Peace Country Classic/ ASG Trials Track Meet slated for May 14

15PCC5000m

A quartet of Grande Prairie’s fastest contest the 5000m at the 2015 Peace Country Classic. Pictured left to right are Eric Maritnek, Jamie Wigmore, Mirelle Martens, and Brandon Wladyko

Registration for the  2016 Peace Country Classic on Saturday, May 14, Grande Prairie’s annual all comer’s track meet, is now open.

This year’s Classic is actually three different meets in one

  • The Grande Prairie Kid’s Meet for children in Grades 1 to 3 and Grades 4 to 6.
  • The NW Zone Alberta Summer Games Track and Field Trials for Peace Country residents ages 13 to 17 who wish to try out for the Alberta Summer Games taking place in Leduc, July 14-17.
  • The Peace Country Classic All Comers Meet for everyone else – athletes of all ages and abilities are encouraged to enter.

 New this year!

We’ve simplified things by aligning our PCC categories (i.e. Midget, Youth, Open) with standard Athletics Canada categories and specifications.  Also for your convenience, we will be using online registration through Trackie.Reg (Note:  You have the option of paying online OR paying by cash or cheque on the day of the meet.)

Complete information about the meet, including schedule of events and registration instructions, is available on the Peace Country Wolves Athletics Club site (www.wolvesac.com).

 

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Redemption! Wolves Indoor Tracksters Come Up Big At Awards Banquet

Hannah Caldwell and Josh Facts Malmsten crushed the No-Hands-Oreo-Eating Challenge at the 2016 ACAC Indoor Track Champs

Hannah Caldwell and Josh Facts Malmsten crushed the No-Hands-Oreo-Eating Challenge at the 2016 ACAC Indoor Track Champs

It took until the awards banquet after the meet had ended, but the GPRC Wolves managed to hit the podium on Saturday at the ACAC Indoor Track Championships in Calgary.

In the always competitive No-Hands-Oreo-Eating-Contest, Josh Malmsten managed a 2nd place finish, while rookie Hannah Caldwell came out of nowhere to nab third place. Based on their combined performance, the Wolves earned the coveted right to eat first at the buffet.

Earlier in the day, the Wolves men finished the meet with 12 points, good for fifth place overall. The Wolves women placed sixth with 8 points.

The Wolves Women's 4 x 400 team parlayed these game faces into a 6 th place finish

The Wolves Women’s 4 x 400 team parlayed these game faces into a 6 th place finish

Brandon Wladyko led the way for the locals with a 4th place finish in the 3000m, narrowly missing the bronze by 0.5 seconds. Wladyko recorded a personal best time of 9:33 in the race. He also ran a personal best time of 4:33 in placing 6th in the 1500m.

Other Wolves Athletes scoring points included

Josh Malmsten – 1000m, 2 points  600m, 1 point

Kirsten Manz – 300m, 3 points.  600m, 2 points

Women’s 4 x 400m – 3 points

Concordia University of Edmonton won the Men’s team title ; MacEwan University took the women’s crown.

The ACAC meet marked the final competition in a Wolves singlet for graduating runners Kirsten Manz and Emily Whalen. Whalen marked the occasion with a win in Heat 4 of the 300m prelims.

Full results are posted at www.calgarytrackcouncil.com/ACAC2016

Elsewhere on Saturday, former Wolves runners Mirelle Martens (Trinity Western) and Joren Manz (University of Alberta) took part in the Canada West University Indoor Track Meet in Saskatoon.

Martens won gold in the 3000m and picked up a silver in the 1500m. Manz also had a silver as part of the U of A’s 4 x 800m relay team. Both athletes qualified for CIS Nationals in two weeks.

 

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Wolves Track Teams Fifth and Sixth at ACAC 2 Meet

Joel DeMarcke

Joel DeMarcke ran the lead off leg for the Wolves fourth place 4 x 400m relay at the 2016 Running Room Indoor Challenge

The GPRC Wolves Indoor Track team was out in full force on Saturday, contesting ACAC Meet #2 – The Running Room Indoor Challenge – at the Edmonton Garrison.

