RUNNING CHAMP Ed Ansems added another first place medal to his collection after coming first in his age category at the 10km BC championships in Vancouver.
The 67-year-old runner ran the 10km championship and beat out all other competitors aged 65-69 in the province.
“I’m very pleased with the fact that I came first in my age group, but somewhat surprised as I was not in my best running condition,” said Ansems.
“Lucky for me that I did not have to run as fast as I usually do to finish first. Sometimes you just catch a break.”
The championship race was hosted in conjunction with the Summerfast 10km race, but was still relatively small. Around 400 competitors came out to run the course under the unrelenting summer sun which Ansems says slowed him down.
“It was a hot race and the first three miles were all in the sun. I don’t do all that well in the sun,” he explained of the race run around the seawall in Stanley Park.
A master runner and well-seasoned at this course, Ansems explained that he felt he could have done better.
He has ran this race for the last few years and placed within the top five each time (winning first in other distance categories in recent years), but even with his first-place medal in hand he wishes he had cut his time down.
“When I started out, I was running the pace that I thought I was, about seven minutes per mile,” Ansems recounted.
“I felt good, I was running smoothly and then I got to the last mile and this guy passed me and he beat me in the end by some seconds,” he said.
However, the runner who passed him was from France and he did not qualify for the BC Championship, so Ansems took first place.
“I usually don’t like to win this way, normally you’d win overall,” he said, explaining that he wants to train harder for his next half-marathon in Las Vegas next November.
Still, this is just the latest medal for the successful long-distance runner.
In 2014, he came in first in his age bracket at the Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas race despite being sick with bronchitis at the competition.
Ansems started running marathons back in 1979 after moving to Terrace to start teaching earlier in the decade. At the height of his fitness, he was running up to 120 miles a week and finishing marathons in under two and a half hours.
And since then he hasn’t stopped running, not even to take a break.
“I don’t take breaks, I’ve ran my whole life and I’ve only taken a couple of months off in any stretch,” Ansems said. “And I will continue to train for races as long as I can.”