NATIONAL CHAMPION: Qualicum Beach’s Thomas Riva crosses the line first in the men’s 1

Qualicum Beach athlete is a national track champion

Thomas Riva won the 1,500 m event at National Track and Field Championships in Edmonton

Qualicum Beach’s Thomas Riva ran his way into the number one spot at the Canadian National Track and Field Championships in Edmonton, Alberta last week, earning a gold medal in the 1,500 metre event. (See Riva crossing the finish line on the front page.)

Riva, who just finished his senior season with the University of Victoria Vikings track and field team, captured the gold with a time of four minutes, 6.16 seconds.

He edged out Charles Philibert-Thiboutot of Quebec, who finished second with a time of four minutes, 6.58 seconds.

“It was pretty thrilling,” Riva said after his victory.

“To be honest, it was pretty much a blur. I knew that when I was close to the line it was going to be a close finish because it was a very tactical race that everyone had ran.”

“Everyone in the group saved it all for the last lap and it made for an exciting finish.”

With the nationals finished, Riva is home for a brief rest before boarding a flight to Europe, where he will race twice in Belgium before exploring other racing options on the continent.

“I’ll race twice in Belgium,” Riva said. “I’m going to run the 1,500 and I might even run the 800 metre event while I’m there too.”

“We’ll see how things go; I’m going to just play it by ear. There’s a few more options for races while I’m in Europe too but so far it’s just the two races in Belgium that I’m working towards for now.”

Capping off an excellent career at UVic, Riva was named the Male Athlete of the Year to finish his fifth year there.

During his time as a member of the Viking Riva also earned Canadian Interuniversity Sport’s (CIS) second team all-Canadian and Canada West first team all-star in cross country.

In track, he earned Canada West male athlete of the year, Canada West first team all-star, CIS first team all-Canadian, a bronze medal in the 1,000m (Canada west) and a gold in the 1,000m (CIS).

Riva also won gold in the Canada west 1,500 m event. In the 4x400m, Riva earned bronze (CIS) and in the 4x800m, earned Canada west gold and silver (CIS).

All of that was done in his fifth and final season with the Vikings.

“It’s been great,” Riva said. “Everything I’ve done has been building towards this and now that I’ve won the gold in the 1,500 at nationals, I’m feeling very positive about the 1,500 going forward.”

Riva will continue running leading up to the nationals again next year, where he hopes to earn himself a spot on the Canadian Olympic team.

“That’s the big goal,” Riva said. “I’d like to be able to continue this great run and have another good year next year leading in to the Olympics.”

“If I can keep it up and earn myself a good enough qualifying time for the 1,500, hopefully that will land me a spot on the Olympic team.”

Just Posted

Search is on for parties to build $10.7M Bowser sewage project

Further investigation of land disposal option rejected by RDN board

Parksville council won’t ban single-use plastic bags

Politicians vote 6-1 against proposed bylaw

Qualicum Beach doles out Community Awards

Jacobson is Citizen of the Year; new mayor Wiese named top newsmaker

Finalists announced for annual Business Achievement Awards

Parksville & District Chamber of Commerce honours individuals, businesses

Parksville artist aims to produce zero waste with creations, business

Margie Preninger even dabbled with dryer lint years ago

Sell regulated heroin to curb B.C.’s overdose problem: report

B.C. Centre on Substance Use points to organized crime and money-laundering as contributing factors

Trudeau tells Canadians to listen to clerk in SNC-Lavalin matter

Privy Council clerk Michael Wernick delivered a blunt assessment at the House of Commons justice

Mueller report looming, new attorney general in hot seat

Robert Mueller is required to produce a confidential report to pursue or decline prosecutions

Regulator’s report unlikely to settle Trans Mountain pipeline expansion battle

The Trans Mountain pipeline will remain a controversial topic both in the political ring and out

B.C. woman shares story of abuse with church officials ahead of Vatican summit

Leona Huggins was the only Canadian in the gathering ahead of a historic summit at the Vatican

One dead, two seriously injured in Hwy 4 crash west of Port Alberni

A man has died following a single-vehicle collision west of Port Alberni… Continue reading

Galchenyuk scores in OT as Coyotes edge Canucks 3-2

Vancouver manages single point as NHL playoff chase continues

HBC shuttering Home Outfitters across Canada

North America’s oldest retailer is revamping its various stores to improve profitability

Peter Tork, Monkees’ lovable bass-guitar player, dies at 77

Tork, Micky Dolenz, David Jones and Michael Nesmith formed the made-for-television rock band

Most Read