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Elite Athletes

Sexton takes the #Edmonton10k for the women, with Coolsaet adding another Canada Running Series 10k win

By | Edmonton 10k, Elite Athletes, General | No Comments

Ontarians Reid Coolsaet (30:08) of Hamilton and London’s Leslie Sexton (34:07) were crowned champions in the inaugural Edmonton 10k, presented by lululemon, this morning, in what was very much a celebration of running in Alberta’s capital. The city and a capacity crowd of 5,000 were ready.

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Photo credit: Inge Johnson/Canada Running Series

Dayna Pidhoresky Leads Impressive Field for Scotiabank Vancouver Half Marathon & 5k

By | Elite Athletes, General, Scotiabank Vancouver Half | No Comments

Photo credit: Inge Johnson/Canada Running Series

by Paul Gains

Injury free for nearly two years now, Dayna Pidhoresky has been enjoying an unprecedented block of consistent training and is raring to go at the Scotiabank Vancouver Half Marathon & 5k on June 24th, a Canada Running Series event.

“I want to win for sure,” the 31 year-old Vancouver resident says of her goals. “Time-wise it depends on the day. If I am feeling good then maybe I can really push it a little bit more. I think the main thing is to get some Canada Running Series (CRS) points and try to win.

“Last year I ran really slow there because I was in my marathon recovery phase, so I am in need of a little bit of redemption. I am familiar with the course now and I know the second half can be harder coming off a pretty long downhill section. I think Natasha (Wodak) is doing it so it will be good if she ends up racing –  I am ready to put up a fight.”

She laughs at her last comment knowing that Wodak registered a fine 5th place finish at the 2018 Commonwealth Games and remains the Canadian 10,000m record holder at 31:41.59. 

At the same time Pidhoresky has enjoyed an impressive start to the 2018 season. In March she won the Around The Bay 30k Road Race in Hamilton, scored a personal best 10k when she finished 5th in the Vancouver Sun Run and then claimed the silver medal at the Canadian Half Marathon Championships in Calgary. Toronto’s Sasha Gollish was the victor that day.

“So far I have been very consistent,” Pidhoresky declares. “I haven’t had that special race that I have been wanting where everything kind of shines, but I have put in a lot of solid races. The main thing is I have been healthy – no injuries at all for going on two years.”

During the 2016 Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon she suffered a painful sacral fracture that crushed her physically and emotionally. Yet she battled back seven months later to run a personal best marathon of 2:36:08 in Ottawa. That performance has led to selection for the Canadian team at the 2017 World Championships marathon in London, and suggestions that she is destined to follow Lanni Marchant and Krista DuChene into the ranks of top international class marathoning.

The men’s field features Lethbridge’s Kip Kangogo who last year won this race for the sixth time, and former Canadian international Rob Watson, of Vancouver. To view the complete elite field for the 2018 Scotiabank Half Marathon & 5k, please click here.

Kangogo was 4th in the half marathon at the Vancouver Marathon festival in early May, then three weeks later, finished 2nd at the Canadian Half Marathon Championships in Calgary. Despite his advanced years – he will be 39 next month – the Kenyan born Canadian citizen never fails to turn up ready to do battle, and perhaps feels he owns this race.

Watson ran 2:13:29 at the 2013 Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon and once claimed to have retired. Yet his ‘fun running’ has left him in fairly good condition. Despite extensive coaching duties with the Mile2Marathon group, he has returned to serious training to win the Vancouver Marathon last month. He also finished 5th in the Vancouver Sun Run in a very good 30:01. On such evidence this certainly promises to be a competitive race.

The picturesque course starts on the grounds of the University of British Columbia and traces the Pacific Ocean shoreline through Point Grey and Kitsilano to Stanley Park. With turns, some hills and the challenging climb over Burrard Bridge at 18km the event records are quite extraordinary. Lioudmila Kortchaguina set the women’s record of 70:50 in 2003 while Kenya’s Patrick Nthwia ran 63:10 in 2007 to establish the men’s standard.

The top Canadian man and woman will each receive $1,500 as well as 45 CRS points which count toward the overall title and the accompanying $3,000 awarded to title winners.

For further information and last-minute entries, see www.scotiahalf.ca.

 

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Athletes to Watch For at the Toronto Waterfront 10k

By | Elite Athletes, Toronto Waterfront 10K | No Comments

Natasha Wodak, 36, Vancouver 

“You know it’s just about fun for me I really want to enjoy the race.”

The Toronto Waterfront 10k defending champion, Natasha Wodak is the Canadian 10,000m record holder (31:41.59) and represented Canada at the 2016 Olympic Games.

How Natasha prepares for the race: 

“Generally when I come to Toronto the races are in the morning so it’s a little tricky with it being three hours time difference. Usually I am getting only 5 or 6 hours sleep. I will go to bed at midnight and get up at 5:30 a.m. and that works fine me

I like to be at the start an hour and ten minutes before, to get settled and begin my warm up. If I am away I will usually have a coffee and a chocolate chip/coconut energy bar. I try to aim for 250 calories before a 5 or 10k. If I am at home or a place where it’s available, I will have a piece of multigrain toast with peanut butter and banana. But I need that two hours before the race.”

Follow Natasha on Twitter and Instagram.

Reid Coolsaet, 34, Hamilton

“I haven’t looked closely at the competition, but I’d be going for the win.” 

Reid Coolsaet is a two time Canadian Olympic marathoner and father of two. Coolsaet is the second fastest marathoner in Canadian history with a personal best of 2:10:28.

How Reid prepares for the race:

“Waterfront 10k morning is going to be an early morning. I usually eat oatmeal then an energy gel thirty minutes before the race and a sports drink throughout the morning.

Even if I’ve had a bad sleep, once I drink a couple of cups of tea with caffeine before the race, I am never tired for the race. For Waterfront 10k I will wake up at 4:30 a.m. Hopefully I can fall asleep at 9:30 p.m.”

Follow Reid on Twitter and Instagram. 

Sasha Gollish, 35, Toronto 

“A fun time and a good race, because really you cannot ask for much more than that, right!?” 

Sasha Gollish is an extremely versatile distance runner. She has a 1,500m personal best of 4:07.08 and claimed the 1,500m bronze medal at the 2015 Pan Am Games.

How Sasha prepares for the race: 

“I will probably get up somewhere around 4:30 a.m. to make sure I can get a proper breakfast in. I’ll likely stick with what I eat on ‘tempo saturdays’ which is a bowl of greek yogurt and some berries. And of course, coffee with a splash of milk.

In all honesty, I’ll probably go to bed when I feel tired. Recovery after the race will be really important, so I’ll be sure to go to bed early the night of race day. I am not worried if I don’t get a good night sleep before a race, as long as the sleep before that night has been sufficient I know I’m going to be ok.”

Follow Sasha on Twitter and Instagram. 

Krista DuChene, 41, Brantford

“I will not be running any super fast personal best times. So something around 35 minutes I will be happy with.” 

Krista DuChene, a Brantford, Ontario mother of three ran the second fastest marathon ever by a Canadian with her 2:28:32 at the 2013 Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon. She represented Canada at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

How Krista prepares for the race: 

“I am used to running early in the morning so that is not something that would concern me. I would plan to have an early dinner the night before, be finished by 6 and get to bed early between 9 and 10 p.m.

It depends on when we are catching a bus to the start. I will probably wake up 5 a.m. or 4:30 a.m. have my usual bagel with honey, a few coffees drink some sports drink. That would work for me.”

Follow Krista on Twitter and Instagram. 

 

To view the full start list click here.