The Ottawa Lions were well represented among the winner’s category at the 9th Annual Athletics Ontario and Ontario Masters Athletics Awards Gala which took place last Saturday in Richmond Hill. In total, Lions athletes took home six awards with Wendy Alexis being honoured as the top female athlete in the masters sprints/hurdles category as well as winning the Ontario Masters Athletics Female Athlete of the Year.
Wendy was acknowledged for her tremendous season on the track which saw her win double sprint gold in the women’s 60 category at the Canadian Championships where she bested her long time rival, Karal Del Grande. Alexis was also the Ontario champion over 200m, but was edged out for gold in the 100m by Del Grande at the provincial championships.
There were no surprises in the senior women’s distance category as Melissa Bishop took home the award for the second year in a row after her fourth place finish at the Olympic Games and a new Canadian Record of 1:57.02 for 800m.
Also in the distance category, Shona McCulloch was recognized for her spectacular season which included two Canadian records. McCulloch first broke the Canadian junior indoor 5000m record last winter with a run of 16 minutes 31.22 seconds in New York City. Then this spring she broke former training partner Claire Smith’s national junior 3000m record. Shona would lower it again at the World Junior Championships with a run of 9:16..93 to finish 11th.
Tim Nedow was named Ontario’s top senior male thrower for the fifth year in a row following a season that saw him break the 21m barrier for the first time ever. Nedow was also the inaugural winner the shot put of the IAAF Indoor World Tour. The Brockville native was also 7th at the World Indoor Championships and 16th at the Olympic Games.
Leslie Estwick was honoured as the top female athlete in the masters jumps category in her first season of masters competition after more than a decade off. Estwick was a provincial and national champion in the women’s 55 and over high jump. After equaling the previous Canadian record at provincials, Leslie added two more centimetres to it at nationals.