The Lancers Men’s Cross-Country team is focusing on capturing a medal at the Canadian Interuniversity Sport championship.
“Let’s stop being second,” fourth-year captain Fraser Kegel said. “We’re sick of this silver medal. Let’s get the gold medal this year.”
The men’s cross team has an impressive history at the nationals, capturing the silver medal every year since 2009. Kegel reassures that the team would be more then happy with the silver, but has higher expectations for this season.
“Even though Guelph has a good team, we have a better team,” he said.
Leading the team is captain Matt Walters, who is no stranger to CIS hardware after receiving five individual and three CIS medals.
“The team is on track, working well together and where we want to be even on tired legs,” Walters said.
“We are doing a lot of the same routines as last year, longer intervals, a lot of hills, strength work early on, and I think that really pays off.”
The 10 km CIS championship men’s race, set in London, Ont. at the Thames Valley Golf Course Nov. 10, is the longest race the Lancers will face this season. They will send seven of their top male runners to the event. Around 10 runners are battling for the two spots that are still up for grabs, said Walters.
“We look good.We have Matt, who has a great shot at winning,” said Kegel.
The game plan is to place three strong veteran racers behind Walters and have them all place in the teens in a shot for a medal.
“Team-wise it will be a good battle for second,” Walters said. “Guelph is even stronger than last year, unless something crazy happens, but that’s what racing is all about.”
Last year, Walters finished third individually and he’s staying focused right now. “I would be lying to say I wasn’t focusing on trying to win,” he said. “I want to try and take the win.”
Up next for the Lancers is the Guelph, Ont. open Oct. 13 at the Guelph Arboretum.
“We will train through Guelph, get it in, race on tired legs, do what we can and get used to it,” Walters said. “We then come back and focus on the OUA and CIS on fresh legs.”
The OUA Championship is Oct. 27 in Toronto.