Whitehorse’s Jessica Frotten has added to her Dogwood gold reserves.
The 29-year-old para wheelchair racer won four gold medals at the Dogwood Track and Field Meet — the scene of her very first outdoor meet in 2013 — at the University of Victoria on May 13.
Frotten has now won 18 gold medals at the event with four last year, and five in 2015 and 2013.
“It was totally different because Dogwood is usually a pretty big meet, but this year because of some scheduling problems it turned out they double booked the track,” said Frotten. “They moved the rest of the events to July, but that didn’t work for the para athletes because our window to make standards ends on June 6. So B.C. Wheelchair Sports worked some magic and got a one-day sanctioned meet together for the para athletes. So it was pretty quiet on the track.
“It’s a lot of races for one day.”
Frotten was alone in the T53 division but laid down the fastest times on the day — including against three male racers — in all her events except the 100-metre.
She shaved more than a second off her previous best 200-metre with a time of 31.93, which is under a second from the Canadian record.
“I’m pretty happy about that new personal best in the 200,” said Frotten. “I feel like I can shave off some time in those distance ones.”
Frotten, who races for the Saskatoon Cyclones Racing Club, finished the 400-metre in 1:02.02, 800-metre in 2:09.55, and the 100-metre in 19.16 in the preliminary and 18.15 in the final.
“My other times weren’t super awesome, but technically they were pretty good,” said Frotten. “I’m happy with it. I’m feeling pretty good going into Switzerland now.”
Frotten will leave for three meets in Switzerland at the end of the week. She’ll race at the Daniela Jutzeler Memorial Meet and the Swiss Nationals, both in Arbon, before hitting the track for an IPC Grand Prix in Nottwil.
Though track racing is her bread and butter, Frotten won the women’s division in record time at the 33rd annual Vancouver Sun Run in B.C. at the end of April.
She set the women’s wheelchair record with a time of 31 minutes and 13 seconds.
Frotten won four medals at the Canadian Track and Field Championships last year in Edmonton. She won two medals for Canada in track racing at the 2015 Parapan Am Games in Toronto and made two finals at the 2015 IPC Athletics World Championships in Qatar.
Though this past weekend’s Dogwood was much smaller than usual, Frotten still had a sizeable cheering section.
“My dad usually comes out for this one and it’s so good to have him there, and the rest of my friends and family come out to cheer me on,” said Frotten.
Contact Tom Patrick at firstname.lastname@example.org