The California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) track and field championships were held Saturday at Veterans Memorial Stadium with ideal weather conditions for spectators, but competitors say it held a factor in their performance.
The weather Saturday was at a comfortable high of 82 degrees with a breeze for fans to watch schools from the Clovis area such as Clovis East, Clovis North and Buchanan high schools. According to Christopher Caudillo, representing Clovis North, who placed first in the varsity boys 1600 meter, said as soon as the event started he noticed the amount of wind.
“I knew it was going to be windy all day and the moment I kind of found out it was windy I knew I wasn’t going to be able to stick to my original plan that I was really ready to do because I knew if I went straight from the gun going all out I wouldn’t have been able to take these guys,” Caudillo said.
Caudillo said that leading up to the competition he knew that he was going to have to focus on finding the best strategy to win. In doing so, he would listen to his pastor before competitions and listen to his sermons to help Caudillo get focused for the game.
“He gives me personal sermons about going into these races that just kind of make sure I know I always have God with me and all that good stuff with me before a race,” Caudillo said.
Representing Clovis East in girls shot put was Feyi Olukanni who took a different approach that helped her win first place Saturday night.
Olukanni said that going into competitions she does her best to avoid thinking of the day as an actual competition, a strategy that proved successful. Instead Olukanni said she focused on making sure her technique was down for the competition.
“I’m trying to not think about the actual competition and trying to take my mind away from it because I get nervous really easy. So I was trying to take my mind off things and calm down,” Olukanni said.
Grabbing the crowd’s attention toward the end of the night was the Clovis North girls varsity 1600 relay when Clovis North finished first after trailing behind the runner from Wilson High School- Long Beach.
The Clovis community cheered the team on when they were awarded their medals with team members Maya Cordoba, Takiya Cenci, Emerson Parks, Tatum Zinkin, Emma O’Neil and Hayden Craft and shared a moment of gratitude on the field.