Jonathan Chenier, a 15-year-old athlete, became one of Canada’s top young track and cross-country running stars. The South Simcoe/Dufferin Track and Field Club member was arguably the best middle distance and cross country runner in the country in his age group. Chenier, a member of the South Simcoe/Duferin Track and Field Club, had another impressive year in 1994. The Grade 10 student at St. Joseph’s High School gave up participation in hockey and high school basketball after the spring of 1994 to focus on his burgeoning ability as a runner. The sacrifice paid big dividends. He followed up an outstanding year in 1993 with an equally impressive season in 1994. During the indoor track and field season from January to April of 1994, Chenier set an age group record in the 600-metres at the Hamilton Spectator Games (one of two gold medals there); took the midget 800 and 1,500-metres titles at both the Ontario Legion and the Georgian Bay Secondary School championships; won the 1,500 and 3,000-metre gold medals at the Ontario Track and Field Association championships; and won three gold medals in the Quebec Indoor championships. Outdoors, he was virtually unbeatable. Chenier won three titles (800, 1,500 and 3,000-metres) at the Georgian Bay high school championships, took gold in the 1,500 and 3,000 at the Ontario high school, Ontario Legion and Ontario/Quebec championships, and won the 3,000-metres at the Ontario Track and Field Association championships. To top it all off, he won the Canadian Legion midget 800 and 3,000metre gold medals, and was second in the 1,500. During the indoor and outdoor season, Chenier also was a member of two gold medal-winning 4×800-metres relay teams at OTFA events. In cross-country, Chenier won both the Georgian Bay and Ontario high school midget championships.
Other nominee for the 1994 Athlete of the Year was:
Chad Cradock’s accomplishments in the swimming pool are probably better known in many U.S. cities and towns than they are in his home town. But make no mistake, this 21-year-old freestyle specialist at the University of Maryland-Baltimore County is one of Canada’s top up-and-coming young swimmers. Cradock’s school competed in the Eastern Intercollegiate Athletic Association (part of the Big South Conference) against some of the top American Universities, Notre Dame, Western Kentucky, Southern Illinois, Duke, North Carolina State, and Yale to name a few. During the 1993-94 swimming season, in dual meets against those schools and others, Cradock, then a freshman, was beaten only once in his specialty, the 200-yard freestyle. In December, Cradock competed at the U.S. Open Swimming Championships, a large international meet. He placed fifth in the 400m freestyle, 10th in the 1,500 m freestyle and 17th in the 200 m freestyle. He also competed at the U.S. nationals in the 400 and 200 m freestyle events, though he did not place among the leaders. At the 1994 conference championships, Cradock was third in the 1,500 m freestyle and 12th in the 200. Cradock holds three school records, in the 200, 500 and 1,650 yard events. He was selected as an Academic All-American for combining excellence n both athletics and the classroom.