TC10K start. Photo credit: Christopher Kelsall.

© Copyright – 2018 – Victoria Sports News

The Times Colonist 10K, better known as the TC10K, has had a reconfiguration of the management that operates the race. Out is divisive race manager Joe Dixon and in is Trish Fougner, a former University of Victoria Vikes 800-metre specialist and wife of Vikes head coach Brent Fougner.

Two years ago, long-time race manager Cathy Noel stepped aside to focus on management of the GoodLife Fitness Victoria Marathon as well as the Goddess Run that she created six years prior. The move made way for a new race manager in Joe Dixon. Dixon lasted just two years before moving to Calgary to focus on his triathlon race management company Dynamic Race Events.

Brent Fougner has been involved with the TC10K formerly named Garden City 10K in one capacity or another from the early days of the event including being president of the preceding society to RunSport which was named Victoria International Running Society (VIRS).

In a release from the RunSport Society, they wrote, “Runsport Society has announced changes to its management team. Executive and Race Director Joe Dixon, co-owner of Dynamic Race Events (Dynamic), has resigned from his positions within the Society.”

Falling participation numbers

For the 2018 edition, the race, according to the website RaceStats.org saw a continuation of the trend towards lower participation levels. Just 6,748 people walked or ran the 10K event. According to BC Athletics (the provincial governing body of athletics), the number is slightly higher at 6,796.

In 2017, the TC10K had a total of approximately 8900 registrations (10K + kids), there were 6,832 timed 10K finishers. In 2018, there were 8800 total registrations (10K + kids) and 6,796 timed 10K finishers.

According to Racestats.org, the 2017 edition of the race saw 886 less than the 7,724 who participated in 2016 and 715 fewer than the 8,439 that crossed the finish line in 2015. The race has shrunk every year for nine consecutive years, dropping from its peak of 10,615 from 2010 (not including kids).

The race held steady for four years with 9,942 participants in 2009, 10,615 in 2010, 10,151 for 2011 and 10,004 in 2012.

The race, which helped fund the professional Victoria Track Classic, dropped the track meet altogether under Dixon. The model is similar to the Vancouver Sun Run, which provides funding for the Harry Jerome Track Classic that takes place at Swangard Stadium. Until recently, the two track meets were part of the Canada-wide National Track League. Edmonton since faltered – a meet more focussed on sprints. Remaining are two standalone events, the Harry Jerome Track Classic and the Speed River Inferno that takes place in Guelph, ON.

Victoria is currently without a high-level track meet, a particularly galling fact considering Victoria is often referred to as one of two running centres in Canada (Greater Vancouver is the other). Victoria is home to at least a dozen national sports or national teams. Athletics Canada, the national governing body of running, operates a western hub in the city called AC West Hub.

Perhaps RunSport as a society in conjunction with DeFrias Management Group, a marketing and management consulting firm, who are also involved, will turn the TC10K event around with Trish Fougner doing the heavy lifting.

City-wide clinics will soon be underway. Check with your local recreation centre. The TC10K will take place on Sunday, April 28, 2019. The Vancouver Sun Run will take place on Sunday, April 14, 2019.

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