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Quebec’s Olivier Desmeules breaks 37-year-old Canadian record

Olivier Desmeules of Quebec City clocked a speedy 1:16.63 over 600m to set the Canadian U23 record

Olivier Desmeules penn State Photo by: Olivier Desmeules/Facebook

As the indoor track and field season kicks off for many collegiate athletes, Olivier Desmeules of Quebec City started his season with a bang on Saturday at the Penn State Intrasquad Meet, shattering the men’s U23 Canadian 600m record.

Desmeules clocked a record-breaking 1:16.63 (solo) to break Brian Thompson’s previous U23 600m record of 1:17.06 from the 1985 Canadian Indoor Championships in Sherbrooke, Que. 

The 22-year-old is an up-and-coming middle-distance runner at Penn State University, specializing in the 800m. Desmeules won bronze in the 800m at the 2022 Canadian Track and Field Championships in June, behind world 800m medallist Marco Arop and Canadian 800m record holder Brandon McBride.

The 600m is a rare middle-distance running event that is only commonly run in the NCAA Big Ten Conference during the indoor track and field season.

The head coach of Penn State’s Track and Field program, John Gondak, said Desmeules’ time was a top-five 600m result in school history, joining elite company Isaiah Harris and former world relay champion Casimir Loxsom.

Desmeules ran one season with Laval Rouge et Or in 2020-2021 before transferring to Penn State University in 2021. The Penn State track and field program is known for producing some of the best middle-distance runners in the NCAA.

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