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The Christie-Phoenix Insurance Victoria Run Series took place tonight at the University of Victoria’s Centennial Stadium. There were six races contested over three distances under cool temperatures and breezy conditions.

At 6:30 PM, the starter’s pistol sounded for the 3,000-metre elite race, which included several national level triathletes and an attempt at the Canadian record in the 50-59 age-group by Vancouver’s Colin Dignum.

Dignum was seeking to run under the time of 9:11.59, which was set in 2008 by Jerry Kooymans at the age of 53 in Toronto. Although Dignum didn’t get the national record, he did break the provincial record with his finish time of 9:18.80.

Carlos Lesser won the race in the time of 8:55.82 – a near seven second win over fellow triathlete Brennen Smith, who finished in 9:02.48, while third place finisher was Martin Sobey who finished six seconds back at 9:08.21.

University of Victoria Vikes athlete Matthew Winkler finished fourth in the time of 9:16.15, while Dignum finished fifth.

“I didn’t quite have it tonight,” said, an out of breath Dignum, “but I have a couple more chances to race the distance again this summer.”

The World Masters Games will be taking place at the end of August in Vancouver. Many top masters athletes from Canada are targeting the competition.

The elite 800-metre race was a mixed event. Although records and standards do not count for women in a mixed gender race below 5,000-metres the athletes were keen to make a good competition out of the first of three at the distance.

UVic Vike Andrea Robinson paced teammate Carolyn Herrell, who was looking for a new personal best around the time of 2:12. Robinson’s job was to take the first 400m in 63/64 seconds, which she did. The first 400m was run in 63 and Herrell finished in 2:12.83. Fellow Vike Matthew Winkler won the race in the time of 1:59.16, while Carlos Lesser (2:06.31) and Robin Poirier (2:09.29) rounded out the top three.

The next meet is Saturday, June 4th at Centennial Stadium at UVic. The third and final track meet will take place Saturday, July 23rd, one week after the Canadian Rio Olympic Trials.

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