The University of Victoria Vikes cross country and track team have gone back to a familiar recruiting ground for their first signing for the 2017-18 season. Vikes head coach Brent Fougner is pleased to announce the addition of Sophie Sigfstead from Edmonton, Alta for the 2018-29 season.
“I am both extremely grateful and excited to embark upon the next chapter of my life at the University of Victoria,” said Sigfstead. “Not only have I been afforded the opportunity to train under the immense expertise of coaches Hilary Stellingwerff and Brent Fougner, but also to enjoy and be a part of an amazing legacy that has been established within the track and cross country teams.”
Sigfstead joining the team will raise the number of Albertans to a total of 11 athletes competing for the Vike men’s and women’s cross country and track teams.
The product of the Edmonton Harriers Track and Field Club boasts a wealth of accomplishments in both track and cross country.
The 17-year old is the current Under-20 Canadian Outdoor record holder at 2000-metres, clocking in a time of 6:06.59 at the Canadian National Youth Championships in 2015.
At those same championships, Sigfstead also set the Canadian Under-16 record at 1200-metres, while simultaneously claiming U-16 national titles in the 800-,1200- and 2000-metre races.
“We are looking forward to having the opportunity to work with Sophie,” said Fougner. “She has been on our radar since 2015 when she ran 2:06 in the 800-metre at the Victoria International. She will have an immediate impact on our team in both cross country and track.”
Further to those outstanding performances at the National Championships, the extremely accomplished Sigfstead also holds 22 Provincial track and field age group records.
“I am really looking forward to the exceptional resources, facilities and competitive opportunities that the Vikes track and cross-country program has to offer, as in combination with the high level of coaching I will receive, I believe that such incredible resources will fuel my athletic success,” said Sigfstead. “I truly feel at home in Victoria, and will make every effort to represent the Vikes well next year and beyond.”
In addition to the great fit athletically, Sigfstead intending to major in Biomedical Engineering, is excited about the academic opportunities available to her at UVic.
“The strength of the engineering program at UVic is very promising, and as such, I am looking forward to being challenged in my academic pursuits as well as my athletic ones,” said Sigfstead. “I love furthering my knowledge in areas that interest me, and I believe that my program choice will allow me to do that in a variety of ways.”
Internationally ranked in multiple distances throughout her young career, Sigfstead will undoubtedly be a key addition to the Vikes.
“Sophie has all the qualities we look for in a student recruit; work ethic, leadership and top academics to go along with her talents as a runner,” said Fougner. “The program and the university are getting an exceptional young woman.”
Full Name: Sophie Sigfstead
Events/Specialty Races: 800m, 1500m, Cross Country
Intended major/program at UVic: Biomedical Engineering
High School: Strathcona High School
Hometown: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
2016: Don McAngus Award Recipient for Leadership in Athletics
2015: Leroy Washburn Award Nominee for Top Female Legion Athlete
2014 & 2015: Athletics Alberta U16 Female Track Athlete of the Year
Previous teams competed for:
Edmonton Harriers Track and Field Club (6 years)
2015: U-20 Outdoor 2000m Canadian Record Holder (6:06.59)
2015: U16 Outdoor 1200m Canadian Record Holder (3:26.16)
2015: Canadian National Youth Championships Gold Medals: 800m, 1200m, and 2000m
2015: Ranked 14th in the world and 1st in Canada for U18 800m with a time of 2:06.82, as well as 3rd in Canada for U18 1500m in a time of 4:26.83
2016: Intermediate Girls City 800m and 1500m Champion
2017: City Senior Girls Cross-Country High School Champion
Holds 22 Provincial Indoor and outdoor track and field age group records