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Raven Run 2010

When the runners lined up for the start of the Raven Run in Salmon Arm, it was pretty much a foregone conclusion who would win, what with Trevor Jordan (M40-44) in the field. The Raven Run must be Trevor's favourite race, as he's run it 6 times and failed to win only in his first attempt, (ironically that was the year he ran his fastest time).

The downhill start is one of my favourites, so it was pedal to the metal for me, but when I passed Trevor, I still wasn't leading – the leader was 14 year old local runner Emmy Sim. Emmy is the sister of Starting Block 10K under-15 record holder Glynis Sim, who was also running, along with their older sister Meryn. It was gratifying to see so many younger runners in the field, with 5 of the top-20 men being under 19 as well. Emmy held on well to finish 26th overall and fourth woman in 48:01

Jordan was pushed for a time by Jesse Heckrodt (M20-29, third in 39:41) of Enderby, but Glenn Lear (first, M30-34, 38:34) eventually finished second. Jordan's winning time was 38:09, his slowest in his six races, but it was good enough to land him first on age grading as well (34:59). Brian Rourke (first,M60-64, tenth overall) of Kelowna was second A-G (35:16), and Jordan Sim (first, M50-54, eighth overall) of Kamloops had his best-ever finish at third A-G (37:57), beating this reporter by eight seconds. Rourke cemented his lead for the Greenaway Trophy, extending his lead to 15 points over Sergio Pio, who did not compete.

For the women, Simone Palmer (F35-39, sixteenth overall) of Revelstoke took her first victory in 46:38, and Anna Gleave (F40-44) of Vancouver was second in 47:23. Caroline Raine (F45-49, 47:44) of Kelowna was third. The top two competitors for the Muckle-Gader Cup did not compete, leaving the field wide open for Sandra Thompson(48:59,second, F55-59) to take the victory at 39:39 A-G, over the younger Linda Irvine (48:16, first, F55-59), who graded at 40:07. Min Rayson, (1:02:25,first, F65-69) took third at 42:21. With two races to be run, Diane Leonard (F65-69) holds a commanding lead for the Trophy, with only Cindy Rhodes (F50-54), scoring one less race, able to surpass her total.

Only three runners broke the 40 minute barrier, making this the toughest 10K in the series, but I say, by far the most fun! Slower runners may appreciate the scenery, but all I saw was pavement, as the downhill start gives way to a pair of steep hills named Grinder's Grind and Croskery's Climb in honour of the founders of the race, before closing with a fast downhill section of about 3K. Attendance was up significantly over last year at 130 fInishers, and rookie Race Director Dietmar Penkert and his crew of volunteers did a fabulous job organizing the race. The watermelon, cherries, yogurt, and other goodies at the finish were delicious, and the handcrafted wooden medals were a nice touch. The Roots and Blues music festival is also in town on the race weekend, giving runners another reason to visit Salmon Arm.

The series now takes a short break until the Bike Barn 10K in Penticton on September 12. This flat two lap course is tailor-made for fast times, so we expect some hot competition as the series winds down and runners vie for series placings. On-line sign-up for this and the final race (Peak to Beak in Kelowna September 19) is available now on the sidebar to the left of your screen.

Rick Jenkner reporting.

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