It was a beautiful day on Vancouver Island for the 40th Harriers Pioneer 8K on Sunday. American Anthony Tomsich and Natasha Wodak took the wins in 24:44 and 26:04.
Wodak posted on Instagram before the race, detailing its importance to her. “Tomorrow I’m racing the Pioneer 8K in Victoria–a race that will forever be special to me. It was here six years ago that I had the breakthrough race of my life. I ran a two-minute personal best–25:28–an unofficial Canadian record–I was SHOCKED. I had no idea I was able to run that fast! It was the race that made me believe I was capable of going to the Olympics!”
Tomsich is a coach with Mile2Marathon and a native Alaskan, and moved to Vancouver in 2016.
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Tomorrow I’m racing the Pioneer 8k in Victoria- a race that will forever be special to me. It was here 6 years ago that I had the break through race of my life. I ran a 2 minute PB – 25:28- an unofficial Canadian record- I was SHOCKED. I had no idea I was able to run that fast! It was the race that made me believe I was capable of going to the Olympics! #nevergiveup #breakthroughrace #pioneer8k2013 #tfierce #bebrave #pioneer8k #PIH
Second place in the women’s results went to Canadian half-marathon record holder Rachel Cliff. Cliff had an amazing year in 2018, breaking the Canadian half-marathon record, and then debuting the marathon in Berlin only 53 seconds off the Canadian record. Yesterday she finished in 26:15, just nine seconds behind Wodak.
Third place went to Marilyn Arsenault in 29:00.
In the men’s results, second place went to Christopher Taylor in 25:05 and third place to Andrew Russell in 25:24.
The Pionner 8K is the opening event of the Vancouver Island Race Series. Full results and upcoming races can be found here.