Photo credit – Louise Hodgson-Jones

Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps is challenging all mayor’s in the Capital Regional District and beyond to participate in the 30th Annual TC10K on April 28 in the first Mayor’s Challenge. The official launch today at Uptown saw two mayor’s in support – Oak Bay Mayor Kevin Murdoch and Fred Haynes from Saanich. Representing Mayor Helps was City of Victoria Councillor, Laurel Collins who announced the challenge.

The TC10K is one of the largest sporting events in Victoria and since 1990 has grown from 2,300 participants to approximately 8,000. Race Director Trish Fougner said numbers are up compared to this time last year and they could reach 9,000 registrations by race weekend.

The event should continue to see an increase as race day approaches as numbers for the official TC10K clinics are up in the 14 locations. Six-time winner of the TC10K, clinic coach and race ambassador Lucy Smith intends to visit many of them during the 14-week program that she designed. “When I first moved to Victoria the TC10K was the launching pad of my season every year,” she said today. “My children used to run in the kids run and now they are running the 10K. The addition of the clinics brings a whole new dimension and introduces people to the sport.”

“Lifers'” Birgit Fuerst and Maurice Tarrant – photo credit – Louise Hodgson-Jones

Two people who have participated in all of the TC10K’s since 1990 were on hand to tell their stories.

Birgit Fuerst recalls the first race was close to her heart. “It is an all-inclusive run with families and kids and now my grandkids run it.” Fuerst lost her husband to cancer last year and will be dedicating her run this year to him. At 89 Maurice Tarrant is a legend in Victoria running circles. An inductee of the Greater Victoria Sports Hall of Fame, he has held five age-class records on the course. “Each decade I have run and now walked with all different sections of people – for me it about the faces and paces!”

His training partner and daughter, Claire Tarrant-Rowley said: “This event continues to be one of Maurice’s favourite races and proudest accomplishments.”

The TC10K supports seven local charities: BC Cancer Agency, Every Step Counts, Help Fill a Dream, Heart and Stroke Foundation, Victoria Hospitals Foundation, Cystic Fibrosis and the Times Colonist Literacy Society. Individuals can donate when they register or be part of a team.

The BC Cancer Foundation has chosen their donations to go to the Carol Lalonde/Marlene Palmer Ovarian Cancer Research Fund, announced Patty Pitts, founder of the Fund. Two of her friends died of Ovarian cancer. “While honouring my two dear late friends, the fund is supporting breakthrough research here in Victoria to provide better outcomes for women battling this terrible disease.

For more information and to register go to www.tc10k.ca