Fifth-year runner Kirsten Manz recorded the best finish among the locals, a 4th place standing in the Women’s 600m in a personal best time of 1:48.  The top male GPRC result was a 6th place run by Brandon Wladyko in the Men’s 3000m. Wladyko, and teammates Joel DeMarcke, Josh Malmstem, and Kyle Murray also  combined for a 4th place finish in the Men’s 4 x 400m.

Collectively, the Wolves men placed 5th in the team standings; the Wolves women were 6th.  Lethbridge College won both both the men’s and women’s titles.

Next up for Wolves Indoor Track is the ACAC Championships in Calgary on Feb. 26 and 27

Women’s Results WomensResultsCopy of 2016 Nike Indoor Challenge Results Program

Men’s Results MenResults2016 Nike Indoor Challenge Results Program

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Wolves Men 5th at ACAC 1 Indoor Track Meet

Josh Malmsten placed 6th in the 600 and 7th in the 1500 (PR) at ACAC 1 in Lethbridge

Josh Malmsten placed 6th in the 600 and 7th in the 1500 (PR) at ACAC 1 in Lethbridge

A token squad of two GPRC athletes contested ACAC Indoor Track 1 – The Kodiak Open in Lethbridge on Saturday.

Josh Malmsten led the way for the locals with 6th place finish in the 600m and a 7th place finish, with a new personal best time of 4:40.08, in the 1500m.

Brandon Wladyko fared one spot better than Malmsten in the 1500m (6th place),and also finished 8th in the 600m.

Collectively, the Wolves men placed 5th out of 7 teams in the team placings.

Next up, a full squad of Wolves runners will contest ACAC 2 – The Concordia Open in Edmonton on Feb. 6.

Full results of the 2015 Kodiak Open 2016 Kodiaks Indoor Track Open RESULTS

 

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300m Records Pummeled at Rick Scott Open

A very excited Chris Nelissen (left) accepts the Athlete of the Meet Award (or Most Outstanding Accounting Student?) from meet director Bill Corcoran at the 2016 Rick Scott Open

A very excited Chris Nelissen (left) accepts the Athlete of the Meet Award (or Most Outstanding Accounting Student?) from meet director Bill Corcoran at the 2016 Rick Scott Open

(Revised Jan. 10, 2015)

A pair of meet records in the women’s 300m highlighted a spectacular fifth annual Rick Scott Open Indoor Track Meet at the Crosslink Fieldhouse on Saturday.

In heat one of the 300m, Kirsten Manz lowered her own 2015 meet record by 4/10ths of a second, covering the distance in 50.0.  However, the new standard didn’t last long as Jamie Wigmore set yet another new meet standard in heat three with a time of 49.0.

Wigmore also lowered her own women’s meet record in 800m to 2:25.1.

Other winners included:

Men’s  800m        Josh Malmsten     2:24.4

Men’s 300m        Chris Nelissen  43.4

Full Results 16RickScottOpenResults

Next up for local indoor track athletes is ACAC Indoor Meet #1 in Lethbridge next weekend.

 

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2015 Wolves Athletics Club in Review

As 2015 comes to a close, it’s time for our annual Year in Review.  Here are the top ten notable stories of last year:

#10 – PRs Galore in Spring Road Races

Six WAC athletes = 4 wins, 1 second, and 1 5th at the 2015 DHT Press Run

Six WAC athletes = 4 wins, 1 second, and 1 5th at the 2015 DHT Press Run

Club athletes distinguished themselves in a number of road races in 2015, but two races in particular stand out.

On April 26 in Victoria, three WAC women went sub 40 minutes in the TC 10 km.  Mirelle Martens led the way for the locals with a 36:39 clocking while Jackie Benning (39:37 ) and Amanda Patteson (39:57 ) also averaged sub-4 minutes for 10 consecutive kilometres.

A few weeks later at the Daily Herald Tribune Press Run in Grande Prairie on May 23, WAC runners won 4 out of 6 titles.  Hayden Hollowell (1/2 marathon, 1:18), Brandon Wladlyko (10 km, 38:00), Jackie Benning (Women’s 5 km, 19:11) and Amanda Patteson (Women’s 10km, 42:11) all took the top spots in their respective races and each won a sweet pair of shoes to boot … no pun intended …

#9 – Major Awards for WAC Coaches and Athletes

Wolves XC 2015 Academic Team of the Year at GPRC

Wolves XC 2015 Academic Team of the Year at GPRC

In February, March, and April, Club members were named winners of a number of provincial and regional awards.

