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Athletics Canada names five athletes to Budapest 2023 team

Canadian marathon record holders Cam Levins and Natasha Wodak headline the early selections to the 2023 World Athletics Championships

cam levins at world championships marathon 2022 Photo by: Marley Dickinson

On Tuesday, Athletics Canada named the first five athletes that were selected to represent the country at the 2023 World Athletics Championships in Budapest, which will take place from Aug. 19-27, 2023. The team is headlined by two Canadians who broke the national marathon record in 2022, Cam Levins of Black Creek, B.C. and Natasha Wodak of North Vancouver.

Levins broke his previous national marathon record of 2:09:25 by over two minutes at the 2022 World Athletics Championships in Eugene, Ore., where he placed fourth overall in 2:07:09. His finish was the highest ever by a Canadian male or female marathoner at a major championship. Levins will be competing at the 2023 Tokyo Marathon in the lead-up to the 2023 World Championships this March.

At the 2022 Berlin Marathon, Wodak achieved the Canadian women’s marathon record, running 2:23:12. This was not only an improvement on the previous national record, but also a three-minute personal best for Wodak.

The other three Canadian athletes joining Levins and Wodak in Budapest are the second-fastest Canadian female marathoner and the reigning national champion, Malindi Elmore, Olympic silver medallist Mohammed Ahmed, and race walking bronze medallist Evan Dunfee.

natasha wodak
Canada’s Natasha Wodak and Malindi Elmore congratulate Molly Seidel after the 2020 Tokyo Olympic marathon. 

Levins, Wodak and Elmore will all be participating in the marathon at worlds, while Ahmed gained early selection for the men’s 10,000m and Dunfee for the 35 km race walk.

In Oregon, Dunfee finished sixth in the 35 km race walk in a North American record time of 2:25:02, and Ahmed was fifth in the 5,000m and sixth in the 10,000m.

These five athletes were named to the team before athletes of other events because the first selection meeting for the marathon, 10,000m and 35 km race walk took place in early February. More marathon, race walk, and 10,000m athletes could be named to the team in June as part of subsequent selection meetings.

The final selection for Team Canada in all other events will take place on Aug. 3.

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