It was a morning to remember for Canadian distance running at Alton Baker Park in Eugene on Sunday. Cam Levins shattered his own Canadian record in the marathon at the World Championships, running 2:07:10 for fourth overall behind winner Tamirat Tola in 2:05:35 and Mosinet Geremew (2:06:43), both of Ethiopia, and Bashir Abdi of Belgium (2:06:48). Levins beat his previous record of 2:09.25, which he set at the 2018 Toronto Waterfront Marathon.
After the race, an elated Levins said he realized after the Olympics that he “needed to be better in every way, across the board,” and that he had worked hard to improve his training in every way–and we all witnessed the results on the course today. (In Sapporo last year, Levins faded in the extreme humidity, finishing 72nd in 2:28:43).
Cam Levins (@CamLevins) knew he was a 2:07 runner before anybody else did.
Today, the BC athlete with unwavering confidence and focus is fourth in the world.
2:07 low. Slashed more than two minutes off his Canadian record. pic.twitter.com/sgPyIY9wTi
— Athletics Canada (@AthleticsCanada) July 17, 2022
After a very sedate first 30 km, with runners still in a large pack, Levins could be seen near the front, though never leading. When Tola, the eventual winner, kicked hard after an hour and 40 minutes, no one went with him–but Levins continued to look comfortable in the chase pack of five or six runners, only becoming separated from Geremew and Abdi in the last few kilometres.
This is the best-ever performance in a world championship marathon by a Canadian male; Peter Maher’s 10th-place finish at the 1993 World Championships in Stuttgart, Germany was the previous best.
Rory Linkletter, Canada’s half-marathon record holder, ran a two-minute personal best today, running 2:10:24 and finishing 20th. “I felt great out there,” says Linkletter. ” This was Linkletter’s fifth career marathon. “I am really getting the hang of the distance and everything came together today.”
Canada placed three men inside the top 30, with Ben Preisner finishing 28th, in 2:11:47. Preisner started conservatively and picked off 15 to 20 runners over the final 10K. “It wasn’t a home run but I am happy with the way I battled,” says Preisner. This was Preisner’s second-best time in his career.
The 2022 World Athletics Championships are taking place from July 15-25 from Hayward Field in Eugene, Ore. All the action will be brought to you by Canadian Running and Asics Canada. Follow us on Twitter on Instagram for all things Team Canada and up-to-date exclusive news and content