First woman, Monicah Ngige of Kenya (32:25). Photo credit: Christopher Kelsall.

© Copyright – 2018 – Victoria Sports News

The 34th annual Vancouver Sun Run lived up to its name as the sun shone brightly for 32,583 runners and walkers on Sunday, April 22.

The top finishers were Brendan Gregg (29:15) from California and Monicah Ngige (32:25) from Kenya and the top Canadians were Geoffrey Martinson who now lives in Vancouver but is originally from Prince George. He crossed the finish line in second place with a time of 29:35, while Rachel Cliff of Vancouver – fresh off of her Commonwealth Games 10,000-metre race, finished third overall behind American Emma Bates and Ngige, for first Canadian. This performance is a new road 10K personal best of 32:41. She has run the distance on the track in the time of 32:00.03 and looks to improve on that next week at the Payton Jordan Invitational in Los Angeles.

“I want to get on the other side of that 32-minute barrier,” said Cliff.

“Obviously you want to win, but I am pretty happy with the result,” said Martinson who trains at the BC Endurance Project in Vancouver with Cliff.

Ngige was off to New York to race a 10K where she set her personal best of 31:55 last year. “If I have the opportunity to come back next year, I would like to defend my title,” said Ngige. “It is a beautiful race that is fast even though there are rolling hills.”

Geoffrey Martinson, first Canadian male, second overall (29:35). He is a former UVic Vike and is based in Vancouver. Photo credit: Christopher Kelsall

The top athletes from Victoria were led by University of Victoria’s Matt Noseworthy, who finished 26thovereall and in the time of 31:39, bettering his 2017 performance by 19 seconds. Craig Odermatt, a masters runner in the 45-49 age-group finished as second Victorian. He finished in the time of 33:43 and won his age-group. He ran 33:39 in 2017.

The third Victoria resident racing in Vancouver was fellow masters-age runner Jim Finlayson who stopped the clock at 34:02.

“I am happy with that considering I had an injury in the winter and was off training for some time,” said Finlayson with a smile, knowing he could run faster with a good bout of training behind him. He owns a lifetime best in the low 29-range. Finlayson was also competing in the 45-49 age-category.

The top-three women from Victoria were Alison Hooper, also a UVic Vike, credited with a 35:06, while Vike assistant coach Marilyn Arsenault – a 50-year-old – recorded a time of 36:23. Elsabet Lapointe finished in 38:08.

Martinson, Finlayson and Odermatt are also former Vikes.

The Vancouver Sun Run is the third largest 10K road race in North America. For the 2018 edition, over 41,000 registered, while 32,583 people finished the race.

The Sun Run is race number one of three in three weeks on the coast with the TC10K in Victoria on April 29th followed by the BMO Vancouver Marathon and Half Marathon on May 6.

Full race results are available here>>