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Bruce Gunner Shaw. Photo provided by Prairie Inn Harriers running club.

The 33rd annual Gunner Shaw Cross Country Classic race goes Saturday, Nov. 25 at Thetis Lake Park at 1:00 pm.

The 10K race, named after local elite runner, Bruce “Gunner” Shaw is a popular fixture for runners who enjoy muddy and wet conditions.

“I ran the course yesterday and the puddles are deep and full,” shared Race Director Bob Reid. “There is mud everywhere and conditions are extremely sloppy!  The race truly lives up to its name of “Gunner Shaw Classic” as it will be a classic experience for all involved.  Even today, it is pounding down with rain leading to excellent racing conditions!”

Exactly what Reid wants for this race, which is one of four events in the Thetis Lake Quad Series. Other races include Bob’s Magical Mile, Thetis Lake Relays and the Stewart Mountain 10-mile in December.

Thetis Lake is considered a popular place to train for runners who consider themselves serious. Some of the areas notable elite and Olympians have trained there including medallist Simon Whitfield, Ironman champion Lori Bowden, 19-time Canadian champion Lucy Smith and many others.

The race is notorious for a giant puddle near mid-way that is cold and long and sometimes frozen. Runners also get to finish knee deep with a 30-metre run through Thetis, before entering the finish chute.

Reid encourages runners to register today as online registration closes at 6:00 pm tonight.

The Prairie Inn Harriers running club 2017 Harriers Foundation Project is called the Sandy Auburn Environmental Studies Scholarship.  Auburn passed away in 2016 at the age of 59.  She had participated in all 32 years of the Gunner Shaw event as a runner or as a volunteer.

“In 2016, with donations and proceeds from the Gunner Shaw race and the New Year’s Day Memorial Run, the Harriers raised nearly $6,000 towards their target of $10,000 for the new scholarship at Camosun College,” shared Reid.

There will be a donation box at Gunner Shaw and at the New Year’s Day Run/Walk.

“I am confident that we will reach our goal by January 1, 2018 to initiate this worthwhile endeavor and help students entering the Environmental Studies field as a potential career.”