Track and field championships back in Richmond

By Hannah Scott

Published 2:20 PDT, Fri May 20, 2022

Last Updated: 12:39 PDT, Fri June 10, 2022

The B.C. Elementary Track and Field Championships are returning to Richmond at the end of this month.

This is the 52nd year that Kajaks Track and Field Club will host the event, scheduled for May 27 to 29 at the Clement Track and Collier Throwing Centre.

“We are looking forward to seeing more than a thousand elementary school athletes who come from all over B.C.,” says Kajaks executive board member Lanie Man. “The B.C. Elementary Track and Field Championships (BCEC) has been a stepping stone for most kids as their first exposure to compete in a big sanctioned meet. We strive to provide a fun, safe, and supportive environment for the student athletes to compete in.”

The event is open to all students in grades 3 to 7, with no qualifying or experience necessary. Participants can register as individuals, choosing the events they want to compete in, or as part of their school team. Medals, ribbons, and team awards will be given out in running, jumping, and throwing events.

When the event first started, Man says, more than 70 per cent of participants came from Richmond schools. 

“In the mid to late 1960s, there were only meets for high school students.  Longtime Kajaks coaches Carl Savage and Kim Young thought of how to fill that void for the elementary students, (and) created the BCEC in 1968 for that reason,” says Man. “At its peak in the 1970s and 1980s, it boasted over 2,500 athletes who came (from) as far (away) as Bella Coola.”

The event is the biggest fundraiser for the Kajaks, and organizers want to increase the participation of Richmond schools.

“This year not all elementary schools have a track zone meet,” says Man. “The BCEC can give them the experience of a real track and field meet.”

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