In February, Bill Corcoran was named 2014 Athletics Alberta Volunteer of the Year and Mirelle Martens was awarded 2014 Athletics Alberta Junior Women’s XC Runners of the Year.

At the NW Alberta Sport Development Centre Banquet in March, Martens was named Female Athlete of the Year, Corcoran won the High Performance Coach of the Year, and the GPRC Women’s XC team was awarded the Female Team of the Year.

At the GPRC Festival of Gold Awards Banquet in April, Martens captured the GPRC Female Athlete of the Year and the Cross Country team topped the table for the highest Academic Average.  The ACAC also honoured Martens as the 2014-15 Female Athlete of the Year in All Sports.

#8 – High Schoolers Impress at ASAA Provincial Track Champs

Brittany Duvall (far left) and Kailey Bratland (far right) both notched top 5 performances at the 2015 ASAA Provincial Track Meet in Lethbridge

Brittany Duvall (far left) and Kailey Bratland (far right) both notched top 5 performances at the 2015 ASAA Provincial Track Meet in Lethbridge

WAC high schoolers had a great year in 2015.  The dynamic duo of Kailey Bratland and Brittany Duvall recorded their best-ever provincials finishes at the 2015 ASAA High School Track and Field Championships in Lethbridge in June.

Kailey recorded a time of 11:29 in the 3000m for fifth, while Brit also finished fifth, clocking 2:27 for the 800m.  The pair also placed seventh (Brit) and eighth (Kailey) in the 15000m at Provincials.

#7 – WAC Runners Contest AC Nationals Track Champs In Droves

Hayden Hollowell established two personal best times at the Tracktown Classic in Edmonton on July 11/12. 2015

Hayden Hollowell established a slew of PRs in 2015 and took part in his first Senior Nationals track championship

The Athletics Canada Junior and Senior National Track and Field Championships took place in Edmonton in early July, and a Club record four athletes took part in the national meet.

Mirelle Martens had the best result, winning a bronze medal in Junior Women’s 5000m.  Martens also placed 8th in the Junior Women’s 3000m.

In the Senior meet, Jamie Wigmore and Jess Baraskewich contested the Women’s 800m.  Both exited the competition in Round 1; Wigmore placed 27th overall, while Baraskewich was 28th.  Hayden Hollowell also took part in the meet, placing 27th in the Men’s 1500m.

#6 – Martens and Benson Represent Canada in International XC

An exhausted Mirelle Martens at the end of the Junior Women's race at the 2015 World Cross Country Running Championships

An exhausted Mirelle Martens at the end of the Junior Women’s race at the 2015 World Cross Country Running Championships

Well, the individual results weren’t as good as they had hoped for, but Mirelle Martens and former WAC athlete Fiona Benson got some great international experience in February and March as members of Team Canada.

In February, the pair were in Colombia for the 2015 Pan Am Cross Country Running Championships.  Martens placed 24th in the Junior Women’s 5 km, while Benson was 13th in the Senior Women’s 6 km event.  Both athletes received team medals, as Canada won the Junior Women’s race and was second in the Senior Women’s run.

A month later, the pair again donned Team Canada gear and contested the 2015 IAAF World Cross Country Championships in China.  Both ladies had tough days.  Martens started too fast, fading from 50th in 94th in the last lap of the 6 km course.  Benson’s race followed a similar pattern; she ended up 68th in Senior Women’s 8 km.

#5 Wolves Women Dominate ACAC Indoors

2015 ACAC Indoor 4 x 400m Women's Champs (left to right) Jackie Benning, Amanda Patteson, Kirsten Manz, Jamie Wigmore (photobomber) Emily Whalen

2015 ACAC Indoor 4 x 400m Women’s Champs (left to right) Jackie Benning, Amanda Patteson, Kirsten Manz, Jamie Wigmore (photobomber) Emily Whalen

In Fall 2014, the GPRC women dominated both the ACAC and CCAA Cross Country Championships in a record-setting fashion.  In the team’s final college competition, the 2015 ACAC Indoor Track Championship in Edmonton, the team was equally as impressive.

