Runner motivated by marathon win

Nanaimo's Erin Burrett won the Victoria Marathon last Sunday, her first-ever marathon, and made her way into the race's record books.

Erin Burrett nailed it on her first try.

The Nanaimo runner won the Victoria Marathon last Sunday, her first-ever marathon, and made her way into the race’s record books.

“It just all fell into place on the right day and it was a positive experience for my first,” said Burrett.

It was a finish she won’t forget. She ran in second place nearly all the way, steadily reeling in leader Lioudmila Kortchaguina until the defending champ heard Burrett’s coach calling instructions, looked back and proceeded to pick up the pace.

“With a K left, I still wasn’t sure I was going to catch her,” said Burrett. “My coach was yelling at me to go after her. I yelled back at him a few words, telling him to be quiet, basically.”

With about 700 metres left, Burrett realized she’d closed the gap again, felt like she had another level, and blew by Kortchaguina to snap the tape and win by about 20 seconds.

“When I crossed the line, it was release of the fact that that I had just run my first marathon, that I’d run it in a good time, and that I had actually won the race,” Burrett said.

Her time of two hours, 39 minutes, 17 seconds was the fastest-ever time by a Canadian woman at the event, and her eighth-overall finish was the highest-ever placing by a woman.

The results are motivating. Right after the race, Burrett was already looking into other races that could yield fast times, both at the half-marathon and marathon distances. She’s talking about chasing an Olympic standard time by 2020 and in the meantime she’s targeting the half-marathon world championships in Wales in March and a marathon in the Netherlands in April.

“I’ve got some pretty big goals that have been decided on for spring,” she said.

For more on the Victoria Marathon, please click here.

sports@nanaimobulletin.com