Close to 50 students in grades 7-12 from across Labrador competed in the regional cross-country running races last week in Labrador West.
The girls ran a 3km race and the boys ran a 5km, in what coach Peter McCormack said is a great learning experience.
“I think what the kids remember most about school is their teammates and the people they meet on these trips, it's a very important part of the whole school process. They know kids from all over the province.”
But it’s not without its challenges, he said.
“The kids run three to four times a week and there's a packet of kids involved in practically everything. We have a few of our girls going out for soccer this week, so you're trying to train for cross-country running and they're going to pay soccer. It's a busy time of year with a few sports on top of one another.”
The boys team from Makkovik had a tough time. Due to weather problems the team didn’t arrive until 9pm the night before the race, and had a walkthrough on the course only two hours before the race.
Two students from Mealy Mountain showed what true sportsmanship means after a student rolled his ankle and his teammate stayed behind and ran alongside him for support.
“Cross-country is a tough sport to give a sportsmanship award unless you see something that really stands out, and this really stood out to us.”
The teams from Menihek did well, winning the boys and girls races and will move on the provincial races in Stephenville.
“I always consider the runners the truest athletes. In other sports they have teammates to push them but with this they’re on their own. It’s a tough course on the sand puts in Wabush, and they were hurting by the end of it.”