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Central Alberta’s Parker Thompson Takes Double Podiums In His First Weekend of Sports Car Racing

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3 minute read

April 8, 2019

BARBER MOTORSPORTS PARK, ALABAMA

Touting #DriveAnything, Parker Thompson got behind the wheel of the #3 JDX Racing – Hertz – Byers Porsche GT3 Cup Car this weekend for his first experience in fender-to-fender racing action at the 2019 IMSA Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA season opener.

“… I know Barber Motorsports Park very well with my background in open wheel cars, but this was a huge learning weekend for me…”

As an experienced open-wheel race car driver, Thompson’s debut in the series generated significant intrigue about his potential in sports car racing. The final results did not disappoint. At the conclusion of each race, Thompson found himself celebrating on the podium. Third-place finishes in both race one and race two, position him 3rd overall in the GT3 Cup Challenge USA Championship standings.

Both races saw hard battles and close quarter racing that is characteristic of the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge, but race two was particularly close. Thompson’s #3 car took damage on lap four, destroying the front splitter and significantly challenging his pace from that point forward.

As a result, Thompson found himself on the defence against sophomore drivers Maxwell Root, and JDX Racing teammate, Jeff Kingsley. Root showed tremendous pressure, often going side-by-side with Thompson on the winding road course, but he never managed to execute a full pass. Root would eventually collide with lapped traffic, leaving Thompson to defend Kingsley alone. The battle between the two young Canadians lasted right to the checkered flag, with Thompson managing to hold his spot and earn the final podium position.

With this outstanding result, Thompson is excited about future opportunities to race in the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge, but remains focused on the Indy Pro 2000 Championship. After winning the opening two races at the season opener in St. Petersburg last month, Thompson holds a significant lead in the Championship points standings.

“… I know Barber Motorsports Park very well with my background in open wheel cars, but this was a huge learning weekend for me. I think I learned more about racing in the last four days than I have in the past year! I was driving a car that I’d never driven before; I had a new team and new crew behind me and the JDX Racing guys were just awesome. We all gelled really quickly and the atmosphere and communication under the tent was outstanding. The #3/JDX Racing/Hertz/Byers Porsche got better with every change and my understanding of what it takes to drive this car fast also grew. I’m ecstatic with our performance this weekend, but I’m equally as hungry for more results…”  – Parker Thompson

Click below to learn more about Parker Thompson Racing.

 

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Wandler temporarily replaces Walton as RDC Queens Volleyball Head Coach

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News Release from Red Deer College Athletics

With Head Coach Talbot Walton taking an indefinite medical leave of absence, a familiar face will guide the historic Red Deer College Queens Volleyball team into the Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference (ACAC) 2021/2022 season.

RDC Queens Assistant Coach Chris Wandler has assumed the head coaching duties of the three time national champion Queens Volleyball team.

RDC Queens Volleyball Head Coach Talbog Walton on indefinite medical leave

“It is unfortunate that Talbot won’t be able to begin the season doing what he loves, which is coaching his promising group of student-athletes, but at this time it is important for him to take the time that he needs to recuperate and take care of his health,” says Sharon Hamilton, Dean of School of Community, Wellness and Health. “I know the entire College community wishes Talbot well in his recovery and we all look forward to seeing him back on the sidelines coaching the Queens when his medical team deems appropriate.”

Wandler brings a wealth of coaching experience, expertise, and an important familiarity with the student-athletes and RDC Queens Volleyball program. He was an assistant to Walton with the Queens from 2003 to 2012, and again in the 2019/2020 season. He temporarily took over as the head coach of the RDC Queens Volleyball team from 2016/2017 to 2018/2019 and guided them to a pair of ACAC bronze medals. Wandler was also named the ACAC 2018/2019 Women’s Volleyball South Coach of the Year.

Under Walton’s leadership, and in conjunction with other assistant coaches, Wandler has helped build the Queens into national championship contenders, once again. During 2019/2020, the RDC Queens rolled to an impressive 21-3 regular season record, finishing only two points behind the first place Briercrest College Clippers (22-2). At the ACAC Women’s Volleyball Championship in Medicine Hat, the Queens pushed the Clippers to five sets (25-21, 20-25, 25-20, 23-25, and 12-15) in the final and earned a silver medal.