The Wolves women won 5 out of 6 races and set a new record in the 4 x 400m relay.  Individual medalist included Jamie Wigmore (2 gold, 1 bronze), Mirelle Martens (2 gold) and Jackie Benning (2 silver).  Wigmore, Benning, Amanda Patteson, and Kirstin Manz combined to win the relay gold.

#4 GP Hosts the Province – ASAA High School XC Provincials

15ASAAKaileyBrit

Finishing 9th and 11th respectively in the Senior Women’s race, Kailey Bratland and Britney Duvall represented the Peace Country proudly at the 2015 Alberta High School Cross Country Championships at Wapiti Nordic

In 2005, the Wapiti Nordic Ski Trails hosted the ASAA Provincial High School XC Running Championships for the first time.  Ten years later in October of this year, it was time for the re-match.

In the 2005 race, only two Peace Country athletes cracked the top 15 in any of the six races.  In 2015, five Peace Country athletes finished in the top 15 and another placed 21st.  The leading area athletes included Troy Morgan (9th Junior Men), Kailey Bratland (9th Senior Women), Brittany Duvall (11th Senior Women), Brandon Tufford (12th Junior Men), Eric Nooy (15th Intermediate Men), and Lee Gillette (21st Senior Men.)

#3 Wiggie Crushes XC Season

Jamie Wigmore cruises to the win at the 2015 ACAC XC Running Championships

Jamie Wigmore cruises to the win at the 2015 ACAC XC Running Championships

Fourth-year runner Jamie Wigmore returned  to GPRC for a final season with some lofty goals.  After finishing second in the past two ACAC Championships and fourth in the 2014 CCAA Championships, Wigmore set her sights on top spot in the province and a national podium spot.

In her opening xc race in September, Jamie lost to Lethbridge College’s Emily Lucas, but that would be the last time before November that Wigmore would be bested by another college runner.  She won her next four college races, including a huge 30 second victory in the 2015 ACAC Cross Country Running Championships in Lethbridge.  Wigmore’s ACAC  Championships victory was only the third-ever individual title by a Wolves female athlete.

At the 2015 CCAA Cross Country Running Championships in Brockville, ON in November, Wigmore and 2014 silver medalist Jessy Lacourse from Quebec separated themselves from the pack after 3.5 kms of the soggy 5 km course.  Lacourse proved to be slightly stronger over the last 800m and notched the victory, 10 seconds ahead of Wigmore.

Jamie finished her xc career at GPRC as the most decorated female xc athlete in history.  Over 4 years, she was a four-time ACAC All Conference Runner, three-time ACAC Individual Medalist (1 gold, 2 silver), three-time ACAC Team Medalist (gold, silver, and bronze), three-time CCAA All Canadian, and four-time CCAA Tournament All Star (3 times first team, once second team.)

#2 Martens’ Sensational Silver

Bigmir

Nothing like laying down a big PR, scoring a silver medal, and representing your country at 2015 Pan Am Junior Track and Field Champs

Redemption is one of the sweetest feelings in sports.  Mirelle Martens experienced that feeling in spades at the 2015 Pan Am Junior Track and Field Championships in Edmonton at the end of July.

After missing out on qualifying for Team Canada in the 5000m at Nationals by one place, Martens managed to secure a “roll down” spot in the Pan Ams in her secondary event, the 3000, despite only placing 8th at Nationals.

Eager to prove that she belonged, Mirelle produced her best-ever track performance at Pan Ams, stopping the clock at 9:41, a scant 3.5 seconds shy of the gold medal.  In the process, she defeated both Canadian Junior 5000m champion Anne Marie Comeau and Peru’s Saida Meneses, the 2015 Pan Am Cross Country Running Champion, who finished 23 places better than Martens the last time the two raced.

