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Aileen Meagher International Track Classic hosts third stop of 2016 National Track League

Halifax meet to feature competitors from six countries including Canada, United States, Jamaica, Dominican Republic, and Bermuda.  

The 2016 National Track League (NTL) continues tomorrow beginning at 5:20 p.m. Atlantic time in Halifax, N.S., with the Aileen Meagher International Track Classic at St. Mary’s University’s Huskies Stadium. The first two competitions in the series were in Vancouver and Victoria, B.C., on the weekend. The Canadian based international track and field grand prix series will also make stops in Guelph (June 25), and Edmonton, Alta., (July 16).

The Aileen Meagher International Track Classic features a talented international field featuring six Olympians, including Nova Scotia’s own, Jenna Martin-Evans (400m). Other notable Canadian competitors include, Nikkita Holder (100m hurdles), Crystal Emmanuel (100m/200m) and Pamela LeJean (F53 classification shot put).

For those who can’t attend the event, catch the live webcast at AthleticsCanada.tv starting at 6 p.m. Atlantic. Bob Akamian will call the action flanked by Steve Fleck injecting commentary.

Halifax marks one of the final chances that Canadian and international athletes can earn an Olympic qualifying mark. The added pressure should make for a compelling competition in Halifax.

National Development and Development races will be filled with some of Canada’s best University and High School athletes ready to break through to the next level. These are Canada’s future Olympic, Commonwealth Games and Pan Am Games competitors.

Aileen Meagher International Track Classic Preview

Pamela LeJean, originally from Sydney, Cape Breton, is one of Nova Scotia’s most successful athletes, she will compete in the F53 seated shot put. Having already made a qualifying throw at a meet in Arizona in late May for the Rio Paralympic Games, LeJean is looking to add another at the Meagher meet.

The women’s 400-metres features Nova Scotia native and 2012 Olympian Jenna Martin-Evans of Bridgewater, and American Kenya Woodall. Kelsey Balkwill of Windsor, Ont., will take a shot at earning a spot in the women’s 4x400-metres pool for the Rio 2016 Olympics. Kelsey was a member of the 2010 World Junior Championships team.

The women’s 100-metres features a member of Canada’s record-setting 4x100-metres relay team, Crystal Emmanuel of East York, Ont. Emmanuel will face a stiff challenge from American Dominique Booker and fellow Canadian Jelissa Westney of Cambridge, Ont.

The women’s 100-metre hurdles will be one of the marquis events of the evening. Canadian Pan American Games medallist Nikkita Holder of Pickering, Ont., will be up against sub-12.80 performers in Olympian Lavonne Idlette of the Dominican Republic and American Morgan Goodwin.   

The women’s 800-metres features a pair of young Canadians going against a sub 2:00 performer from the United States in Latavia Thomas. Maite Bouchard of Sherbrooke, Que., and Grace Annear of Hampton, N.B., have each improved a great deal over the past year and look to use the Aileen Meagher as a stepping stone to next month’s Canadian Championships.

Watch the 2016 Aileen Meagher International Track Classic Live at 5:20 p.m. on AthleticsCanada.tv. More information about the upcoming National Track League (NTL) competitions in Guelph (June 25) and Edmonton (July 15) can be found here, and Canadian Championship & Olympic Selection Trials here.

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