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Matthew Travaglini post-race interview at 2019 Vancouver Sun Run.

At Sunday’s 30th annual TC10K, expect Calgary’s Matthew Travaglini to challenge defending champion Haron Sirma of Kenya for the win.

Last year, Travaglini finished fourth behind Kenyans who went 1-2-3. Sirma was followed in by two-time winner Daniel Kipkoech and Stephen Kersh. They finished in 29:49, 29:59 and 30:00 respectively. Travaglini finished in 30:25.

Kersh, at publication time, does not appear to be registered.

On Sunday, April 14th, the 26-year-old Travaglini finished in fourth place in the 35th annual Vancouver Sun Run. Two of the three athletes who finished ahead of him are not racing the TC10K. Training partner Trevor Hofbauer will be racing the Hamburg Marathon the following week, so he is out. Hofbauer finished second in the Sun Run. The winner, Surrey’s Justin Kent is now focussing on his track season. Only Sirma will be racing the TC10K of the athletes who finished ahead of Travaglini.

In Vancouver, Sirma rolled across the line in 29:32. It was a close race. Travaglini finished three seconds back in 29:35.

“Yes, Trevor has the marathon coming up. I want to get into the Portland track meet in a few weeks, but the next race I am looking forward to is the TC10K in Victoria,” said Travaglini. “It’s a beautiful course in a beautiful city, it’s really nice on the island.”

On the streets of Victoria, Kipkoech won the TC10K in 2016 and 2017, while Sirma won in 2018. The last time an Island-raised athlete won the race was when Steve Osaduik of Nanaimo took three-consecutive titles in 2004, 2005 and 2006. Erik Kiauka, a Victoria resident at the time, won in 2008. The last time a Canadian won was when Vancouver resident Kelly Wiebe, who is originally from Regina, won in 2015 with the third-fastest ever performance at 29:08 – and fastest on the course through 2018. The event record (on a different course) is 28:47 by Kenyan Simon Chemwoiya in 1995. The course is altered slightly for 2019 due to road construction.

Travaglini, should he win, would be the first Canadian since Wiebe. Also in the mix is former UVic Vike Matt Noseworthy and former triathlete, Andrew Russell. Noseworthy didn’t have the race he was expecting in Vancouver finishing 34th overall in the time of 32:40, he was looking to run under 32-minutes.

The two battled each other during the Vancouver Island Race Series with Russell taking their last head-to-head race at the Sooke 10K in 32:03 for first to 32:23 for Noseworthy for second. Both will be looking for better performances Sunday.

Travaglini should finish first or second and right around 30:00.

Kipkoech cannot be counted out, however, he was beaten by Travaglini in Vancouver.

Justin Kent, Trevor Hofbauer, Haron Sirma and Matthew Travaglini at 2019 Vancouver Sun Run, Sunday, April 14th. Photo credit: Christopher Kelsall

The elite list as per Tuesday, April 23:

*M = Master over 40
*D = Defending champion

Men:

Haron Sirma – D
Matthew Travaglini
Daniel Kipkoech
Kip Kangogo – M
Paul Kimugul
Keenan Viney
Ben Weir
Andrew Russell
Colin Fewer – M
Roman Justinen
Joshua Potvin
Nick Walker
Jim Finlayson – M
Stefan Daniel
Craig Odermatt – M
James Cook
Mark Cryderman – M

Women:

Read the women’s pre-race story, here>>

Dayna Pidhoresky – D
Sarah Inglis
Lindsay Carson
Robyn Mildren
Malindi Elmore
Bridget Pyke
Shari Boyle – M
Jen Miller – M
Melissa Ross
Jen Moroz
Julia Tschanz
Johana Karienkei