The first race in the 2014 Timex BC Road Running Series and the Frontrunners Island Race Series – the Harriers Pioneer 8K – takes place on Sunday, January 12 at 11 am, and also hosts the 2014 BC 8K Championship. Last year’s winners Geoff Martinson and Natasha Wodak are returning, leading an impressive field of elite runners.
In addition to former Canadian World Track Championships representative Martinson, Canadian Marathon Champion Rob Watson, BC Endurance Project teammate Kevin Friesen, and Theo Hunt recently named to Canada's upcoming NACAC Cross Country team, should produce a close contest at the front. Aussie Adam Byles and Kiwi Nick Browne, both currently living in Vancouver, will add an international flavour. While top masters should be the old guard of Jim Finlayson, Craig Odermatt, and Bruce Deacon.
Recently crowned Canadian Cross Country Champion Wodak should be the clear favourite for the women, but expect a close battle for the remaining podium places. Dayna Pidhoresky is a former Canadian Half Marathon Champion recently moved to Vancouver, while Erin Burrett and Sabrina Wilkie will also be representing Canada at the NACAC Cross Country Championships in Trinidad next month. Lucy Smith will again be the one to beat in the masters.
“It's always great to kick off the year as the first race of the Timex BC Road Running Series, and being the host for the BC 8K Championships for 2014 is helping us attract some great elite runners,” says Heather Bretschneider, Co-Race Director of the Harriers Pioneer 8K. “This year is especially exciting as we celebrate the 35th Anniversary.”
The Harriers Pioneer 8K starts and finishes at Saanich Fairgrounds, 1528 Stelly’s X Road, Saanichton, BC. Runners can register at Frontrunners, 1200 Vancouver St on Saturday January 11, or on site on race day.