Knee Knacker event summary press release
For Immediate Release
The 25th running of the Knee Knackering North Shore Trail Run (“the Knee Knacker”) took place on Saturday, July 13, 2013, with ideal conditions on the trail and in the air. This was in stark contrast to the warm, muggy conditions of 2012. The trail itself was free of snow and the recent warm, dry weather had firmed up most of the muddy patches left behind. The race was on! The only thing standing in the way of the runners was 30 knarly miles along the trails of Vancouver’s North Shore mountains, with over 16,000 feet of elevation change.
The men’s field was one of the deepest in the history of the race. Aaron Heidt’s course record time of 4:39:52 (set in 2009) was in jeopardy all day. Gary Robbins, Mike Murphy and Nick Elson were at or near the front of the race all day long. With just over 2km to go they were all within sight of one another on Indian River Road. Murphy pushed to nearly catch Robbins, who responded with a surge to pull away for good as the course jumped back into the trail down to Deep Cove. Robbins’ winning time of 4:41:28 was second only to Heidt’s record, which is safe for another year. Murphy and Elson finished close behind in 4:42:32 and 4:44:07, respectively. These three results now rank in the top five fastest times in the 25 year history of the race.
Murphy also took top honours in the Men’s 40-49 age group, eclipsing the Men’s Masters record, set by Kevin Titus in 2003, by five seconds. Former race champion Peter Findlay completed the race for 16th time, winning the Men’s 50-59 age group in 5:33:35 and good enough for 10th place overall. Twenty-three time finisher Neil Wakelin finished in 7:27:18 to take the Men’s 60-69 age group. The race also introduced a new 70+ age group for the men this year. This was captured by one of 1989’s “Original 8” runners – David Brown, completing his 21st Knee Knacker in 9:42:15.
The women’s race was a different story with North Vancouver’s Ann Lanari leading from wire-to-wire to take the win in a time of 5:29:13. Lanari finished in 8th place overall, and her time was the 5th fastest ever recorded by a female in 25 years of Knee Knacker racing. Second place went to previous race champion Suzanne Evans in a time of 5:40:58, and good enough for 13th place overall. The next runner to come in after Evans was first-time racer Kim Magnus in a time of 5:43:29 to round out the women’s podium.
Evans also claimed victory in the Women’s 40-49 age group. Her time of 5:40:58 bettered the Women’s Masters record, set by Patricia Jensen in 2004, by almost four minutes. Former Knee Knacker race committee member Amanda Barlow took top honours in the Women’s 50-59 age group in a time of 7:17:38. The Women’s 60-69 age group was taken by first-time racer Karen Craigie in a time of 8:59:29.
Proceeds from this year’s race benefit the North Shore Search and Rescue (NSR) team. This year the event continued with a fundraising component to encourage racers to collect individual donations to support NSR. By race day, over $8,700 had been donated and the Knee Knacker event has now raised almost $84,000 since its inception for local charities and non-profit organizations in the community.
A record 244 runners started the Knee Knacker just above Horseshoe Bay at Nelson Creek Park. Of the starters, 237 arrived at Panorama Park in Deep Cove by 4:00pm (10 hours). Keith Wakelin won the race outright in 2001. This year he completed his 20th Knee Knacker in 6:15:13, becoming the fifth person to reach this significant milestone. Four entrants also finished their 10th Knee Knacker: Patricia Jensen, Jamie Stirling, Scott Riddell and Kyla Adams joined an exclusive group of 43 other runners who have previously attained this milestone.
The 25th running of the race was celebrated in many ways, including the honouring of three of “Original 8” runners from 1989’s inaugural Knee Knacker. Returning to compete and complete the race in 2013 were Enzo Federico, Brendan Kennelly and David Brown.
Complete results are available online at www.kneeknacker.com
Kelsy Trigg, Race Director