2019 Inter Provincial Athletics

Hello members. This year, Christchurch Avon Athletic Club had 7 athletes in the Canterbury Inter Provincial team. The Canterbury team won the national competition and we had both the team captains this year – Maia Columbus and Beau Brackenridge

Both athletes have written excellent reports for you to read below.

Dear Marilyn
I would like to start by thanking Avon athle@cs for contribu@ng funds and making this experience possible for me. This really was something that I enjoyed, and I’m sad that this opportunity is no longer available for me. I had already packed my bag about two days before we even left, I was so excited! We were staying at the Rangi-ruru girls school hostel, I had heard that it was really nice. I hopped into the car full of energy and excited to compete and see my mates. Once we were there we were shown our rooms. I was in a room with my mate Jack, I was quite happy with my room. We went down into the common room and we were all delighted to see a pool table which we played on for most of the afternoon. The next day we were up at 7:00am ready and showered before breakfast, then we had a team meeting, we were told we were going to go to the track and have a run
around, then eat our lunches and walk back through Hagley park. Then we were told to go and pack whatever we thought we needed, And we were off. Arriving at the new track here in Christchurch still sends chills down my spine as I love competing here. We lined up in order of height for the photo. This took a while to get a good photo where everyone was looking and wasn’t closing their eyes, sneezing, frowning and so on.

Then we all did some very light practice like block starts, we then gathered in our relay teams and Craig took us for some change practice and went over the rules. My tummy was rumbling when we where finally given our food it tasted SOOO good. When then caught the bus to hagley and walked through the park back to the hostel. We were back at the hostel getting ready for dinner, once everyone was done, we had another meeting, everyone had calmed down and were getting ready for the big day ahead we packed our bags and I was in bed at 9:00pm, thinking about the day ahead I dozed off.

Up at 6:15am the next morning, nervous for my favourite event, the dreaded 400m!!!!! that I was hopeful of running in under a minute, and the long jump. Showered and fed, we were all sitting in the bus nervous but excited. You could almost feel the nerves on the bus, the drive there seemed to go for ages, but was only about 10 minutes. We played lots of music on our way there, to get us inspired and ready for competing. As soon as we were there the deafening sound of 10 other teams chanting and yelling was crazy, but as soon as Canterbury got there the level of intensity raised to
100%, we were owning the chants. Being the captain from Canterbury Maia and I had to read the participants oath. Soon after I went for a warmup, the nerves were stirring like crazy. I set a goal to jump 5 metres, 1,2 and 3 jumps passed sadly not achieving my goal but still reasonably happy with my performance. Next up I had the 400m. Warming up I felt sick as this was my big event. We were marshalled and walking over I was fizzing to go. I lined up behind my blocks as I took a deep breath in “on your marks” “set” ……. BANG the race was on I had a fast boy from Otago in my heat
on the outside of me. My legs were burning at the 60 mark, I was happy with my effort.

Then we headed back to the hostel to rest up. Showered and ready we the had free time for a bit. We were called to come for dinner then we had to get into bed and think of the next day. Waking up the next morning was even harder than the first morning. I was sore and just as nervous for an even bigger day. On the second day I ran my 800m, hurdles and the 100m in the medley. After having breakfast and packing my bag, we arrived
at the stadium again this time not greeted by hundreds of shouting teenagers. I had to warm up straight away for hurdles. It was pouring with rain. After what felt like a very sufficient warmup we were told to head to the marshalling tent. Asher, Jack B and I were the Canty boys who were trying to break 12 seconds. I was in the first heat. I was nervous… “on your marks” ….. pause “set” BANG. I was sprinting, then I jumped and again after eight hurdles I had finished. Not running under 12 but still happy. I would also like to say a very big thanks to Jill for her amazing coaching and perseverance with all of us kids.

Next was my 800m. Warming up I felt the same as I did for the 400, everyone was nervous, I was warming up with William Laing. William and kyan both ran before me, running extremely well. I needed to run fast to up hold their standard. We got called onto the track on you marks BANG off at an extremely fast pace. The second lap was hard, lactic acid made my legs heavy and the finish was round the bend pushing in the last hundred and then relieved to finish. Now I could relax a bit and have some food, I looked back at the big morning I was happy with my performance.

