Aiming for the podium

B.C. track and field championships in Burnaby

Hayley Stewart of Lord Tweedsmuir competes in the long jump at last year’s B.C. Championships in Burnaby. Stewart will again be at Swangard Stadium this weekend for the 2011 provincial finals.

She’s done it before. And results to date prove she could do it again.

Asianna Covington could find herself on the podium in three events at this weekend’s B.C. Track and Field championships in Burnaby this weekend.

A Surrey resident and student at Vancouver’s Little Flower Academy, Covington has qualified for the provincial meet in hammer throw, discus and shot put with results that should have her contending for gold medals should she repeat those efforts at Swangard Stadium.

Covington is the defending provincial champion in the women’s shot put event, winning gold in 2010 with a throw of 11.65m.

Covington also won a pair of bronze medals last year. She was just behind silver medalist Samantha Kennedy of Cloverdale’s Lord Tweedsmuir Secondary. In qualifying for the provincial meet this spring, Kennedy threw 52.06m, while Covington qualified with 51.31m.

Covington will be challenged by Brett Hastings of Reynolds Secondary in Victoria in the discus. Hastings won a silver medal in 2010 with a throw of 35.57m, just 10cm further than Covington, and both competitors have thrown better than 38m in qualifying for this year’s provincial championship.

Serena Graf of Seaquam Secondary could also win three medals in field events, after reaching the podium twice last year.

The defending provincial champion in the girls javelin, Graf was first at the Fraser Valley meet with a throw of 39.8 metres, an improvement of the toss of 38.92m which won provincial gold a year ago.

Graf won a bronze medal in the shot put in 2010, finishing two places behind Covington, and is again a medal contender. She just missed the podium in hammer throw last year, placing fourth, and is a medal contender again this year.

Distance runner Keffri Neal of Fleetwood Park is a medal contender in two events. He set a Fraser Valley record of 1:50.72 seconds in the 800m race, a time which would have won the B.C. championship race in 2010 in which he placed second. Neal is also contesting the 1,500m race, and event in which he placed second at the Fraser Valley meet in 4:01.75 seconds.  Last year’s race at the provincials was won in 4:04.02.

Surrey North Delta Leader

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