Curran repeats in ideal conditions at Okanagan Marathon

Calgary runner wins Kelowna race, Rhonda Loo of Alberta the top woman

Calgary's James Curran crosses the finish line Sunday morning at Kelowna City Park to win the BMO Okanagan Marathon for the second year in a row. More than 3

It wasn’t as fast as his first victory here, nor was the field as challenging as it was a year ago in Kelowna.

All the same, Calgary’s James Curran was happy to make it two in a row at the BMO Okanagan Marathon on an ideal fall morning on the streets of Kelowna.

Curran, who is originally from Cork, Ireland, completed the 42-kilometre course in two hours 51 minutes 10 seconds.

Curran led from start to finish and, with no serious challengers on his heels, finished more than six minutes back of his pace in 2011.

“It’s a great race, I ran faster last year, but I didn’t need to push it this time around and I had enough in me to win it,” said Curran. “I am pleased to repeat as champion and I will be back again next year to defend. Kelowna is a beautiful place to run and the volunteers and supporters on the course were amazing. It’s special to win two in a row.”

Two Calgary runners, Adam Kahtava  and Donovan Thorkelson, finished second and third respectively in 2:53:28 and 2:56:45.

The women’s champion, Newell Lake, Alberta’s Rhonda Loo, wasn’t far off the men’s pace crossing the line in 3:00:40 in her first try at the Okanagan.

“I have friends in Summerland and wherever I travel I look for a race,” said Loo. “This was happening, so I thought I’ll do it and I’m happy I did. It’s a great race, I’m happy I won, even though I would have liked to have run a sub-3.”

Kelowna’s Stacie Carrigan, who finished third last year, knocked seven minutes off her 2011 time to place second in 3:13:47. Liza Burgess, also of Kelowna, finished third at 3:16:59.

“I’m extremely pleased,” said Carrigan, 30, is originally from Osoyoos. “I was just hoping to do better than 3:17, so I think I exceeded that limit by quite a bit, for sure.”

Carrigan will now prepare for the New York City Marathon next month.

In the half marathon, Penticton’s Jeff Symonds won the men’s title for the third time in four years with a clocking of 1:13:56.

As a homegrown Okanagan boy, it’s a race Symonds does his best not to miss.

“It’s great to come out an support the local events, you know the fact it’s just a stone’s throw away makes it a no-brainer to come up here,” said Symonds, 27, who is also a competitive triathlete. “To have an event of this magnitude and to see the numbers of people participating, it creates an unbelievable atmosphere that I want to be part of year after year.”

Following in second place was Simon Stewart of Edmonton at 1:19:12, with Skeets Morel of Vernon placing third at 1:20:27.

Karen Ruckman of Burnaby was the women’s winner with a time of 1:28:55, Kelowna’s Tracy Dayman came in second with a time of 1:31:24, and Mary Edgar of Vernon finished third in 1:31:50.

The 10 k men’s was won by Sean Bergman from Kelowna in 34:47, followed by Nicholas Mottl of Creston in 34:55 and Joshua Sissons from Blackfalds, Alta. in 35:41.  First place Kelowna’s Deborah Buhlers was the women’s 10 k Kelowna who finished in 37:32 on behalf of her grandmother, who passed away during the week. Canoe’s Glynis Sim came in second at 38:19, followed by Amy Buzikievich of Summerland at 39:32.

Wearing bib No. 100, 58-year-old Richard Stewart of Prince George completed his goal of completing his 100th marathon in a time of 5:29:56.

He was thrilled with the support he felt on the course. “It was emotional near the finish line, I had so many people cheering me on. It has been an incredible experience for me and I have met wonderful people and close friends along the road.”

More than 3,100 participants took part in the weekend’s events, which featured the Running Room’s Free Friendship Run, 5K, and BMO ABC Kids Run on Saturday, and the marathon, half marathon and 10 k on Sunday.

 

Just Posted

Good Natured Books celebrates first book launch in Kelowna

David Allen, the author of A Song for Swinging, is signing books at Wentworth Music today

Road closures in effect

Kelowna - The Old Vernon, Rutland and Acland Road intersection will close Nov. 20

Wear neon for Glow Night

Kelowna - The annual Glow Night is back Nov. 18

‘Listen to your gut’ urges injured skier

Mike Shaw was told he’d never walk again after an accident four years ago, but he defied the odds

Small grass fire sparks in West Kelowna

Fire crews quickly douse blaze in ditch on Friday afternoon

Flag person struck by car

RCMP investigating incident involving female traffic control person and senior driver

Pine beetles from Jasper National Park moving into commercial forest

In 2014, beetle activity went from a few spots around Jasper’s townsite to rampant

VIDEO: Tragically Hip members, Alex Trebek receive Order of Canada

Newest recipients join 6,897 Canadians such as Christine Sinclair, Graham Greene and Mark Messier

AC/DC’s Malcolm Young dies at 64

‘Malcolm was a songwriter, guitarist, performer, producer and visionary who inspired many.’

Rockets calm Hurricanes for 7th straight win at home

Dillon Dube scored twice Friday to lead Rockets to WHL victory over Lethbridge

‘I will now live in consistent fear’: Allan Schoenborn granted escorted leaves

The Merritt man was deemed not criminally responsible in the killing of his three children in 2008

Guns and drugs seized in Kamloops RCMP blitz

Kamloops Mounties and the gang unit seize drugs and make arrests in two-day blitz

Hammy the deer dodges conservation officers in Prince Rupert

The famous Prince Rupert hammock deer maintains his purple threads

‘No shirt, no service, no Canada’

Shirtless Tacoma man arrested after Canadian border officials say they found meth in rental vehicle

Most Read