Story by Jeremy Power Photos by Justin Van Leeuwen How do you decide which marathons you will run each year? With over 65 marathons held in Canada, choosing your next one can be a daunting task. The right race depends on what type of marathoner you are: First time marathoners can rest assured their day will be memorable, no matter which event they choose. Time chasing marathoners, who are targeting a new personal best or the elusive Boston Qualifying time, want their races to be flat and fast. Landscape loving marathoners look for scenic courses, and they don’t mind running up a hill as long as there is an amazing view at the top. Finally, there are the Bling marathoners who are always searching for the next amazing medal to add to their collection. With the Bling marathoners in mind, we searched the country looking for Canada’s Top Ten Marathon medals. We found medals that spin, a medal made of rock, and even a medal that lights up. Prepare to fill your calendar with race dates as we present ten of the country’s most unique medals. You may even wear one of these medals for your next night on the town.
They stand outside for hours in harsh sun, cold rain, and wicked winds. They clap until their hands are numb, clang cowbells until their ears ring, and holler themselves hoarse for us. Where would we be without our fans? Photos by Ian Murchison (Toronto), Aaron McKenzie Fraser (Halifax), Zoomphoto.ca (Ottawa)
The streets of the Nation's Capital came alive on May 29th and 30th for yet another Ottawa Race Weekend. Saturday evening saw one of the strongest Canadian 10K fields ever assembled duke it out along the Rideau Canal. A remarkable 39 runners broke 35:00, led by Lelisa Desisa's 28:08. Boston Marathon legend Dire Tune led the women with a 32:11. With just under 8500 finishers, the 10K was the third largest race in Ontario so far this year. The evenings 5K hosted another 7500 finishers, with nearly 2700 in the 2K as well.
Sunday's half marathon had 9757 finishers, led by Lawton Redman (1:10:11) and Karine Lefebvre (1:20:10). Japan's Arata Fujiwara captured the marathon championship with a 2:09:33, breaking from a tight 30km pack to break the tape. Ethiopia's Merima Mohammed (2:28:19) escaped countrywoman Radiya Adlo for the women's win.
Congratulations to all the racers - and the residents of the capital region as a whole - for again being part of one of North America's premier running festivals.
Photos by Victor Turco
On May 23rd, Halifax once again played host to Atlantic Canada's largest running weekend. The hilly Bluenose Marathon's 294 finishers were led by Greg Wieczorek's 2:39:03 and Kinue Taga's 3:26:23. Over 1800 runners completed the half marathon, with another 2321 in the 10K and 1405 in the 5K.
Congratulations to everyone, and don't forget to print your customized finisher certificate at www.eventsonline.ca/fc/bluenose.html.
Photos by Aaron McKenzie Fraser
Despite warm conditions, the 2010 Mississauga Marathon course's net downhill billing lived up to the hype, yielding a men's median time of 3:59 and a women's median time of 4:28... both over 20 minutes below the North American average! Daniel Njenga moved up in more ways than one, going from third in last year's half marathon to first in this year's marathon.
Jhon Sanchez and Mary Davies both ran away and hid in the half marathon, each leading virtually the whole way. Equally impressive were Josephat Ongeri and Lucy Muhami in Saturday's 10K, breaking 30 minutes and 36 minutes respectively.
A cool new feature at Sportstats.ca is the ability to view both your race photos and your finishline video next to your race results. Check it out! Congratulations to all the weekend racers.
Photos by Sandra Laurin
For iRun Runner-in-Chief Ray Zahab, the next big challenge was to
become the first person ever to travel on foot from Hercules Inlet, at the edge of Antarctica, to the South Pole. Zahab and fellow Canadian adventurers Kevin Vallely and Richard Weber, who journeyed on skis, completed the 1,100-kilometre unsupported expedition in a world-record time of 33 days, 23 hours and 55 minutes.
Photos courtesy of Ray Zahab