January 05, 2018
The 2018 BC Super Series kicks the year off on Sunday, at the Harriers Pioneer 8K in Sidney. The race is also the first in the 2018 Island Race Series. Competitive fields and a new course brings the promise of fast times if conditions are favourable. The womens field in particular is worthy of a national championship, featuring three representatives from last summers World Track & Field Championships, 6 of the top 14 from the recent Canadian Cross Country Championships, and a number of other notable athletes.
Event and national 8K record holder (25:28) Natasha Wodak returns, after competing in the 10,000m in London last summer. Fellow 10,000m representative, and defending champion Rachel Cliff is also back. And Dayna Pidhoresky returns to the roads for the first time since racing the marathon at the world championships.
Cliff and Wodak placed 3rd and 4th respectively at the 2017 Canadian Cross Country Championships. While not far behind them was Lindsay Carson (6th) and Erica Digby (8th). These latter two will represent Canada at the Pan American Cross Country Championship in El Salvador in March. Kirsten Lee (13th) and Alison Hooper (14th) also placed highly.
Sarah Inglis, winner of the Vancouver Eastside 10K; Robyn Mildren, winner of Boxing Day’s Hamilton 10 Miler; and fast improving Meg Lewis-Schneider round out a talented ten, with many more challengers at their heels, including top masters Marilyn Arsenault, Lucy Smith, Jillian Fong and Heather Macdonald. Smith and Fong are expected battle for BC and Canadian records in the F5054 age group.
The men’s race may be a little easier to predict, as Olympian and National Cross Country Champion Lucas Bruchet returns to defend his title. 2015 champion Theo Hunt, who will also be heading to El Salvador in March, may provide the closest competition for Bruchet. As well as UVic’s Matt Noseworthy, and BC Half Marathon champion Ian Searle.
Top masters include Craig Odermatt, Kevin O’Connor, and Mark Cryderman.
In addition to Wodak, Cliff, Smith, Bruchet and Hunt, other past champions expected to attend include event record holder (22:58) Carey Nelson, Bruce Deacon, Peter Butler, Steve Osaduik, and Cheryl Nichols.
Entries will be taken on race morning at North Saanich Middle School, with the race getting under way at 11am. Complete information at http://pih.bc.ca/race/1-pioneer-8k. Results will be posted at http://racedaytiming.ca/results.html.
The BC Super Series is a collaboration between BC Athletics and 12 of BC's best road races, which bring the best athletes in BC together in competition, and encourage participation from all abilities. http://www.bcathletics.org/BCSuperSeries/
Race #2 in the Series is the Steveston Icebreaker 8K, including the BC 8K Championship, on January 21.