Seven medals at provincial championships

Justice Migneault knew his times in the pool were getting faster, and he hoped for a medal at the triple A provincial championships...

Justice Migneault won four gold and three silver medals at the provincial championships.

Justice Migneault won four gold and three silver medals at the provincial championships.

Justice Migneault knew his times in the pool were getting faster, and he hoped for a medal at the triple A provincial championships. He wasn’t thinking he would own the podium.

But he walked away with seven medals. The 13-year-old swimmer with the Haney Seahorses won gold in 200 meter IM (individual medley), 400 metre IM, 1500m freestyle and 100m backstroke. He also won three silver medals in the 200m breaststroke, 50m free and 100m free.

At the end of an exhausting event, held earlier this month in Victoria, he came fourth in his last event, the 200m free, by the closest of margins. He missed another medal by 0.02 seconds. Every other swim resulted in a podium finish.

“I was really surprised. I broke all of my personal bests,” said the Grade 8, who attends Archbishop Carney Secondary.

He attended provincials for the first time as an 11-year-old, and his best finish was seventh in the 100m freestyle, so this was a whole new experience.

His Seahorses coach could see the tremendous improvement in Migneault.

“He has put in a huge amount of work and sacrifice for a kid his age,” said David Geary. “He is doing really well and we hope that he can have more success and improvement at age group nationals in July.”

That event will be held in Calgary.

“His biggest strength is his ability to swim any event and any stroke at a high level,” added the coach. “Currently he is ranked in the top five in Canada for his age, for a few events.”

Migneault said practise is paying off. He swims eight times per week for two hours, and throws in some dryland training. He feels stronger, his endurance is better and he’s perfecting his technique.

His success and his high national standing has Migneault setting high goals. He wants a scholarship to swim at university, and even to compete at the Olympics.

For now, however, he moves up the age classes and the competition will get tougher, and he’s training hard to make sure he’s among the top 10 as he competes at the national championships.

• Fellow Seahorse swimmer Ellen Hayhoe also qualified for provincials in the women’s 14-15 age category and came 11th in the 50m breaststroke and 15th in the 100m breaststroke.