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Field of dreams

KGHS distance runner designs new cross country course

   King George High School senior and distance runner Ray Gamache has always loved the great outdoors. After he graduates his legacy will not be for his endurance as a top distance runner, but for the lasting impression of the newly designed cross-country course he will be completing before the month of June.
   Upon entering the course, runners will be confronted with a glorious view of forest terrain, made up of an old pine tree nursery. Unlike the current course, runners will have the benefit of avoiding oncoming traffic as they run through the contours of the course. Gamache has secured sponsorship from private donors and the Lions Club. One of the sponsors has donated the services of his excavating company. Gamache selected the sight because of the even paths and the unobstructed paths that are already present.
   “Running in the woods is much more exciting than running around in a circle,” Gamache said. “I enjoy the view of the rolling hills, which is something I can really have fun with.”
   Although the course will involve the use of a rototiller to uproot trees, grass and bushes, he believes construction will go relatively fast. The course is located in the rear of the new high school, with a distance of 3.1 miles. “Our current course suffers from erosion and its narrow at certain points, and whenever we’ve tried to hold an invitational most schools don’t want to come—because of the condition of the course,” Gamache said.
   The last time the Foxes hosted a District championship was in the late 1990’s. Most recently the King George School Board approved the cross-country project proposed by Gamache.
   Gamache has also gained the support of the entire cross-country Fox program. Cross- country head coach Jim Moyer and his assistant Cathy Binder volunteered to help mark the course for Gamache. “We want to start the cross-country meets at the new high school—not have to bring them over to what will be the Middle School,” coach Moyer said.
   In addition, various members of the team have also pitched in to help in the course design. In fact, the project has also become popular with his fellow boy scouts. While Gamache will earn the honor of Eagle Scout for the project, other members of his troop have offered to design escape routes for emergencies, should a runner trip and fall.
For the past three years Gamache has successfully represented his alma mater in both track & field [winter & spring] and during the fall as a cross-country runner. The new course will benefit the next generation of Fox country athlete, while Gamache will be attending Christopher Newport University in the Fall of 2009. He hopes to major in education, with an emphasis in field of science.
   From now and into the future of Fox cross-country running, the signature of Gamache will forever be embedded into the terrain that can be found within the tundra of the forest associated with King George High School.

Leonard M. Banks
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