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'(Posted 3:30 a.m., June 6)
Makinde obliterates OFSAA hurdle record, lowers Canadian interscholastic standard
By Fred Sherwin
Orléans Online

Colonel By Secondary School sprinter Segun Makinde looks skyward after setting a new Canadian high school record in the senior boys 110-metre hurdles during Day 2 of the OFSAA provincial track and field championships in Toronto on Friday. Fred Sherwin/Photo


He came. He saw. He conquered. A week after setting four meet records at the OFSAA East Region qualifying meet in Brockville, Colonel By Secondary School sprinter Segun Makinde blew away the field in the 110-metre senior boys hurdles at the OFSAA provincial championships in Toronto on Friday and set a new Canadian
high school record in the process.

Makinde lowered his own Canadian standard of 13.51 seconds, which he set last week, by 0.15 seconds. His time of 13.36 seconds is a full half a second under the former Canadian interscholastic record set by Adam Kunkel in 2000 and 0.42 seconds faster than the OFSAA record previously held by Jamie Ryder.

After seeing his time come up on the scoreboard at the University of Toronto Varsity Centre, Makinde dropped to his knees on the track and said a short prayer before rising back up again and screaming in exaltation to the sky above. Watching it all unfold from the stands was his mother and father and younger brother who made the trip to Toronto to see Makinde rewrite the record book.

It was a seminal moment for a young man who has been lowering records and raising eyebrows ever since he burst onto the high school track and field scene in 2005 as a Grade 9 student.

In 2006 he set an OFSAA record in the junior boys 200-metres and qualified for the World Youth Championships in the Czech Republic where he made it to the semi-finals. He had an off year last year running as a first year senior, but then set a new Canadian age group record in the 200-metres at the Canadian Youth Championships in August.

Makinde is expected to take a run at the OFSAA record in the senior boys 200 this afternoon. The record he's shooting for is 21.30 which was set by Adam Johnson in 2007. Makinde ran a 21.27 in Brockville and is hoping to run faster still.

Segun Makinde ran a blistering 13.36 seconds in the senior boys 110-metre hurdles at the OFSAA provincial track and field championships on Friday. The time is a new OFSAA and Canadian interscholastic record. Fred Sherwin/Photo


As for his performance in the hurdles, the 17-year-old phenom said it felt like he was floating over each hurdle.

"I guess it went like I imagined. I just came out and ran my race and thanks to hard work and God I managed to come out in front. I just feel blessed to be able to come out here under this blue sky and do my job," said Makinde.

After setting a new OFSAA and Canadian interscholastic record, Makinde had 90 minutes to rest up before returning to the track for the final of the senior boys 4x100 metre relay.

The Colonel By relay team, made up of Makinde, Gurvir Khosa, Cameron Smithers and Tolu Makinde, made it into the final with the third fastest qualifying time.

In the run for the gold, they shocked the rest of the field by running a near perfect race to finish in first place in a time of 42.50 seconds. It's the first time in recent memory that a team from the National Capital Region has managed to win a gold medal in the senior boys 4x100 relay.

After the magnitude of their accomplishment had sunk in, the four teammates could barely contain themselves. For Makinde, Khosa and Smithers it's been a long time coming. The three teammates have been on the relay team together for the past four years. After failing to qualify for OFSAA in Grade 9, they made it to the provincial championships the past two years but failed to make the final.

This year with the addition of Tolu Makinde, who finished fourth in the junior boys 100-metre final, the team was confident they could medal and possibly have a shot at gold. They spent the past week working on their baton exchanges and transitions with Canadian sprint relay coach former Olympic gold medalist in the 4x100 metre relay Glenroy Gilbert.

The hard work paid off. As Cameron Smithers handed the baton off to the younger Makinde for the fourth and final leg of the race, they were neck and neck with St. Edmond Campion. Running to redeem his fourth place finish in the 100, Makinde managed to get a slight edge on the St. Edmond runner and held on through the finish line.

