There’s a lot of new royalty of Westwood after another fast-paced Run for the Mountain 6K.
Andrew Howard of Courtenay was the overall winner in 21 minutes, 21 seconds to become King of Westwood, while Melissa Ross of Nanaimo was the fastest female, finishing in 23:33 for the Queen of Westwood title.
Craig Odermatt and Victoria Fiddick were the masters division winners and Miles Huynh and Madison Heisterman were the youth division winners. Other than Heisterman, now a three-time defending champ, the others were all first-time winners at the event. Winning Empire of Westwood was the Oceanside Track and Field Club, including Huynh, Yosef Bassett, Jackson Isnor, Linden Kaps and Jacob Bassett.
Howard said this was his fourth or fifth time running the race, and said he wasn’t quite sure why he was able to break through and win this year.
“You’ve got to picture the finish,” he said. “I always think about it a week before and kind of have that mindset of trying to do well.”
Shelby Drope, runner-up this year in 21:31, raced to the early lead.
“I passed him the first kilometre and I just tried to stay up there,” Howard said. “They were catching me near the end, I think, that’s what they told me. You just listen for people catching up behind you and you run scared.”
It was a beautiful day, but not a record-breaking one. Race director Mike Thibodeau had hoped the 10th annual race would set a new standard for participation and although online registration was the highest ever, there were fewer walk-ups this year.
The Run for the Mountain was held Saturday at Westwood Lake Park. The run/walk is a fundraiser for Mount Benson through the Nanaimo and Area Land Trust.
The top 50 finishers:
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|19||VIU volleyball No. 9||25:22|