Race organizers expect Olympics year to turn up the heat on the race course.
May 8, 2012 – OTTAWA – Two Canadian Summer Olympics qualifiers will compete with new and returning elite racers in the 10K distance on the May 26-27 Tamarack Homes Ottawa Race Weekend.
“Adrenalin always runs a little higher on Race Weekend during Olympic years,” says Manny Rodrigues, Elite Athlete Coordinator for Run Ottawa. “What’s great about road races is they are one of the few sports where recreational and Olympic-level athletes share a course.”
Olympics-bound Canadian team mates Reid Coolsaet and Eric Gillis will join an impressive line-up of racers. At 32, Coolsaet is at the peak of his talent, with a best time of 28:08 set last year in Toronto. He also won the inaugural Yonge Street 10K race on April 22 in 28:35. Gillis, also 32, placed fourth last year in the Ottawa 10K distance.
The Canadian duo will have to keep an eye on 24-year-old Ethiopian Tadese Tola, who boasts a personal best time of 27:48 set in 2009 in New York City. Also returning for a crack at first place is Mohamed El Hachimi, who placed second in Ottawa in 2010 with a time of 28:12 and fifth overall last year.
“Our line-up of women racers this year is equally exciting,” says Rodrigues. “It’s early to tell whether either the men or women will set race course or other records this year, but one thing we can promise is an exciting night.”
Among the women runners is 26-year-old Ethiopian Alemitu Abera. A 2:23 marathoner, she’ll be looking to improve her 10K time of 32:46. Abera will share the start line with 38-year-old Samira Raif, who ran a 32:48 personal best in Ottawa last year.
“Our most promising Canadian competitor in the 10K race is 25-year-old Tarah Korir, wife of the 2012 Boston Marathon winner,” says Rodrigues. “In April she won the Yonge Street 10K race in Toronto with a time of 32:06.”
Also competing is American Lindsey Scherf, 25, whose best time is 32:51.
The Ottawa Marathon elite roster will be announced May 15, 2012.
About the Tamarack Homes Ottawa Race Weekend
The 2011 edition of the Ottawa Race Weekend welcomed 40,000 participants in seven races, including the marathon, the half-marathon, the 10K, 5K, family 2K and Y Kids marathon. The Ottawa Marathon and Ottawa 10K are both designated Silver Label IAAF events by the International Amateur Athletic Federation (IAAF). Run Ottawa, the organization behind the Ottawa Race Weekend, is run by a volunteer Board of Directors, and is dedicated to promoting the sport of running and enhancing the health and well-being of our community by organizing distinctive world-class and local races, and managing an active, membership-based running club.