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Runners get final tune-up at Chub Lake Meet

The exhibition race featured 11 teams from across the Northland.

Runners begin race
Runners from 11 Northland schools take off from the starting line during the Chub Lake cross country meet held Thursday, Aug. 25, 2022 at Chub Lake Park in Carlton.
Jake Przytarski / Cloquet Pine Journal
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CARLTON — Over the course of the past week, Esko senior Ben Meysembourg managed to take his training for the upcoming cross country season to new heights: 9,600 feet above sea level, to be exact.

“I was training (in Colorado) for a week prior to this. I just came back about two days ago,” Meysembourg said. “The highest I got up to was about 9,600 feet, and I stayed about 7,000-9,000 feet the whole time.”

The altitude training proved highly beneficial on race day at Chub Lake Park Thursday, Aug. 25, as Meysembourg was the first runner to cross the finish line in the annual event which featured participants from 11 Northland schools.

Racer crosses finish-line
Esko senior Ben Meysembourg prepares to cross the finish line during the Chub Lake Meet held Thursday, Aug. 25, 2022, at Chub Lake Park in Carlton.
Jake Przytarski / Cloquet Pine Journal

Though the meet was un-timed and technically an exhibition race, Meysembourg said the early tune-up offered him a chance to map out how he will approach his training in the weeks ahead.

“My coach (Jerimy Hallsten) wanted me to see what kind of time I would run so he could check my intervals, and decide what my training for the future would be,” Meysembourg explained.

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Through the first two laps of the course, Meysembourg followed closely behind fellow 2021 state meet participant Miles Fischer of Cloquet before eventually pulling ahead in the third and final lap, and creating additional separation in the final stretch.

The promising start for Meysembourg bodes well in his quest to reach numerous career milestones this season.

“My goals would most likely be to place at state … and then just make my school proud and maybe break a school record or two,” Meysembourg said.

On the girls’ side, Cloquet ninth grader Brijette LaCore was the first member of the Lumberjacks to cross the finish line on Thursday. Like Meysembourg, LaCore has high hopes for this season after a strong showing as an eighth-grader last year.

Runner approaches finish-line
Cloquet freshman Brijette LaCore approaches the finish line during the Chub Lake Meet held Thursday, Aug. 25, 2022, at Chub Lake Park in Carlton.
Jake Przytarski / Cloquet Pine Journal

“I’m going to try and make it to state as a team or individual,” LaCore said. “Last year I was one (spot) away so it really motivates me to keep going.”

For LaCore, Thursday’s meet offered her an opportunity to put her endurance to the test in preparation for the season ahead.

“I was trying to really push myself (and) see how far I could go,” LaCore said. “I knew I could slow down if I needed to, but I just wanted to see how far I could push myself.”

LaCore and the Lumberjacks, along with many of the schools competing in Thursday’s meet, will be back in action on Wednesday, Aug. 31 in Virginia for the second meet of the season.

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Jake Przytarski is a reporter for the Cloquet Pine Journal covering a mix of news and sports.
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