On a warm Sunday morning in Winnipeg, Canadian marathon record holder Cam Levins made a statement, winning the 2022 Canadian Half-Marathon Championship in a course record time of 63:23 in Winnipeg (finishing before the race was halted due to the heat). This title marks Levins’s seventh national title and his first since setting the record at 2:09:25 in 2018.
After being selected to represent Canada at the 2022 World Championships in Eugene, Ore., Levins ran the race as a tune-up for the marathon next month. Ben Preisner finished second in 67:20, while Thomas Toth was third in 68:22.
Levins broke the previous record of 64:44 by over a minute. The B.C. native, who currently lives and trains in Portland, Ore., ran in the 5,000m and 10,000m events at the 2012 Olympics in London, and then ran the full marathon at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo last summer. Levins holds the Canadian marathon record with a time of 2:09:25 from the 2018 Toronto Waterfront Marathon.
Two-time Olympian Cam Levins, who holds the Canadian record for full marathon, won the half marathon race on the men's side.
Two-time Olympian Natasha Wodak won the women's title.
Both are from B.C.
— Scott Billeck (@ScottBilleck) June 19, 2022
In the women’s race, two-time Olympian Natasha Wodak took home her second national championship of the season in 1:15:20. In an interview with the Winnipeg Sun, Wodak mentioned that she knew times would be three to four minutes slower than usual due to the humidity.
Wodak, who holds a personal best of 69:41, got out to an early lead over Toronto’s Sasha Gollish and Laura Desjardins. Wodak extended her lead over the final few kilometres, besting Gollish by a minute and a half (1:16:55).
Gollish is now three for three in podium finishes at national championships in 2022 (silver: 10,000m and 21.1K, bronze: 10K).
The battle for the bronze came down to the wire, with Desjardins and Kinsey Middleton fighting for the final podium spot in the final kilometre. Desjardins edged out Middleton by 18 seconds in 1:18:19. Middleton was fourth in 1:18:37.
Middleton was selected to her first Canadian world championship team earlier this month, after her breakout performance at the 2022 Ottawa Marathon.
Many runners at the Manitoba Marathon on Sunday had their race cut short when directors decided to stop the race partway through, due to extreme heat and humidity. At the 7:00 a.m. race start, the temperature was around 23 degrees C, but the humidex quickly shot up to the 33-40 degree C range within an hour.