#1 Benson Posts Multiple Olympic Standards

Fiona Benson represented Canada and the 2015 World Track and Field Championship in Beijing, China

Fiona Benson represented Canada and the 2015 World Track and Field Championship in Beijing, China

Well it’s a bit of a cheat given that Fiona Benson hasn’t been a Club member since 2011, but, darn it, we’re climbing on the bandwagon for 2015.

The 23 year old runner from Tom’s Lake had a breakthrough track season where she demolished her 800m PR by 8+ seconds and became only the fifth-ever Canadian women to break the magic 2 minute barrier.  She also captured the Canadian Championship at 800m and was a semi-finalist in the World Championships in Beijing, China.

In addition, Fiona achieved Olympic qualifying times in both the 800m and 1500m.  She ended the year ranked #1 in Canada in both the 1500m and mile, and #2 in the 800m.  On the 2015 world list, she finished #10 in the mile, #30 in the 1500m, and #41 in in the 800m.

It was really fun to watch Fiona crush it on the world stage this year.  We look forward to 2016 and hope to see her become the first-ever Peace Country track athlete to compete in the Olympic Games.

 

 

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Tough Going for Martens at AC Junior Nats XC

Mirelle Martens placed 8th in the Junior Women's race at the 2015 AC National XC Running Chmapionships

Mirelle Martens placed 8th in the Junior Women’s race at the 2015 AC National XC Running Championships

Overcoming a fall in the first 100m and a lost shoe in the last 2 km, Wolves Athletics Club runner Mirelle Martens gutted out an 8th place finish in the Junior Women’s race at the Athletics Canada National Cross Country Running Championships in Kingston, ON on Saturday.

Martens recorded a time of 21:40 for the muddy 6 km track.  Hannah Bennison from Vernon, BC won the race in 20:29.

With cross country season finished, Martens now sets her sights on the indoor track season starting in January.

Full results

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Wigmore Second at CCAA XC Nationals

Jamie Wigmore 2015 CCAA Silver Medalist

Jamie Wigmore 2015 CCAA Silver Medalist

Wolves runner Jamie Wigmore’s quest to bring home a second consecutive individual national women’s title to Grande Prairie came up just short on Saturday at the 2015 CCAA Cross Country Running Championships in Brockville, ON on Saturday.
Wigmore, the reigning ACAC champion, shadowed Ontario champion Emily Marcolini and Quebec champion Jessy Lacourse for the early part of the race. The Wolves runner and Lacourse broke away with 1.5 kms left in the soggy 5 km race, setting up an exciting head-to-head finish.
In the end, Lacourse, last year’s CCAA silver medalist surged with 500m remaining and opened up a small gap which she maintained to the finish. The Quebec runner’s time was 18:33, 10 seconds ahead of Wigmore. Marcolini held on for third.
Wolves coach Bill Corcoran was proud of the way Wigmore ran. “Jamie executed her race plan well and left it all out there on the course today. She was a bit disappointed that she didn’t win, but that is really just a testament to high standards she sets for herself. Jessy is a truly excellent runner; there is no shame in finishing runner up to an athlete of her caliber.”
With a CCAA silver medal, Wigmore equals the third best individual showing for a Wolves women’s athlete at Nationals. Fiona Benson (2010) and Mirelle Martens (2014) won CCAA gold, while Jessica Schmidt (2002) was also a silver medalist.
In the team standings, the Wolves women had a tough day, finishing 11th overall, three places shy of their national ranking coming into the event. Maria Houle cramped in the middle of the race and had to gut out a 66th place finish. She was closely followed by Christie Shepherd (73rd) and Kirsten Manz (79th). Ashely Camsell (97th) and Emily Whalen (109th) were the other Wolves finishers.
College Lionel Groulx won the women’s team title ahead of second place University of BC – Okanagan.
In the men’s 8 km race, the Wolves ended up in 16th place. Brandon Wladyko led the way for the locals with a 47th place finish. Joel Demarcke (73rd), Josh Malmsten (96th), and Kyle Murray (98th) rounded out the Wolves scorers.
Sherbrooke took the men’s title while Lethbridge College placed second.

And in other xcountry running news on Saturday ….
A pair of Wolves Athletics Club runners ended up on the podium at the 2015 CIS Cross Country Championships in Guelph, ON.

