Matti in the lead at the Portland Track Festival - Photo by Klotz Images
Matti runs for the Kootenay Chaos Track Club in British Columbia. We first met him after he won the Alan Webb middle school boys mile at the Nike XC Invitational in 2016. Matti had burned through the competition back home so he and dad dropped down to Oregon to find some faster kids to run against. There were faster kids just not faster than Matti. The following June they returned to Oregon for the Portland Track Festival. Evan Henkel gave him the most competition in 4:37.05 which is the 5th fastest time for the meet. Matti's time was 4:32.47 which still stands as the top time for the meet's history.
Matti made the "Cover" of Youth Runner Magazine - Photo by Sam Gherke
We won't see the Ericksons this summer because his brother is graduating on the PTF weekend. Otherwise Matti wanted to run the high school mile.
Matti has a long season of running this year so has started out slow. He has the National Legion Meet in August which is "the big meet" for his age group in Canada and his coach is trying to get him to peak then. He has done a few meets as training runs but mostly base running up untill a week or so ago. The BC High School provincials are this coming week and he is in the 800m &1500m.
The finish of the Alan Webb Boys Middle School Mile in 2016 - Photo by Klotz Images
He is a first year "Junior" and will be running against older runners. He does't seem to have issues with older runners in cross country as he won the BC High School Junior race last fall. His coach still doesn't quite know which distance he is best suited for as he does well in races from 400 meters to 8km. Sounds like they will let that one play out on it's own.
Matti chatting about the race with Youth Runner Interview Taitum Schapp
Matti's coach is good friends with the organizers of the Harry Jerome International in Vancouver. Coach Alex has asked them to consider offering a High School mile there at the end of June as Matti is quite capable of bettering the 52 year old provincial Midget Mile record of 4:22 set in 1966.
Good Luck this season Matti!