© Copyright - 2017 - Victoria Sports News
With the wintry conditions behind us - at least for now - and the snow and ice melting in the hard-hit Cowichan Valley, the second race in the Vancouver Island Race Series - the Cobble Hill 10k - is all set for Sunday. One of the oldest races in the Island Series, Cobble Hill is celebrating an anniversary of sorts as it is ten years since the course changed to its current route, starting from George Bonner School.
In its two previous incarnations it was called the Cherry Point 10k and then the Mill Bay 10K. Ceevacs Roadrunners, who host the race, have been involved since the 80's.
"When it was the Cherry Point 10k (when young runners like Bob Reid, Maurice Tarrant, and current Ceevacs coach Sheron Chrysler were notable participants!) the course was a loop around rural roads south of Cowichan Bay," says Race Director, Ian Milne. "As participation increased a new site to host was needed, and in the early 90's the race moved to Brentwood College and became the Mill Bay 10k, the route was an out and back along the waterfront south of Mill Bay. This was a scenic and popular course, but once again safety and traffic concerns forced a move, and in 2008 the race moved to George Bonner School and became the Cobble Hill 10k. It still features scenic rural roads and a flat course that is conducive to some fast times."
Milne is expecting a strong field particularly in the women's race. "We have some strong runners throughout the field and could see some age grade records fall. We can expect good competition on the ladies side with 2015 winner Alison Hooper returning to challenge the 2016 winner, Mill Bay native Jen Miller. Of local note is Ceevacs' Hazura Sangha running in the 80-84 age category - this is Hazura's 149th race in the Island Series, stretching back to the 1980's."
Course records are there for the taking with the open male set by Geoff Martinson in 2013 (30:46) and female by Cheryl Murphy in 2008 in 34:44. Murphy set the masters record the following year in 35:37. Craig Odermatt hold the masters male record in 32:40 (2010).
Runners can register online until 6pm, Friday January 20 at www.islandseries.org or on race day. Race registration until January 20 is $30 for adults and $25 for students. Race day registration is open on Sunday until 10:15 am at a cost of $40. Race organizers advise to get to the school early to register to avoid disappointment.