Sunday, September 23, 2007

Tino at the Chieftain Classic: a great start!

Saturday, September 15. I had returned from a business trip to France 36 hours earlier and told Agnès that I would handle the long car pool down to Toro Park in Salinas (70 miles each way). A way to share our parental responsibilities as well as to enjoy seeing the boys competing, as many races were happening during the week and work days.

Max has been at Tino since last year, coming from Hyde. He was joined by Alex this year, from Lawson Middle School. Both run in the cross-country team headed by Coach Armstrong. The school's official name is Cupertino High, but runners go with the nickname Tino, as it appears on their uniform. Coach Armstrong maintains a lot of information on the team activities and results on his website.

Last year was marked by both boys' and girls' varsity teams making it to the Central Coast Section final meet, something which had not happened for many years (Cupertino High School will celebrate its 50 years in 2008).

Sport is very intense in high school, especially compared to what we were doing at the same age back in France. The season actually starts way before the beginning of school. Coach Armstrong sets a whole summer conditioning program, culminating with the last two weeks before school: two sessions every week day, plus one long run on Saturdays.

Being prepped by Max, Alex was not too surprised by such intensity. Although they sometimes complain about the hard work, it was pleasant to see that their efforts are already paying off, in particular at this meet.

After 3 miles of dirt trail mostly:
  1. The JV (Junior Varsity) boys (with Alex) placed 2nd overall
  2. The varsity boys team placed 3rd overall (Max holding the plaque below)
  3. As for the girls, Sumika got passed in the final sprint for a very impressive third overall.
A special mention for the girls: the team is small this year so, to allow Sumika to compete at the highest level for her senior year, they are just enough to form a team of 7 and run at the varsity level which is challenging. This is where you see that, although running is an individual act, cross-country is a team sport. Way to go, girls!

This is really a great start for the teams, showing much improvement over last year, as Coach Armstrong noted to everyone's satisfaction.

A big thank you and congratulations to the organizing school, Palma High School. A very professional job, along with the presence of the officials from the Pacific Association of USA Track & Field.

Way to go, the new generation! We stay tuned for great news this season. And see you next week at the Stanford Invitational!

1 comment:

willgotthardt said...


Great that you are able to share the same sporting interest with your kids, I'm sure they benefit from your experience/ability...I can see the day I'm running behind three (or more) Pommier's in the ultra results. ;-)

Good to see you (briefly) in passing on the trail at Big Basin a couple weekends back.

Will G.