Four thousand runners toed the line at yesterday’s Spring Run-off in Toronto’s High Park in uncharacteristically beautiful weather. Tristan Woodfine of Cobden, Ont. scored a third consecutive victory in 24:08 and Scottish-born Sarah Inglis of Langley, B.C. managed to edge past last weekend’s Around the Bay champion Mengistu Emebet in 26:47.
Ethiopian-born Emebet led until the final two kilometres, finishing second, only 20 seconds behind Inglis in 27:07. And Toronto’s Tamara Jewett scored third place in 27:12 just ahead of Dayna Pidhoresky, who finished second at Around the Bay.
Inglis set a new all-comers record of 15:29 in the Vancouver St. Patrick’s Day 5K last month.
It was the fastest Woodfine has ever run this course, coming off a three-and-a-half-minute personal best (2:15) in the Houston Marathon in January. Woodfine was the 2017 Canada Running Series champion and 2018 runner-up.
The course ends on a brutally long, steep hill that is its own race-within-a-race (the Kill the Hill challenge). Jessey the Elf of Brantford, Ont. won this challenge in 1:12.4, followed by Woodfine in 1:14.6 and Max Turek of Hamilton in 1:15.7. Among the women, it was Inglis in 1:29.8 followed by Pidhoresky in 1:31.3 and Jewett in 1:31.5.
In the 5K, Andy Hein of Omemee, Ont. won in 16:06, followed by David Poloni of Burlington, Ont. in 16:24 and Marek Bialkowski of Parry Sound, Ont. in 16:40. In the women’s 5K, Olivia Roussel of Toronto was first, in 18:33, with Erin Gregory of Napanee, Ont. in second place (19:39) and Rianna Smuk of Toronto in third (19:45).
In the women’s 5K Kill the Hill challenge, it was Roussel in 1:23 followed by Gregory in 1:30.8 and Ana-Sophia Rashid-Cocker of Toronto in 1:36.5. Among the 5K men, Kevin Smith of Toronto was the fastest on the hill, in 1:13.5, with Hein in second (1:13.7) and Jack Emo of Toronto in third (1:19.4).