Pelly Crossing shooter Danielle Marcotte was all aces at the Canadian National Pistol Championships in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, this weekend.
She surprised the field with an amazing performance, which earned her the Junior National champion title.
In the finals, the 14-year-old shot 97.1 per cent, the highest score of the entire event. She beat out all junior shooters, in both the under-16 and under-20 categories.
Marcotte’s score was even higher than Canada’s Pan-Am Games gold medalist Avianna Chao, who competed in the senior category.
“It’s awesome, we never expected it,” said coach Ken Speiss, who accompanied Marcotte and teammate Kara Lepine to the meet. Speiss said he’s approaching the Canadian national team on behalf of Marcotte, now that she’s earned her spot as the top young shooter in Canada.
“Right now I’ve asked Danielle to take some time off,” said Speiss. “We’ve been working pretty hard for a long time now.”
Lepine took silver in the under-16 10-metre air pistol category. Both Marcotte and Lepine are veterans of the Canada Winter Games team, and the only Yukon junior shooters to compete at Prince Albert.
James makes the
cut at worlds
Yukon Orienteering Association member Pam James qualified for the middle distance final at the World Orienteering Championships in Kiev, Ukraine, on Monday.
James finished 14th in her heat with the top 15 from each of three heats going through to the final.
James’ experience (this is her 10th time at World Championships) was invaluable. Many high-ranked runners had trouble and made mistakes while she kept her cool in the tricky terrain.
Conditions were even more difficult because of areas with thick bushes and lots of leaves that made the terrain and the controls very difficult to see.
James said she was very happy to meet her major goal of the season by qualifying for the final.
“I’m so excited I’m tingling all over … but maybe that is from the stinging nettles,” she said with a smile.
Another YOA member, Brent Langbakk, is also in the Ukraine representing Canada. Langbakk ran the sprint on Saturday and the long-course on Sunday.
While the sprint race had too many errors, he was quite pleased with his performance in the long run. In a very tight men’s heat he was only two minutes outside of qualifying for the 15th and final spot in the final, finishing 22nd. A three-minute error on one of the controls was the crucial factor.
“It’s a little bit tough knowing that I could have made it through without the mistake but at the same time it’s good to know that I have the capacity to be there. Overall, it’s the closest I have been to qualifying and to the winning time in a heat, so I am satisfied.”
The action continues this week. James, the only Canadian to qualify for a final, will compete on Wednesday in the middle distance final.
The relay events are being held on Saturday, both James and Langbakk will be running on Canada’s three-person women’s and men’s teams.
Intersport Fun Run
A record 71 runners and walkers, including an entire female soccer team, participated in the Intersport five-kilometre run and walk last week.
With Rodney Hulstein, a member of Yukon’s running glitterati, doing a slower tempo run (20:15), the field was wide open for other contenders to strive for a podium finish.
The speedy Stephen Dynes was first across the line (18:31). He was closely pursued by the powerful multi-sport athlete Sam Lindsay, who finished just five seconds later (18:36).
Ultra marathoner Keith Thaxter, who is Yukon’s most accomplished runner this year, finished in third position (19:33).
With almost 40 female runners competing, Melissa O’Brien was the fastest female runner for the second time this season posting a time (20:13) that was oh-so-close to the much-revered 20-minute barrier.
O’Brien had to thrust herself across the finish line because she was aggressively pursued by 16-year-old Brittany Smith who crossed the finish line just two seconds after O’Brien (20:15).
This was a personal best for Smith who just returned from competing at the Western Canada Summer Games in Alberta.
Josianne Markley, last week’s first-place female runner, finished third in a time of 21:39. When Sue Bogle, the queen of this year’s Intersport, returns later this month, she’ll have O’Brien, Smith and Markley to contend with.
On the walking side, Rick Griffiths continued to dominate the men’s category. He finished first amongst the men in 35:14. But Griffiths could not catch the enthusiastic Ruth Hall. She finished 20 seconds ahead of Griffiths in 34:54 and was the fastest walker of the evening.
August 23 (Thursday) Sportslife Trail Run, hosted by BARA
Start time 6:30 p.m., Crestview trailhead, call Nancy Thomson 333-0983.
August 26 (Sunday) Chocolate Claim 10-Miler Road Race, hosted by Athletics Yukon
Whitehorse: Rotary Park, registration 9:30 a.m., start time 10 a.m.
Sportslife Trail Run
Last week’s Sportslife Thursday trail run took place on the Magnusson ski trails on Grey Mountain Road. Sixteen people took to the soft rolling trails on a beautiful warm Yukon evening. The course was rated easy and covered 8.3 kilometres
First for the male runners was Keith Thaxter in a time of 37:30, followed by Tom Ullyett in 39:52. For the ladies, Laura Vanderkley led the way in 45:32, followed by Megan Phillips in a time of 49:31. For more information on the Sportslife runs check on the web at www.yukonmaraton.com.
Male (8.3 kilometres)
1st Keith Thaxter, 37:30
2nd Tom Ullyett, 39:52
3rd Ray Tucker, 45:32
4th Bob Nishikawa, 45:33
5th Brian Mottus, 49:58
6th Darren Stoddart, 52:59
7th Mark Newman, 54:33
Female (8.3 kilometres)
1st Laura Vanderkley, 45:32
2nd Megan Phillips, 49:31
3rd Jennifer Grantham, 52:54
4th Jennifer Nagel, 54:40
5th Sue Mueller, 56:25
6th Audrey Meyer, 59:31
7th Tracey Taylor, 59:48
8th Catherine McCormick, 60:20
9th Christine Paradis, 60:43