Then at the Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) 2020 Women’s Volleyball National Championship in Quebec, the Queens exacted some revenge on the Clippers, downing them in five sets (24-26, 25-23, 21-25, 25-14 and 15-12) in the bronze semi-final. The RDC Queens defeated the Fanshawe Falcons in four sets (25-14, 25-17, 18-25, and 25-21) to win national bronze.

With a complementary blend of experienced, and young, enthusiastic student-athletes, the Red Deer College Queens are excited and poised to host a successful ACAC 2022 Women’s Volleyball Championship at the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre, with their sights on eventually pushing for their fourth national title.

For more information about RDC Athletics, including Queens Volleyball, please visit: rdcathletics.ca.

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King of the Kings is undisputed King (of National College Gaming Challenge)

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From RDC Communications

RDC student-athlete is king of CCAA Gaming Challenge

When it comes to basketball, Red Deer College Kings guard Tyronn King has demonstrated an impressive skillset beyond the court at the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre.

Over four weeks of online competition, King had a perfect 10-0 record in the NBA 2K Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) Gaming Challenge, using PlayStation 4. This unblemished performance earned him first place.

With the absence of Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference (ACAC) competition this year due to COVID-19, King embraced the opportunity to participate in this event created by the CCAA in coordination with Uniting Gamers.

It was definitely a great experience – fun, and something competitive to do, especially right now with COVID-19 going on,” said King, who rose to the top among 32 participants from CCAA member post- secondary institutions. “The people hosting it were great. They communicated well with the players and had everything set up nicely.”

In order to continue advancing to the next round, King had to win the best of three games. It was randomly determined which player received first choice of current NBA teams. Participants could not select the same team and King had two squads that he relied on.

I always picked either the Brooklyn Nets or the Milwaukee Bucks every game of the tournament,” said King, who identified the Nets as his favourite team. “I didn’t want to take a chance of losing one game of the tournament, so I made sure I always came out with fire power.”

King faced Christopher Graham, a setter on The King’s University Eagles Men’s Volleyball team, in the quarter-final. The RDC Legal Assistant student from Toronto swept the series 2-0, with scores of 61-57 and 58-53 over Graham. In the semi-final, King persisted past Glynn Willis-Paris, a member of the St. Clair Saints Men’s Basketball team, 48-44 and 50-47, to solidify a berth in the championship.

In the two rounds prior to the final, I played a couple of guys who were really good and they put up a fight. In some of the games, I was down in the fourth quarter,” said King, who helped guide his RDC Basketball team to the postseason in 2019/2020. “They gave me a run for my money, but when games are close and competitive, that’s when they are the most fun.”

King felt those hard-fought games adequately prepared him for the championship against Ryan Farrell of the University of New Brunswick Saint John Seawolves Men’s Volleyball team.

The two previous games were championship games to me. Once I got to the finals, I felt ready,” explained King. “In the last two games, I was able to put my bench [players] in fairly early and won 57-43 and 54-42.

While balancing academics and training, King’s hobby of playing basketball video games was a recipe for enjoyment and success in the CCAA Gaming Challenge.

In my free-time, I play [NBA] 2K, so that was my preparation,” said King. “It was pretty cool, knowing that I had a game each week, and being out of physical competition for so long, I looked forward to the days when I played.”

The talented RDC student-athlete, who finished second in team scoring last year with 18.8 points per game, recommends this type of gaming challenge to others.

Overall, it was fun and I would encourage anyone who plays 2K for fun or competitively to get involved in one of these tournaments,” said King, who will enter his fifth year of eligibility when ACAC competition resumes. “It’s definitely exciting and something to do during these COVID-19 times when there’s not much competition going on.”

For winning first place in the CCAA Gaming Challenge on March 18, King will receive a memorable gift.

It is a customized ring from Jostens, so that’s pretty cool,” he said.

As members within RDC Athletics and the ACAC anxiously await the safe resumption of competition, King has been dedicated to his fitness and staying connected to his teammates and coaches.

From a physical standpoint, I’ve been trying to stay in shape. When gyms weren’t open, I trained at home and went for runs,” said King, who is a 2019/2020 ACAC Men’s Basketball South Second All- Conference team member. “As a team, we connect a lot via Zoom for weekly meetings that our coach organizes. Now, we are starting to get back in the gym, so it feels great.”

In the absence of traditional sports this year, the CCAA Gaming Challenge was administered by the CCAA and Uniting Gamers in an effort to encourage connections among Canadian learners, in a fun and competitive virtual environment.

More information about the NBA 2K CCAA Gaming Challenge, including the results, is available online.

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