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By: Raphael Jamin

There hasn’t been a cross-country running team in Valemount for eight years, but already the local team is making their footprint.

With enough interest this fall, the team began training three weeks ago with RCMP Const. Smith as coach and teacher Dan Lawless and myself helping out.

Just last weekend, the team left for Prince George to compete in their first race as a team. Six runners (Sean Carson, HarriSalonen, Kale Moth, Olivia Bruce, Britney Kerik, and NileshAghnoo) made the three hour journey to compete in pouring rain. The trail was only 2km long but everyone excluding the elementary runners had to do the course two or three times.

“There was probably the same amount of uphill in this race as we do in our practice, but it’s all just rolling hills instead of just going straight up and down,” said Olivia Bruce.

“I had to do the trail three times which was not so nice,” said Harri Salonen, a Finnish exchange student and our only runner in the 6km senior race.

The rest of the group only had to do two loops, or 4km.

“I got soaked right there at the start,” said Nilesh Aghnoo as he pointed a large puddle at the start of the course.

Even in cold and rainy conditions, the students still did extremely well. Carson as well as Moth won bronze in their categories and Aghnoo won silver in his.

The team is travelling to their next tournament in Vanderhoof next weekend.