Sault Stryders
Running Club

MacLennan doesn't see silver lining despite 2 championship medals
Reported August 18, 2006 by Greg Layson for The Sault Star
Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario

Richard MacLennan struggles to find the silver lining in two second-place finishes on a national scale.

After blasting past most of the field in a time of 52.32 seconds, MacLennan earned a silver medal in the 400-metre dash at the Legion National Track and Field Championships at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, BC Saturday.

He followed that up with a six-metre leap in the long jump, again good enough for silver.

"I feel like I could have run much better. I wasn't that happy with it," MacLennan said Wednesday via cell phone from the campus of Simon Fraser.

"I started off too slow, and I was tired at the beginning of day because of the time change."

MacLennan landed in B.C. Thursday and ran the race Saturday, before he was fully adjusted to the three-hour time change.

And the long jump felt strange to the 15-year-old athlete, too.

"Everything about it felt weird. The board was farther away from the sand," MacLennan said.

"It didn't have the same feel as other tracks I've been to."

His time and distance were both short of personal bests.

"I tried to catch the guy (who won the 400m), I just didn't have a enough left," MacLennan said. "I found that I have to run it more as a sprint. I know I can hold guys off at the end."

MacLennan just started running the 400m dash this past high school track season when his cross country coach at St. Mary's, Mike DuVuono, encouraged him to run the event.

He qualified for the Legion national championships in a time of 51.74, but his personal best came at the Ontario Federation of Schools Athletic Associations in Toronto this summer when he posted a 51.15.

In BC, MacLennan did manage to win a pair of gold medals at the meet.

He ran the opening leg of the 1,600m medley relay and ran the third leg of the 4 X 100m relay, helping Team Ontario win both.

"In the 4 X 100," MacLennan said, "I just ran as hard as I could and held the lead."