The 44th Legion National Youth Track and Field Championships, hosted by Legion Branch 010 Colonel John S Bourque, took place from August 4 to 7 in Sherbrooke, Quebec. Almost 700 athletes from across the country competed, and although the summer heat was extreme, they had a fantastic time and even broke a few records.
The Legion Nationals always incorporates a theme or anniversary of Remembrance in the championships. This year, we commemorated the 80th anniversary of the Battle of Dieppe.
“Operation Jubilee” was the Canadian Army’s first involvement in the fight against Hitler's Nazi-Occupied Europe. The raid resulted in more than 900 Canadian soldiers killed, and thousands wounded or taken prisoner.
“This reality is an undercurrent of this year's Legion Nationals – and a reminder of the great opportunities that the sacrifices at Dieppe brought us all,” says Bruce Julian, Dominion President.
The medals that were won by the athletes were designed to reflect this anniversary theme.
The championships officially began after our traditional Opening Ceremony.
The athletes marched onto the track lead by Michel Rodrigue, sergeant-at-arms of the Colour Party. We then performed the Opening Ritual for the meet, which included the playing of the last post, two minutes of silence, the playing of the lament, the rouse, and the recital of the Act of Remembrance.
The Lieutenant Governor of Quebec, the Honourable Michel Doyon, was the guest of honour. He laid the wreath and officially opened the games.
Record Breakers and Game Highlights
New records were set every day of the competition.
- Maella Hodgson from BC/Yukon broke a Legion Nationals record in the U18 Women 1500m with a time of 4:23.
- Aidan Turner from BC/Yukon broke a Legion Nationals record in the U18 Men 100m, Decathlon at 11.02 seconds.
- Aidan Turner again broke a Legion Nationals record in the U18 Men Long Jump, Decathlon with a jump of 7.04m.
- Julia Tunks from London, Ontario broke a Legion Nationals record in the U18 Women Discus with a throw of 49.82m.
Check out their photos on Instagram.
- Travis Harfield from Victoria, BC broke a Legion Nationals record in the U16 Men Javelin with a throw of 67.72m.
- Josh Tam from Saskatchewan broke a Legion Nationals record in the U18 Men Pole Vault, Decathlon with a height of 4.20m..
- Aidan Turner broke another record in the U18 Men Pole Vault, Decathlon with a height of 4.2m and Discus, Decathlon, with a throw of 41.34m .
- Lambert Fournier from Québec broke a Legion Nationals record in the U18 Men 110m Hurdles, Decathlon with a time of 14.46 seconds.
- Samuel Jeffrey from Niagara broke a Legion Nationals record in the U18 Men Decathlon with 6519 points.
Check out their photos on Instagram.
- Philippe Glaude from Québec broke a Legion Nationals record in the U16 Men Shotput, Pentathlon with a throw of 13.71m.
See his photo on Instagram.
Legion athletes also got to explore Parc de la Gorge and experience the magic of Foresta Lumina on the Monday evening following the Championships. It was a huge success among the athletes!
Closing Banquet and Top Athletes
Legion athletes dressed up and attended the Closing Banquet that officially closed the 44th Legion National Youth Track and Field Championships.
Top athletes from each Provincial Command were announced and the two top Legion provincial athletes from the entire championships were awarded.
The Jack Stenhouse Award for the top male athlete went to Jake McEachern from AB/NWT Command. Jake won gold in both the U18 Men’s Shot Put and Discus.
The LeRoy Washburn Award for the top female athlete went to Sofia Agudelo from Québec Command. Sofia won gold in the U16 Female 80m Hurdles, 200m Hurldes and the 4 x 100m Relay.
Finally, the President’s Award, which recognizes an individual who's demonstrated exceptional dedication, support and service to the Legion Nationals program, was awarded to Kelly Smith from PIB.
Overall, the 44th Legion National Track and Field Championships were a big success! We look forward to next year's competition back in Sherbrooke, Québec.
More photos will be available here soon!
About the Legion Nationals
The Royal Canadian Legion, through the efforts of thousands of Legion volunteers, has been organizing and coordinating the National Youth Track and Field Championships for 43 years in support of Canadian youth and our communities.
This national championship, funded by the Legion and generous support from our partners, gives young Canadians 17 and under a chance to compete against the best, develop confidence and better understand the diversity of other sports-minded youth across Canada.
Find out more at www.legionnationals.ca
Public Relations & Media: PublicRelations@Legion.ca – 343-540-7604