Red Deer’s Jeremiah Lauzon named to Canada’s U20 Pan Am Games team

There is no slowing down Jeremiah Lauzon.

The budding Red Deer track and field star shone brightly early this month when he broke his previous best time in the 200-metre race in Calgary.

His new best time of 20.90 seconds at that meet is the fastest U20 time in Canada this year and top 10 among all 200m runners.

Lauzon, 19, already hit the qualifying standard for the U20 Pan American Games earlier this summer with a 21.20, but his finish at the CALTAF Track Classic on June 16 fully announced his presence.

This week, the sprinter was also officially invited to represent Canada at those games in San Jose, Puerto Rico from July 19-21.

“When he hit that success, his mindset changed. He then started the ‘I believe’ attitude as opposed to ‘I dream’. Especially the 20.90… he started believing,” said Ron Hewer, Lauzon’s coach with the Red Deer Titans Track Club.

The last Red Deer product to compete internationally on the track was Don Bruno, who raced for Canada at the 1999 Pan Am Games in the 4x400m.

The mild-mannered and humble Lauzon, who has only been training with Hewer for two years, is finally starting to realize his potential. He has already far surpassed his personal expectations this season, one of which was three medals at the Alberta Schools Athletic Association Track and Field Championships. He has been forced to readjust his goals going forward.

Those new goals now include a finals appearance at the U20 Pan American Games in Puerto Rico. The dream would be a medal.

“We’ve been talking a lot about his preparation and I think because of his personality, it’s going to be water off a duck’s back. I think he’s really going to go into this and treat it like another track meet. I think the Mexico experience this year, is going to pay dividends,” Hewer said.

“With that 20.9, I think he now realizes he belongs on the world stage. He’s going to get in those blocks with a lot more confidence than he would have with a 21.2.”

From there, he will come home, only to turn around and compete at the Canadian National Track and Field Championships in Montreal, Quebec from July 25-28. All and all a busy summer for the Red Deer product.

Email sports tips to Byron Hackett

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