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 Latest news
Apr 12, 2012 - Article in T&T on Steve LeBlanc to lead NB Team to Jeux de la Francophonie in Nice

LeBlanc named coach of Team N.B.

Steve LeBlanc can’t stop smiling when talking about the growth of track and field in New Brunswick.

Young athletes are being attracted to the sport like never before and they’re making their mark at provincial, national and international competitions.

LeBlanc, who has been coaching at l’Université de Moncton for five years and is the co-ordinator of high performance for Athletics New Brunswick, said yesterday for many years young athletes qualified for Legion nationals and that marked the end of their track and field careers.

Now, however, many continue to improve in the sport and go on to compete at junior and senior nationals. Some even develop into university and international competitors.

LeBlanc praised the athletes for their dedication.

He failed to mention the obvious. There are more highly-qualified and motivated coaches in New Brunswick than ever and the athletes are benefitting from their expertise.

Among those outstanding coaches is LeBlanc himself. He has been rewarded for his fine work by being named the head coach of New Brunswick’s athletics team for the seventh Jeux de la Francophone International, scheduled for Sept. 6-15, 2013 in Nice, France.

With some prodding, LeBlanc discussed the role coaches have played in the development of track and field in New Brunswick.

“We’ve been fortunate to get help from our funding parters with the government and the universities,” the Riverview resident said.

“There has been a renewed commitment to athletics at the Université de Moncton and we’re seeing good things happen at the University of New Brunswick, where they’ve always been strong on the cross-country side and now they’re investing more in athletics,” LeBlanc added.

“We’re also getting more top coaches involved in Saint John, Moncton and other areas. It’s a fun time to be involved in the sport in New Brunswick.”

LeBlanc, who will also serve as the team’s manager, was humbled by his selection.

“This is an excellent opportunity for our best athletes to obtain international experience at a major multi-sport championship,” the coach said.

“I look forward to working with athletes and coaches from across the province, looking at fielding our best ever team for this international competition.”

LeBlanc is not certain how large the New Brunswick team will be at the Francophonie — it will depending on funding.

However, Genevieve Lalonde of Moncton has already set qualifying standards for the 1,500-metre and 3,000-metre steeplechase while Mike LeBlanc of Riverview has set standards for the 100 and 200m and Caleb Jones of Saint John has qualified in the javelin.

“We’ve got a large group of other athletes who are about 80 or 90 per cent of their way to setting qualifying standards,” coach LeBlanc said.

“Potentially, we could have a very large group of qualifiers and the standards are high. These are world-class athletes being developed in New Brunswick and we’re proud of them all.”

There will also be a few paralympic events at the Francophonie. Discus thrower Joey Boudreau and wheelchair racer James Brace of Salisbury are closing in on qualifying for those events.

Gabriel LeBlanc, technical director for Athletics New Brunswick, applauded the decision to name Steve LeBlanc as head coach of the provincial team.

“Steve brings an incredible passion for our sport and has been coach for team Canada on numerous occasions,” Gabriel LeBlanc said.

“Most recently he was on the coaching staff for the 2010 IAAF World Junior Championships in Moncton. It is great to have a coach with Steve’s background to lead this in what could be New Brunswick strongest team ever.”

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Apr 12, 2012 - Steve LeBlanc named at NB Head Coach for Jeux de la Francophonie

Athletics New Brunswick is extremely pleased to announce that Steve LeBlanc of Riverview has been named the Head Coach of New Brunswick’s athletics team for the 7th Jeux de la Francophonie International. The games will be held in Nice, France from September 6th-15th in 2013.

Steve LeBlanc, who is currently Athletics New Brunswick High Performance Coordinator and Head Coach of L’Université de Moncton track and field team, brings an incredible amount of expertise to the program. He had this to say about his appointment, ‘‘It is my great pleasure to have been named as the head coach of the New Brunswick team for the 2013 Jeux de la Francophonie. This is an excellent opportunity for our best athletes to obtain international experience at a major multi-sport championship. I look forward to working with athletes and coaches from across the province, looking at fielding our best ever team for this international competition.’’

"Steve brings an incredible passion for our sport and has been coach for team Canada on numerous occasions. Most recently he was on the coaching staff for the 2010 IAAF World Junior Championships in Moncton.’’ said Gabriel LeBlanc, technical director for Athletics New Brunswick. ‘’With potential athletes such has Genevieve Lalonde (Moncton), Caleb Jones (Saint John), Jean Marc Doiron (Colette), Adam Gaudes (Fredericton), Michael LeBlanc (Riverview) and Barry Britt (Hampton), it is great to have a coach with Steve’s background to lead this in what could be New Brunswick strongest team ever", added LeBlanc.

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Information on qualification procedures and related programs will be coming out in the near future at: http://www.anb.ca/Programs/jeux-franc.php

About the games:

The Games of La Francophonie were created in 1987 during the Summit of La Francophonie in Quebec City. The mandate of the Comité international des Jeux de la Francophonie (CIJF), which reports to the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie (OIF), is to oversee the overall organization of the Games in the host country. The Games of La Francophonie are held every four years. A huge event for young people, the Games bring together hundreds of athletes and artists from across La Francophonie. In 2013, more than 3,000 participants from 48 delegations are expected to attend. Since the inception of the Games of La Francophonie, the Canadian delegation has consisted of three teams: Canada, Canada-New Brunswick and Canada-Quebec. Team Canada selects members from across the country, while Team Quebec and Team New Brunswick select members from their respective provinces. Selection is based on excellence, not on linguistic affiliation. Athletes and artists whose mother tongue is not French and who do not speak French may participate in the Games of La Francophonie.

Athletics New Brunswick (ANB) is the provincial organizing body for track and field, cross country running, race walking, and road racing. It is the official Branch of Athletics Canada.


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