­tary who are just try­ing to get ex­pe­ri­ence. I could have walked in and got gold.”

Bax raced the 1,500m Sat­ur­day with Maxwell Whitehouse, a Grade 10 stu­dent from Cedars Chris­tian and the two were close to each other for two laps but Bax kicked it into high gear in the last lap and beat Whitehouse by 20 sec­onds, win­ning in 4:46.

Bax was the only se­nior in the 800m race Sun­day and fin­ished his two laps of the track in 2:25.

“Be­cause I was the only one in it I didn’t take it that se­ri­ously and I stayed up later (the night be­fore) and hung out with some friends and I knew it was just for fun,” said Bax. “My time wasn’t bad, but I took it easy.

“Nolan McCleary from Van­der­hoof, he’s a year younger than me and he killed it. He ran a 2:07. He gave it all.”

Bax will be in Burn­aby for the Harry Jerome In­ter­na­tional Track Clas­sic June 20, then will head to Kelowna for the Jack Brow In­ter­na­tional meet, June 28-30.

“The Jack Brow is usu­ally a B.C. meet but the Aus­tralians come and they bring a lit­tle zest to it,” said Bax. “It makes it fun to race against peo­ple you nor­mally don’t race against. That’s where I’m look­ing to peak, so I’m look­ing for­ward to it.”

Bax also ex­cels as a trail run­ner and won the cross coun­try run­ning zone cham­pi­onship last fall and placed 54th at provin­cials. He’s also got a bit of triath­lete in him, hav­ing fin­ished sec­ond over­all at the Prince George Iceman mul­ti­sport en­durance race in Fe­bru­ary.

He plans to move to Kam­loops next year to train with for­mer PGTFC high jumper Bazil Spencer, who trains with for­mer Olympic bronze medal­ist shot put­ter Dy­lan Arm­strong. There’s an op­por­tu­nity for Bax to train with the cross coun­try team at Thomp­son Rivers Univer­sity with­out ac­tu­ally en­rolling in the school.

He wants to work full time for a year to save some money for when he even­tu­ally does go back to school.

“Right now I feel I’m not at the great­est point to get any­thing too amaz­ing (for schol­ar­ships) and that’s why I want to take the year off,” said Bax. “If I take the year off and do all the city meets and im­prove my­self dras­ti­cally, that’s when I can get some­thing.”

Also on the hori­zon this sum­mer for Bax is the B.C. Ath­let­ics Jam­boree in Kam­loops, July 5-7. If he does well, he’ll move on to the B.C. Ju­nior De­vel­op­ment cham­pi­onships in South Sur­rey, July 19-21. The ju­nior de­vel­op­ment meet is a qual­i­fier for the Cana­dian Le­gion Youth Track and Field Cham­pi­onships in Syd­ney, N.S., Aug. 9-11.

Sophia Mah­moud, a Grade 10 stu­dent at Duchess Park Se­condary School, wasn’t se­verely tested in her 400m and 200m races at the Spruce Cap­i­tal meet but had per­sonal-best times in both.

“It was a lot bet­ter than I ex­pected, be­cause when we first got here it was dead, no one was here,” said Mah­moud.

“I was run­ning with Jor­dan in my 400 and got a PB, 1:04.52, and that was my favourite race of the whole meet. It was so much fun. I took a full sec­ond off my time and I was re­ally sur­prised I PB’d.”

Mah­moud ran her best-ever 200 in 27.95, one-hun­dredth of a sec­ond slower than Taigen Wheele of D.P. Todd, a Grade 11 stu­dent.

“I ran 400 hur­dles and that was far from my PB, but that was hard be­cause I was run­ning by my­self,” said Mah­moud.

“It was just me so I just fo­cused on form and not so much speed, which made it more tech­ni­cal. It’s fun rac­ing with all the lit­tle kids cheer­ing you on, be­cause we coach them and they all know who you are.”

Mah­moud is en­tered in all three events at the Jack Brow, her sea­son-end­ing meet. She’ll con­tinue to train with the club un­til mid-July. She and her dad are work­ing on an off-sea­son train­ing pro­gram that will in­clude weight train­ing, swim­ming and cross-coun­try ski­ing.

CIT­I­ZEN PHOTO BY JAMES DOYLE

Noah Glad­dish clears the bar while com­pet­ing in the high jump on Sun­day morn­ing at Ma­sich Place Sta­dium dur­ing the Spruce Cap­i­tal Track and Field Meet.

CIT­I­ZEN PHOTO BY JAMES DOYLE

Jor­dan Bax set a pair of per­sonal best per­for­mances at Ma­sich Place Sta­dium dur­ing the Spruce Cap­i­tal Track and Field Meet.

CIT­I­ZEN PHO­TOS BY JAMES DOYLE

FAR LEFT: Ava Cundy throws a javelin on Sun­day morn­ing at Ma­sich Place Sta­dium. LEFT: Nolan McCleary races around the track at Ma­sich Place Sta­dium on Sun­day. BOT­TOM LEFT: Mitchell Bax­ter pre­pares to throw a shot­put on Sun­day morn­ing at Ma­sich Place Sta­dium. BOT­TOM RIGHT: Mor­gan Boileau flies through the air at the long jump pits on Sun­day.

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