Canada has a new distance running star.
At just 23, Kim Doerksen of Gibson, B.C. had a debut to remember, winning the BMO Vancouver Marathon in 2:36:59.
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“I was hoping for a sub-2:40,” said Doerksen after breaking the tape. “I didn’t know how far under I could go. I just kept pushing and stayed with the boys.” Doerksen ran with one of her male training partners from the Vancouver Falcons. “In practice, if the boys are ahead of me I don’t like it.”
— Natasha Wodak (@tasha_wodak) May 4, 2014
Doersken battled a cool and rainy Vancouver morning over the hilly course to a statement performance in front of a home crowd. Even her competitors were cheering for her. “I really wanted Kim to win,” second place finisher Ellie Greenwood said after finishing in a strong 2:43:04. The Briton lives in North Vancouver and is in the final stages of becoming a Canadian citizen. The well-respected ultrarunner will next run the Comrades Marathon 89K in South Africa. Bean Wrenn of Boulder, CO took third in 2:51:16. She was also the top women’s master. The men’s race saw Washington, D.C. based Ethiopian Birahanu Mekonnen easily take the win in 2:21:08. Kenyan Gilbert Kiptoo, who races often in Canada, faded to second in 2:27:20. Swedish runner David Nilsson rounded out the truly international podium in 2:27:46. Four-time winner Thomas Omwenga struggled in five, but said after the race that it was important to finish and that he would be back to contend. B.C.’s Ryan Day was right behind him in sxith. His 2:33:14 ranked him as top Canadian in the race. The half-marathon Paul Kimugul was is on a tear. He demolished the course record by over two minutes, laying down a world class time of 1:02:36. The Kenyan has won multiple races this year in Canada, including last weekend’s Vancouver Sun Run 10K. Oregon-based Moroccan Aissa Dghoughi placed second in 1:03:38. New Canadian citizen Kip Kangogo, who lives in Lethbridge, Alta., came in third in 1:04:59.
— Dylan Wykes (@DylanWykes) May 4, 2014
Newfoundland’s Kate Bazeley won the women’s race in 1:15:18. She had a comfortable lead for much of the race, but Austin-based American runner Allison Macsas nearly caught her at the line, finishing just three seconds behind. Local runner Katherine Watkins was third in 1:16:38, also making her the top women’s master.
The 8K was won by Victoria’s Chris Callendar. Marilyn Arsenault easily won the women’s race, and was also fourth overall and the top women’s master.