Monday, November 5, 2012

2012 BC Cross Country Championships

Last Saturday (Oct 27) I caught the 8:30am ferry over to Vancouver for the BC XC Championships which were taking place at Clearbrook Park in Abbotsford. Having taken the ferry so many times as a kid, I tend to not leave my car whenever I drive over. Instead, I had a nice little nap, waking up minutes before the announcement to return to the vehicle car deck as we were approaching Horseshoe Bay. I woke up to find the weather had turned foggy and it was pouring with rain. That made for a fun 75’ drive out to the race site.

I arrived extremely early (3 hours before my race) and the parking lot was packed with families due to the younger kids races so I opted to find a washroom elsewhere (thanks Starbucks) and then proceeded to sit in my car and read a book until about 75’ before my race. At that point, parking opened up right next the park. During the time in my car it absolutely poured with rain. It definitely looked as though it was going to be a very wet race! Perfect for XC.

I picked up my number and chatted with a few people, along with catching up with 2 of my favourite high school athletes Rebecca and Miryam who were racing in the Youth/Junior category an hour before me. While they were racing, I proceeded to warm up and found their races very inspiring. Both of the girls ran very well with Miryam easily winning her Youth category and Becca placing 5th in the Junior category by running up an age group to qualify for her first Team BC!

Before long, I found myself on the start line among 27 other women. These included race favorite Natasha Wodak Fraser, Rachel Cliff who has recently moved back to BC, plus Jessica Smith who represented Canada in the Olympic 800m. It was definitely going to be a tough race!

My race was about 6.2km and consisted of 3 loops. The first loop I went out and felt strong. The course consisted mostly of flat grass fields with some gravel, mud, long farm like grass at one point plus 2 hills. One hill was short and steep and the other was about 3 x’s longer and steep as well. The first hill didn’t have a whole lot of impact, but the second hill definitely did. Not to mention the second hill was pretty muddy which resulted in some slipping. 

After the 1st loop
 Photo credit: Craig Odermatt

I hurt on the 2nd loop and lost some ground with Anne-Marie passing me at the end of the 1st loop and then Shauna passing me on the 2nd. I hung as close to Shauna as I could, consistently telling myself that I was the half marathoner and I had the endurance. Whatever works right? After the 2nd hill on the 2nd loop I felt a bit out of breath and light headed but thankfully that passed. 

After the 2nd loop (with Shauna)
Photo credit: Craig Odermatt

I was able to overtake Shauna after the 1st hill on the 3rd loop (I think) and pushed hard to try and catch Jessica who appeared to be hurting and was losing ground fast. The whole time in the race I was counting my position. I knew I was in 9th and the 7th person from BC (the top 6 qualify for Team BC), but unfortunately, I ran out of time and couldn’t catch her. I finished exactly that, 9th overall and 7th from BC. Unless one of the top 6 decides not to accept their spot on the Team, I will just miss out. Oh well, life goes on!

Finishing strong
Photo credit: Craig Odermatt

I must say that the rain did stop before my race but there were plenty of big puddles along the course. As a recap, Natasha won, followed by Rachel and then Fiona Benson. Results are found here.  

Here is a video recap of the race. I think I need to work on my hill climbs as they look mighty sad after watching this. Video is courtesy of

1 comment:

Ruth said...

I always enjoy reading your blog. Very inspirational.