It was a cold, rainy morning in Montreal for the Canadian half-marathon championships on April 17. But the weather couldn’t dampen the excitement surrounding the highly anticipated match-ups in both the men’s and women’s races.
With an aggressive early pace, Reid Coolsaet and Matt Loiselle quickly broke away from the rest of the field to turn the men’s race into a two-man duel. Loiselle, the underdog, boldly pushed the pace early on. But by halfway, Coolsaet’s pedigree showed as Canada’s top marathoner pulled away to add an eighth Canadian title to his resume. Fighting the wind and rain, Coolsaet crossed the line in 1:04:54, with Loiselle following in 1:05:28.
The women’s race featured established talent Megan Brown, facing off against rising star Dayna Pidhoresky. As in the men’s race, the top two women wasted no time in separating themselves from the rest of the field. After a fast start, Pidhoresky cracked around the half way mark, falling off of the pace and leaving Brown to power home to a 1:14:08 win. Pidhoresky was second in 1:15:03.
Along with the championships, the race featured a field of 3,500 runners, who raised $355,000 for local charities.