All the medley teams got called down to warmup. We warmed up together and went over all of the rules, we finished talking, put our spikes on. We got called and our team was there and ready straight away, it was a good start, we were all pumped because this was the last event we were doing all year, and the last of this meet. Liam was running the 800m, William was running the 400m, Kyan was running the 200m, and Couper and I were running the 100s. I started our team off and I took some one over then passing to Couper, then to Liam and so on until Kyan brought it home for us and we got 2nd to Auckland.

After all the medleys and relays we had a big chant off, again it was awesome, everyone was doing backflips and cool tricks, we had some cool chants and we got to hear others as well, this was an awesome experience. Then, all the Canterbury people were getting photos before we left the track, so we could remember our time. We got on the bus and celebrated, finishing our competing to the best of our ability. Now it was time to get into some nice clothes and meet in the dinner room before heading to our prizegiving and disco. We didn’t know who had won, we were hoping we had done enough to have retained the shield!! They read through the teams in order of last to first, what a nail biting experience! We knew all the other teams had been placed with their points except us and Auckland. “And the second place goes to…………Auckland”! That means we had won!!!! We tried to hide our excitement for just a moment to give our opponents some space and still enjoy second place. This also meant that the captains (Maia and
Myself) had to read a speech.

We have won, WE HAVE WON! All our efforts combined meant that the Canterbury kids had triumphed in being the best team in New Zealand for points/PB’s. Every member of our team went onto the stage to shake hands and receive a medal. They took lots of photos and Auckland chanted for us it was cool. Then we read our speeches in front of many people thanking and congratulating them, I was so proud of our team. But I was most proud of being able to dress in red and black and being part of that spirit and determination that makes us Canterbury kids.

Thank you to everyone involved. It was an amazing experience that I will remember forever.

Beau Brackenridge.

Walking into the Rangi Ruru boarding house made me nervous and excited at the same time. I was nervous for the competition, for how the team would go, and for how I would go. I was very excited as I knew I was going to get the chance to compete against the best athletes in New Zealand. Hanging around at the boarding house on Thursday night was great chance to get to know new people in our team and catch up with old friends from last year. We also practiced our chants so the twelve year olds could learn them.

Friday morning we were up bright and early to head down to the track so we scoffed down breakfast and made our lunches before leaving Rangi. Leaving at 11, we caught a bus down to the track to get our photos taken, have a few relay run throughs and a test run on the track. On the bus ride back to accommodation Lyn thought it would be a good idea for us all to walk back through Hagley to Rangi, so we were dropped off down Hagley Avenue and strolled back through the park. It was a great chance to unwind. We got back to our accommodation and were suited up with our Canterbury uniforms and bags.

Saturday morning was a very early start and we were all hyped for the competition. Chanting on the bus was a great way to wake us all up and get us ready for competition. It all kicked off after Beau and I read the athletes oath, with the first events at 10am. The day flew by and the next thing I knew I was back on the bus to Rangi and we were all celebrating the massive amount of PBs between us all. We spent the rest of the evening chilling out in the common room and talking about the next day.

On Sunday morning I took it upon myself as captain to wake up the 13 year old girls nicely by pouring just a little bit of water on everyone’s faces – a good start to the day I’d say! After 11 sleep deprived slightly wet teenage girls made it downstairs we were on the bus again ready for another day of intense competition. The hurdles and relays in the afternoon were the main point scoring events overall so all those not doing hurdles were out there screaming and shouting for all the Canterbury kids. After the hurdles finished the game was on, everyone knew how serious the points were and we were all aware that the winning team’s points could all come down to one relay. Canterbury won 7 of the 10 relay events!

The bus ride to prizegiving made me nervous – would we win or would we come second? That question was popping up in my mind left, right and centre. I could barely contain my excitement as we strode into the hall shouting out our chants. When Canterbury was announced the winning team I was overwhelmed with happiness and everyone screamed and cheered. We congratulated Auckland on coming second but also congratulated ourselves for putting so much effort into the competition. We were presented with our medals and then Beau and I had to do our speeches. We were both very grateful to have had such great managers, officials, coaches and athletes beside us for the weekend. The disco was so much fun, most of it was spent dancing, singing along to our favourite songs and catching up with people from other provinces.

I am extremely grateful to have been selected in this team for two years in a row and it was a privilege to be captain this year. I have made so many memories and friends from different clubs and regions over these past years and I hope to stay in touch with everyone. Thank you for the past two years. – Maia Columbus