Support4Sport

There's nothing better than affecting people through sport.

Daniel Worthington, Coach
Soccer Nova Scotia

Greg Myatt

Greg
Myatt
A parent’s love knows no bounds
Greg and Lucia
Community Program

When they were young, Cape Breton natives Greg Myatt and Lucia MacIssac were heavily involved in athletics. Both remembered their glory days on the high school track team with pride, and were eager for their own children to enjoy the same athletic opportunities. But over the passing years, the status of track and field had changed in Cape Breton and their once beloved sport was now largely neglected and heavily underfunded.
 
Rather than allowing these challenges to discourage their efforts, in true athletic spirit, Greg and Lucia set out to overcome the obstacles. They decided that the best way to ensure change was to take control of the reigns themselves, and in 2007 They became the newest co-chairs of the Track and Field Association of Cape Breton (TFACB).
 
In Greg’s first year with the TFACB, several of his athletes qualified to attend a regional competition in Mabou.
 
“I think this was a first for a junior high team in this neck of the woods,” he says. “And things took off from there.”
 
Suddenly, previously unknown athletes from Cape Breton were showing up at local meets and sweeping the scoreboards. The more they won, the more their communities took notice and came out to support the young competitors.
 
Interest in the sport was growing, with more youth participating than ever before. Greg and Lucia were thrilled by the TFACB’s success but with community resources running short, and many parents paying for expensive equipment out of their own pockets, the proud men recognized that they needed help.
 
Funding from the Support4Sport program has helped put the small island of Cape Breton on the map with regards to provincial track and field.
 
“Through funding we have obtained 90 per cent of the infrastructure and 50 per cent of the coaching we’d targeted,” Greg explains. “The TFACB felt this what was needed to be competitive on a provincial level and to grow the sport in Cape Breton.”
 
Since receiving the funding, the efforts of the TFACB have not gone unnoticed. They currently hold four provincial high school records, several top four provincials finishes at the high school level and eight Athletics Nova Scotia provincial records.
 
When the Cape Breton track and field athletes aren’t busy breaking records, they’re bringing home medals from across the country. So far they’ve won silver at the National Youth Track and Field Championships in Quebec in 2008 and gold in the 2009 Canada Games in Charlottetown. Recently, one of their own small-town athletes received an invitation to an elite training camp in Arizona for Olympic hopefuls.
 
“Cape Breton residents are thrilled with these results and these would not have happened without funding. From one meet per year, there are now three or four meets annually in the Cape Breton Regional Municipality, with an average of at least of 300 children involved,” says Greg.
 
The energy and excitement in the community is clearly infectious because former athletes have gone into schools to help the physical education teachers promote track and field.
 
Greg explains proudly that “approximately 20 individuals have achieved certification in track and field coaching.”
 
When Greg began his journey to improve the condition of track and field in Cape Breton, he just wanted his son to have a chance to try the sport the way he had remembered it. Well his son took the bait and Geoff has gone further in track and field than his father ever anticipated.
 
“Geoff Myatt, Cathy's and my son, has taken the effort by our small group in Sydney to successes we never dreamed of,” says the proud father. “Who would have thought...from throwing a discus across a small field in Cape Breton, to ranking third in the country.”
 
Greg and Lucia have much more than they set out to. The Cape Breton track and field team is now well respected, and these parents have experienced the joy of watching their children’s athletic journeys. The spirit of athleticism is alive and well in Cape Breton.

Location

Sydney, NS
Canada
46° 8' 11.0076" N, 60° 11' 48.6168" W

Location

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