There are some high hopes at Olds High School for a great track and field season from the school's athletes.
There are about 30 senior track and field athletes and 15 athletes in the junior ranks, said Adam Hogarth, the head coach of the school's track team. The athletes have been practising for the beginning of the season, which gets underway May 15 with the senior Mountain View County meet in Didsbury. That will be followed by the junior MVC meet in Didsbury on May 22. May 28 is the senior zone meet, followed by the junior zones on June 5. Both of the zone meets are in Calgary. The provincial meet for the senior athletes will also be in Calgary on June 7 and 8.
“We have a strong bunch of female pole vaulters again this year,” Hogarth said, noting that Alex Groves and Shaelyn Moritz have been working hard on improving over last year's medals at the provincial meet. Groves won a silver medal while Moritz won a bronze last year. Groves is in Grade 12 while Moritz is in Grade 11.
Carson Jorgensen, who has been on the track team since Grade 8, will be trying to better last year's results at the provincial meet. He's now in Grade 12 and has gone to the provincial meet for the past two years, competing in the 800-metre event two years ago and the 1,500-metre and 3,000-metre last year.
Kris Wederburn, a Grade 12 international student from England, is looking to do well in hurdles and the 200-metre and 400-metre run. Brodie Dirk, a sprinter in Grade 10, has won the 100-metre at the junior zone meet the past three years in a row.
The four-by-100-metre Grade 10 boys relay team is also a contender to make it to the provincial meet. They have been working with Tanya Clattenberg, a local resident who formerly sprinted at the University of Lethbridge.
“I think we have a good quality team. There's still a bunch of athletes that could easily jump in there and do well. We got some very talented Grade 10 girls and Grade 10 boys. There's a lot of quality in all the levels … it's just a matter of who's got the intensity and the fire to go on the day of,” Hogarth said.
Other community coaches include Dana Gans who is working with the pole vaulting team, while John Palardy is working with Wederburn on the hurdles.