Like many other athletes this week, Korah collegiate’s Kaitlyn Train is searching for the key that’ll turn junior success into senior glory.
Train, who finished fourth in the Junior Girls Division 400 metres at last year’s Ontario Federation of School Athletic Associations (OFSAA) championships, is entered in that race and four other Senior Division events in the two-day, High School Track and Field Meet.
The annual event begins today at 4:30 p.m. at the Jo Forman Track. Action resumes Wednesday at 9 a.m.
The 16-year-old, Grade 11 student, is also scheduled to compete in the 400-metre hurdles and high jump, along with two relays, the 4x100 and 4x400 metres.
But for Train, the 400 m is definitely where it’s at.
“That’s my most important event,” said Train, who ran one minute, 00.73 seconds at last year’s OFSAA. “I’ve trained harder this year and I feel as if I’m in better shape this year than I was last year.”
A big part of that, said Train, is her decision a couple of months ago to join the Sault Athletics Track Club.
Yet, she realizes the jump in divisions has her matched against much-stronger competition. Most notably her best friend, Christine Thomas of Sir James Dunn, and Korah teammates Jaclyn Cummings and Sarah Fortais.
Cummings captured first place in the senior 400 m at last year’s city meet.
“Winning will be a lot harder than it was last year. I expect it to be very competitive,” said Train, who placed second in the 400m at last year’s Northern Ontario Secondary Schools Association (NOSSA) championships. “But I’m excited and I’m looking forward to the challenge. I’ll try my best.”
When it was suggested to her that she could be the favourite, based on her times and last year’s OFSAA showing, Train said she’s in no way overconfident.
Meantime, Train also captured the junior 300-metre hurdles and long jump at last year’s city meet. With her focus on the 400 m, she admits she hasn’t spent as much time preparing for those events this year.
“It would be tough to win all three this year,” Train said. “This is probably the strongest group of senior girls competitors in a while.”
Top Sault finishers advance to the NOSSA meet, slated for May 25-26 in Sudbury. OFSAA is scheduled for June 1-3 in Toronto.