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Jack Amos winning the senior boys race. Photo credit: Christopher Kelsall

Oak Bay High School did it again. They won two of four races at the 2018 Vancouver Island Cross Country Championships including both senior races.

Jack Amos won the senior boys race at Beaver Lake on Wednesday afternoon, finishing unchallenged over the 6.7-kilometre course. He crossed the line in the time of 21-minutes and 25 seconds, which was 21 seconds in front of Fraser Van Allen from Dover Bay High School in Nanaimo. Antoine Minfray finished third. He attends Carihi in Campbell River.

“I took it easy for the first two laps, working with my teammate Joe Robertson, who finished fourth, then I went for it during the third and final lap,” said Amos. “I felt pretty good out there and just wanted to get the win for Oak Bay.”

Amos, from Dawson City is not able to represent Team BC, so he will be missing the provincial club championships on Saturday in Abbotsford, but will race the provincial high school championships in Nanaimo in November.

Amos moved to Victoria to train with two-time Olympian Bruce Deacon and attend the powerful Oak Bay High School.

“We expect to take the team win at provincials,” said Amos.

Elise Coates winning senior girls race Island Cross Country Champs. Photo credit: Christopher Kelsall

Van Allen is just in Grade 11. Unusual for Dover Bay, they did not field a full senior boys team, so he was racing for individual placement only.

Top-three team scores:

Oak Bay High School -30
Carihi – 71
Mt. Doug – 75

In the senior girls race Elise Coates led the entire way and like Amos, finished well ahead over the same 6.7K, three-lap course. The Wellington High School athlete crossed the line in the time of 25:24. She finished 23 seconds in front of Alisa Lyesina from Oak Bay. The third-place finisher was Delaney Chan of Oak Bay finishing in 26:36.

“I felt comfortable out there,” said Coates. “I like the course and we had a chance to walk it beforehand. My main goal was to run it comfortable to feel out the course for the first two laps and go for it in the end.”

Coates will be racing in the upcoming club and high school provincials.

Liam Kirkendale of Claremont wins, here he is pictured at the start in second. Photo credit: Christopher Kelsall

“I have two more races coming up soon, so I ran just fast enough to help the team win today.” Said Lyesina.

Asked if the Oak Bay student felt that she has home course advantage at Beaver Lake she said, “yes, we train here often and I raced out here last week. So yeah I know it well, so I am pretty familiar with it.”

She expects to finish top-10 at provincials and help Oak Bay to a championship in Nanaimo.

Top-three team scores:

Oak Bay -11
Carihi – 44
NDSS (Nanaimo) – 84

In the junior girls race, Iris Tinmouth of Mark R. Isfeld Secondary of Courtenay won the 4.4K, two-lap race in the time of 16:26, while Jamie Harker of St. Margaret’s was second in 17:20 and third overall was Grace Fulton of St. Andrews 10 seconds back.

Top-three team scores:

Isfeld -29
NDSS – 34
Lambrick Park – 45

Liam Kirkendale from Claremont won the boys junior race in the time of 14:23. He finished exactly 10 seconds in front of Gage Zanette of John Barsby. Aiden Grew with Lambrick Park finished third in the time of 14:46.

“I knew I had some competition from up island. There is one guy who has beaten me a couple of times, and I beat him a couple of times, so I am pretty happy to win today,” said Kirkendale. “The plan was to go out fast and get ahead of him because his final 100-metre kick is very strong, so I had to keep him from getting any kind of lead, early.”

It worked well.

Claremont is a five-minute walk up the hill. Kirkendale used the home course knowledge to his advantage. “yeah, I know the course really well, plus anywhere I go there is a hill, so I am prepared for that.”

Top-three team scores:

John Barsby – 23
Oak Bay – 53
Claremont – 59

Over 400 kids from throughout Vancouver Island competed in the regional championships, qualifying their schools for the provincial championships, which are taking place in Nanaimo on Saturday, November 3rd at Beban Park.

Full results are available at: www.racedaytiming.ca