Mohamed Souleiman from Louis Riel shaved seven seconds off his previous personal best to finish fourth in the junior boys 1500-metres at the OFSAA provincial championships in Toronto on Friday. Fred Sherwin/Photo


"For the last four years we've been trying to make it to the final and today it finally all came together. This is just sick" said the elder Makinde.

The win was especially sweet for Khosa who forked out $800 this year to join the Lions so he could train with his teammates and work on his technique.

"It's the best $800 I ever spent. This is worth every penny of it," said Gurvir.

There were a handful of other local athletes who did well on Friday also, starting with Tania Bambi from Louis Riel who finished a respectable sixth in the midget girls 80-midget hurdles despite only taking up the event less than a month ago and fellow Rebelles Mohamed Souleiman ran seven seconds under his previous personal best time in the junior boys 1500 to finish in fourth place.

"That was a very difficult race running against some really great athletes, (but) now I know what I have to do next year, so I'll be back for for the gold," said Souleiman, who will be looking to medal in the junior boys 800-metres, which is his stronger event, later today.

Colonel By's Sarah Gariba also had a good day on Friday, finishing sixth in the senior girls 400-metres in a time of 58.05. The 17-year-old, Grade 12 student was hoping to improve on her personal best time of 57.90, but she just came up short. Still, when you consider she had surgery just over six months ago to correct an irregular heart beat, placing sixth in an OFSAA final is an achievement in itself.

"I was hoping to PB, but my ankle gave out with about 80 metres to go and I was just trying to maintain my form," said Gariba, while still managing a broad smile. "I'm just glad to be here competing really. This is my last year so I'm just trying to enjoy the experience."

Here are the rest of the results from Day 2 of the OFSAA Track and Field Championships in Toronto...

Midget Boys
100-metre 17th (11.80) Marty Stirajs, Sir Wilfrid Laurier
1500-metres 14th (4:29.73) Sebastien Saville, Colonel By
100-metre hurdles 11th (14.84) Kevin Nault, Cairine Wilson

High Jump 9th (1.70m) Daniel Bennett, St. Peter

Midget Girls
100-metres 13th (12.99) Tania Bambi, Louis Riel
400-metres 13th (1:02.09) Amanda McKinnon, Louis Riel
80-metre hurdles 6th (12.54) Tania Bambi, Louis Riel
4x100 metre relay DQ Louis Riel (Tania Bambi, Caroline Bernard, Amanda McKinnon and Veronique Dutrisac)

Junior Boys
100-metres 4th (11.15) Tolu Makinde, Colonel By
100-metres 4th (11.60) Gabriel Skupek-Martin, Louis Riel
400-metres 18th (53.09) Isaiah Moses, Gloucester
1500-metres 4th (4:13.03) Mohamed Souleiman, Louis Riel

Junior Girls
1500-metres 8th (4:48.01) Kathryn Tuck, Colonel By
80-metre hurdles 9th (12.47) Anna Gilliatt, Colonel By

Senior Boys
400-metres 7th (50.41) Cameron Smithers, Colonel By
400-metres 10th (50.21) Devin Biocchi, Canterbury
110-metre hurdles 1st (13.36) Segun Makinde, Colonel By *New OFSSA and Canadian Interscholastic Record
4x100 metre relay 1st (42.90) Colonel By (Segun Makinde, Cameron Smithers, Gurvir Khosa and Tolu Makinde)
Triple Jump 9th (13.47m) Brian Okeny, Lester B. Pearson

The Colonel By 4x100 metre relay team made up of (l to r) Tolu Makinde, Cameron Smithers, Segun Makinde and Gurvir Khosa surprised everyone but themselves in winning the seniopr boys sprint relay at the OFSAA provincial champiosnhips on Friday. Fred Sherwin/Photo

'(This story was made possible thanks to the generous support of our local business partners.)

 

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