By Ali Lee, Vikes Communications

VICTORIA, B.C. – A total of 13 track athletes from the University of Victoria Vikes men’s and women’s track program are racing in Calgary, Jun 27-30, in hopes of a chance to represent Canada at the 2012 London Olympics.

Vikes standouts are set to compete in the men’s and women’s 800-m and include recent Under-23 Canadian national team member Rachel Francois, as well as Adam Gaudes, John PrattThomas Riva and Karl Robertson.


The first group of Vikes faces set to hit the track, in the women’s 1500-m, are senior Brittany Therrien, second-year Jenna Van Vliet and rookie Maddy MacDonald. Therrien enters the meet after breaking the 4:30 barrier in Vancouver at the Harry Jerome meet (4:28.04). Van Vliet and MacDonald also raced personal bests to qualify at the Harry Jerome in 4:29.13 and 4:31.15, respectively. In the men’s 1500-m, senior Kyle Irvine and second-year Jackson Bocksnick will race the qualifying rounds after the women on Jun 27, with an eye on the 1500-m final set for Thursday, Jun 28.

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UVic’s Rachel Francois will compete in the 800m event in Calgary (Photo by Christian J. Stewart – ISN) 

In the women’s 800-m, scheduled for Jun. 28, three Vikes will take to the tape including Shauna McInnis, Kendra Pomfret and Francois. McInnis has been consistent around the 2:12 mark for the past three races, while Pomfret and Francois have been continually improving in this event over the season. Francois was recently named to the Under-23 Canadian team that will compete at the North American, Central American and Carribean (NACAC) championship as an 800-m runner after a 2:03.97 qualifying race time. Pomfret records a 2:07.70 time and will have a good chance, along side Francois, at qualifying for the finals on Jun 29.

In the men’s 800-m, the four-some of Pratt, Gaudes, Riva and Robertson will be looking to qualify for the Jun. 29 800-m finals. Third-year runner Riva, also qualified to race at the NACAC championship, raced a 1:48.92 at the Donovon Bailey Invitational in Edmonton to qualify for the Calgary event. Gaudes, named a 2012 Canada West outstanding track performer, clocks a personal best of 1:49.57 this season and will be looking to improve on that in Calgary.

Fifth-year Vike Clifford Childs will be the lone UVic contender in the men’s 5-km race, scheduled for Jun 29.

Francois and Riva will compete in at the Canadian Olympic Trials and immediately following will depart for Guanajuato, Mexico to compete at the NACAC championship.