Yukon snowshoers are stomping snow and competitors at the Arctic Winter Games.
After just two days of racing the team has accumulated a total of 12 medals including four gold.
Yukon won eight ulu medals from the combined short distance races and relays on Wednesday.
One gold was a long time in the making. Yukon’s Aidan Bradley claimed first in the short distance combined event for junior male. Bradley placed first in the 100- and 400-metre distances and second in the 1,500 for the overall gold.
“I feel pretty good about them, they were a lot of fun,” said Bradley.
In the 400-metre, “at the 200 mark I knew I could do it, get first place.”
The gold is Bradley’s first in an individual event in three Arctic Games. He was on a gold-winning relay team at the 2010 Games in Grande Prairie, Alta.
His gold meant the end of a win-streak spanning three Arctic Games.
Yukon teammate Kieran Halliday took silver in the junior male event. Before Wednesday Halliday had won eight straight gold medals at the Arctic Games since 2010, including a five-kilometre cross-country race on Monday.
“I was really going for it today, but if you look at the results, Aidan and I were in different heats and were within a second in two of the races, which is pretty amazing,” said Halliday. “If there’s someone I’m going to lose to, I’m glad it was Aidan. He trained really hard all season and I think he really deserved it.”
Halliday ran to gold in the junior male five-kilometre cross-country race to start the Games on Monday.
After placing fourth in a 2.5-kilometre race on Monday, Yukon’s Alice Frost-Hanberg found redemption with gold on Wednesday.
Frost-Hanberg placed first in the 100-, second in the 400- and second in the 800-metre for first in the juvenile combined event.
The Yukon team picked up a second silver on Wednesday. Sara Burke-Forsyth took second in the junior female event for her 10th career ulu over three Arctic Games, including a bronze from Monday.
She placed just 0.9 seconds ahead of teammate Kate Londero, who snatched the bronze.
Yukon’s Angus Clarke was fastest in the 100-metre event, came third in 400-metre and sixth in the 1,500-metre, on his way to bronze in the juvenile male division in the combined event on Wednesday.
“I was sure I’d get a medal. I was hoping for a different colour, but it’s good,” said Clarke.
The Yukon team also claimed medals in the mixed relay events on Wednesday.
Londero, Burke-Forsyth, Bradley and Halliday teamed up for gold in the 4×400-metre junior event.
Frost-Handberg, Clarke and teammates Ava Cairns-Locke and Darby McIntyre took bronze in the juvenile relay.
“I think this year we have a really good team and we put a lot of effort into practice,” said Clarke. “(Coach Don White) has really pushed us in practice.”
Cairns-Locke and McIntyre both won bronzes in the juvenile cross-country races on Monday.
Snowshoe will wrap up with the long-distance races on Friday.
“I’m really looking forward to Friday,” said Halliday. “I was the five (kilometre race), so I’m looking forward to stretching it out a bit. I’m hoping to get one more.”
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