Brinkhof throws for gold

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Jakob Brinkhof finished on top of the podium with personal-best performances in javelin and shot put at the Alberta Schools’ Athletic Association championships.


In the junior male division the Grade 11 Bellerose Bulldog stuck the javelin at 51.30 metres and his farthest shot put throw was 13.38m at last weekend’s competition in Calgary.


“It means a lot actually what I did,” Brinkhof said. “I was real proud to do it for my school.”


The St. Albert Mustangs Track and Field Club athlete was a provincial medal contender as the Edmonton zone winner in javelin (41.91m) and shot put (13.33m).


“In javelin I won bronze at (Legion) nationals last year so I thought I should be able to do this,” Brinkhof said. “Shot put was a real treat. I was real excited about that.”


After five throws in javelin Brinkhof ranked fourth at 45.75m with one attempt remaining.


“I was kind of scared but on my next throw it was a new PB by two metres. It also broke the Alberta Legion standard so I have a chance at going to nationals again this year and it also broke the Alberta provincial record for my age so I’m pretty happy with that,” said the sixth-place junior provincial finisher last year at 40.52m as an under-age competitor (he skipped Grade 9 at Lorne Akins School to attend International Baccalaureate classes at Bellerose as a Grade 10 student).


Mark Moore of the Dr. E.P. Scarlett Lancers of Calgary was the runner-up at 48.39m.


In shot put Brinkhof set a new PB on his fifth attempt. Garret Deep of the M.E. Lazerte Voyageurs placed second at 13.33m, which was Brinkhof’s previous PB.


High school provincials were a tune-up for this weekend’s CALTAF provincial team trials in Calgary.


“My main goals are just to improve from where I’m at,” said Brinkhof, 16.


The Legion national standards in javelin are 40m in U16 and 45m in U18 and the provincial Legion standards are 42m in U16 and 51m in U18.


“If you break the Canadian standards that will let you enter the event. Alberta has higher standards so they will pay everything,” Brinkhof said of the Aug. 15 to 17 Legion nationals in Langley, B.C.


He also has high hopes for shot put and discus. The Legion national standard in discus is 40m for both U16 and U18 in Canada and 44m in U16 and 46m in U18 in Alberta. In shot put it’s 12.50m in U16 and 13m in U18 in Canada and 13.10 in U16 and 14.58 in U18 in Alberta.


“My discus is not at the same level as the other ones but I hope to get it up there,” said Brinkhof of his PB of 33.85m in the discipline.


His long-range goal this summer is to nail the 55m mark in javelin.


“I always want to throw farther because I want to go to a university in the states for track and field, so the farther the better and 55 is a real realistic goal considering I have two more months left in the season. I’m just warming up right now,” said the 2013 finalist for the Athletics Alberta midget male athlete of the year award.


Last year Brinkhof represented the Mustangs at Legion nationals in Langley and was rewarded with bronze with what was then a PB of 46.70m in U16 javelin.


“I came in seeded 11th and I just wanted to make top eight and get my money’s worth out of the trip. I wasn’t even picked for the Alberta team even though I broke the standard so I went representing St. Albert and I got bronze. When I was on the podium and they announced Jakob Brinkhof from the St. Albert Mustangs that was a great feeling.”


Brinkhof is also gunning to make Team Alberta for the 2014 Western Canadian Midget and Youth Championships and in July will go for gold at the Alberta Summer Games in Airdrie in javelin, shot put, discus and hammer throw.


Next year Brinkhof will pour all his energies into representing Canada at the IAAF World Youth U17 Championships.


“That is my big goal.”


The six-foot-two, 205-pound righty has made significant strides in javelin after giving it a shot in early May last year and has also improved in the rest of the throwing events.


“I’ve been getting a lot stronger. I’ve got 35 more pounds on me than last year at this time,” Brinkhof said. “With my javelin technique I tried this crossover. Normally I would run straight and then throw but now I run straight for the first bit and I move my hips and step my right foot in front and then my left foot behind. It worked really well and I’ve just continued to do it.”


TRACK RESULTS: Provincial medal winners included Brandon Jillings of the St. Albert Skyhawks (silver in junior male discus at 38.06m) and Tyler Lazarenko of the Bulldogs (bronze in the senior male 100m at 11.06 seconds and 200m at 22.70).


Zane Macdonald of the Sturgeon Spirits placed sixth in the senior male 1,500m at 4:19.27, Brooklyn Failing of the Paul Kane Blues was seventh in the intermediate high jump at 1.45m and Lauren Halldorson of Sturgeon finished ninth in the junior female triple jump at 9.24m.


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