Sidney hammer throw teen a strong contender

Courtenay Neville-Rutherford qualifies for nationals again

Sidney teen Courtenay Neville-Rutherford is headed once again to the Canadian National Legion Track and Field Championships this weekend in Charlottetown

Sidney teen Courtenay Neville-Rutherford is headed once again to the Canadian National Legion Track and Field Championships this weekend in Charlottetown

Sidney teen Courtenay Neville-Rutherford is on her way once again to the Canadian National Legion Track and Field Championships.

Neville-Rutherford, 16, will be attending the championships for the second time in the hammer throw, a track and field event where the name of the game is to throw a heavy metal ball attached to a wire and handle. Neville-Rutherford has been training in hammer throw for eight years.

“I’m excited, I’m really hoping to medal [at nationals],” she said. “I think it will be a different experience than last year just because of where it is.”

Last year, Neville-Rutherford, a long-time Pen Track member, began working with Pacific Athletics under coach Sheldon Gmitroski in Victoria. She said her eventual goal is to aim for bigger and better competitions like the Pan Ams and the Olympics.

Although slightly daunted by the travel distance to Prince Edward Island, the teen will be accompanied to Charlottetown by her teammates to compete in the national event.

“It’s seven hours of travel so it’s a long time but I’m going with my team so it should be fun,” she said.

Last year’s games were held in Ottawa where Neville-Rutherford took the gold with a throw of 45.94 metres, not a personal best at the time, but enough to clinch the top spot. She hopes to do the same again this year with a goal throw of 56 m.

“I placed first in the Coquitlam Track and Field Championships where I threw 54.11 so I’d like to get 56,” she said.

The teen competes in Charlottetown Aug. 17-19.

 

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