London vaulters top juniors

They’ve been playing a long-distance tug-of-war with the Canadian record in the event, but Robin Bone and Alysha Newman finally went head-to-head for the women’s pole vault title Sunday at the national junior (19 and under) track and field championships at Ste. Therese, Que.

Bone, the Oakridge grad and Western student who had just returned from competing at the World University Games in Kazan, Russia, four days before, eventually prevailed with a best height of 3.9 metres. She passed at 3.95 m and missed all three attempts at 4.0 m.

Newman, the Mother Teresa grad and Eastern Michigan student who recently improved Bone’s Canadian junior mark of 4.22 m to 4.31 m at a pole vault meet in Toronto, cleared 3.80 m and passed at 3.9 m and 3.95 m. The London Legion athlete also missed her three tries at 4.0 m.

They competed into a strong headwind, which helped account for the lower-than-expected heights, but Bone also was hindered by a long trip from Kazan to New York to Montreal, a journey her poles didn’t make.

“I had one day to catch up and I had to jump on some random poles,” Bone said. “I was just trying not to fall asleep at the track.”

Bone said her main goal wasn’t to win, but to secure a spot on the Canadian team for the Pan­American junior championships Aug. 23-25 in Medellin, Colombia. She and Newman will be Canada’s reps in the event.

Bone gave experience in Kazan, where she placed 11th, mixed reviews.

“It was absolutely the coolest meet, being on a team with a bunch of Olympians and I really learned a lot from the older girls,” she said.

“But next time I won’t make the same mistake,” Bone said. “Before the competition I was scrolling down the start list and noticed the heights were around where I have been jumping. Then I scrolled down the list of birthdates and I was seeing 1985, 1986 and I started thinking, ‘My parents weren’t even married then.’ Looking back, I’m still wondering why I was even worried about ages.”

Theirs were but two of several top area performances at the three-day meet.

Nicole Setterington of London Legion won the women’s 100-metre hurdles in an official time of 13.80 seconds. Deshaunda Morrison of Calgary had the same official time, but Setterington’s actual time of 13.792 seconds (times are rounded up to hundredths of a second) was better by 0.002 seconds.

Charles Nguyen of St. Thomas Legion won the men’s hammer throw with a toss of 64.88 metres; Madeline Yungblut, a Madill grad from Wroxeter, won the women’s 3,000 metres in 9:31.43; Drelan Bramwell of Sarnia Athletics was third in the men’s 200 metres in 21.62 seconds; Connor Young of London-Western was third in the men’s pole vault with a 4.20-metre effort; Taylor Farquhar of London-Western was fourth in the women’s 400-metre hurdles in 1:00.50 and Carolyn Adams of London Legion was fourth in the women’s high jump with a leap of 1.68 metres.

Alysha Newman
Alysha Newman


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