The first big weekend of the summer track season went off with a bang for Ottawa Lions’ athletes as a sprinter Farah Jacques re-wrote the record book with a stunning performance at the Florida Relays in Gainesville.
Racing over 200m, Jacques produced a new lifetime best and club record time of 23.21 seconds to finish 9th in a field that included Olympic gold medalists Veronica Campbell-Brown and Francena McCorory. The time eclipses the old club mark of 23.24 set by Esther Akinsulie back in 2010 and is just 0.01 seconds off the Rio Olympic standard.
However, the 200m was not the only event which brought Jacques success over the weekend. Running as a member of the Canadian relay squad, Jacques and her Canadian teammates second in the 4x400m relay with a time of 3 minutes 30.92 seconds. The mark is currently the seventh fastest in the world in 2016.
Hurdler Sekou Kaba also kicked off his road to Rio in Gainesville with a speedy 13.71 second clocking. While one his fastest career openers, the wind was just over the allowable limit at 2.3 m/s.
In California, Adam Palamar proved he’s more than just a 1500m runner, turning in an excellent 5000m performance at the Stanford Invitational. A senior at Syracuse University, Adam finished 11th overall in 13 minutes 59.03 seconds. The performance vaults him to seven in club history. Also competing at Stanford, Samantha Murphy was sixth in the 800m in 2:05.05. Matt Bedard was 15th in the 400m hurdles in 54.54.
In nearby San Francisco, Erinn Stenman-Fahey dropped a nearly 11 second personal best in the 1500m, as she finished 14th in 4:33.44. Down the coast in Santa Barbara, club record holder Patrick Arbour kicked off his season with a second place finish in the Sam Adams Invitational decathlon. Arbour put up a score of 7384 points over the two day event.