Mirelle Martens placed 11th individually, and she and her Trinity Western University team mates placed second in the team standings. Martens was also named a CIS second team All Canadian for her performance.
Jessica Baraskewich, running for the University of Calgary, captured a team bronze medal. She ended up 87th individually.
Guelph University won the women’s title, while the University of Victoria upset perennial champion Guelph on the men’s side for the nationals win.

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Wigmore Gets it Done – Wins ACAC Cross Country Championships

Jamie Wigmore cruises to the win at the 2015 ACAC XC Running Championships

Jamie Wigmore cruises to the win at the 2015 ACAC XC Running Championships

Coming off back-to-back silver medals in the past two provincial championships, Wolves runner Jamie Wigmore finally captured the big prize Saturday with an emphatic victory in the 2015 ACAC Cross Country Running Championship in Lethbridge.

Wigmore took the lead at the 400m mark of the flat and fast 5 km course, gradually built up a 150m gap, and then cruised to victory in a time of 18:40, 33 seconds better than 2012 ACAC champion Mariya Jenkins of Concordia University. Lethbridge College’s Emily Lucas placed third.

With her victory, Wigmore becomes only the third GPRC women runner to win an ACAC individual championship. Tara Lee Stillwell took the top spot in 1999, and Mirelle Martens took gold last year.

Jamie Wigmore and Mariya Jenkins in the early stages of the 2015 ACAC Cross Country Running Championships

Jamie Wigmore and Mariya Jenkins in the early stages of the 2015 ACAC Cross Country Running Championships

In a very close team competition, the Wolves women placed fourth with a team score of 50, a mere 3 points shy of the bronze medal and only 18 points out of the top spot. Lethbridge College, Concordia University, and Red Deer College placed 1-2-3 respectively.

The other Wolves women finishers included Maria Houle (8th), Christie Shepherd (20th), Kirsten Manz (24th), Ashley Camsell (25th), Emily Whalen (46th), and Tamica Campbell (51st).

Brandon Wladyko led the GPRC men with a 7th place finish. Joel Demarcke finished 15th, Josh Malmsten recorded a 22nd place mark, and Kyle Murray was 37th. Collectively, the Wolves men were the 5th place team behind the winning Lethbridge College.

Later on Saturday afternoon, the ACAC gave out its cross country season’s awards. Wigmore was named ACAC Grand Prix Champion and ACAC Female Runner of the Year. Brandon Wladyko and she were also named to the 2015 ACAC All Conference Cross Country Running team.

Next up for the cross country Wolves is the 2015 CCAA National Cross Country Running Championships in Brockville, ON on November 14.

Full results are posted here

 

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Women’s Course Record Falls at Wolves XC Relay

It's always a big deal to win a coveted Wolves XC Series 1st place ribbon!

It’s always a big deal to win a coveted Wolves XC Series 1st place ribbon!

Wolves runner Jamie Wigmore established a women’s course record on Saturday at the Wolves XC Relay at Wapiti Nordic.

Running the first leg for Wolves – Gurls Rool, Wigmore covered the hilly 2.8 km track in 10:58, 29 seconds better than Fiona Benson’s 2010 mark.  Wigmore and her teammates, Maria Houle and Christie Shepherd, won the three person, three leg event in a time of 36:21, over a minute ahead of the second place team of Wolves – Droppings.

Brandon Wladyko had the quickest men’s leg.  The second year GPRC team member ground out 10:17 leg, a mere 8 seconds off of Hayden Hollowell’s 2013 course record.

Camden Sipma (3:58) and Madison Twelvetree (4:11) had the quickest boys and girls 1 km legs in the elementary 3 x 1 km race.  The two along with Adam Twelvetree formed the team of I Know I Emailed Bill which won the event in a time of 12:32.

Full results are posted on the Wolves XC Series Website

The Wolves XC Relay was the final event of the 2015 Wolves XC Running Series and the last event on the local xc running calendar for 2015.  However, the GPRC Wolves team still has some unfinished business as it contests the ACAC XC Running Championships in Lethbridge next Saturday and the CCAA XC Running Championships in Brockville, ON on November 14.

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