OTTAWA - The 2009 Canadian Marathon and Wheelchair Marathon Championships will take place in the nation's capital on Sunday May 24 as part of the Ottawa Race Weekend Marathon. The Wheelchair race begins at 6:55am followed by the able-bodied race at 7:00am.
A number of elite competitors will line up at the Elgin and Laurier start line with a championship on their mind, and to punch their ticket to Berlin. Matt Loiselle of Toronto, ON looks to add another 2009 title to his name after capturing the Half Marathon Championship last month in Montreal. Other athletes who will be looking to bring it are Steve Osaduik of Nanaimo, BC, Dylan Wykes of Kingston, ON and Reid Coolsaet of Hamilton, ON; Coolsaet is the 2007 5000 metres Canadian Champion, he will be making his marathon debut in Ottawa.
Lioudmila Kortchaguina of Thornhill, ON finished second at the 2009 Half Marathon Championships; she will be looking for nothing less than a victory at Ottawa Race Weekend. Kortchaguina has won four of five marathon titles in Ottawa (2002, 2004, 2006, and 2007). She was a member of the Canadian national team that competed at the 2007 World Championships in Osaka, Japan.
The highlight of the wheelchair field is Clayton Gerein of Pilot Butte, Saskatchewan. Gerein finished 6th in the Marathon at the 2008 Paralympic Games in Beijing, China.
The Ottawa Marathon is the final qualifying event to earn a spot on the 2009 Marathon World Cup team. Athletics Canada has teamed up with the Ottawa Marathon and the Scotiabank Toronto Marathon in an effort to qualify teams for the 2009 Marathon World Cup being contested within the 12th IAAF World Championships in Athletics held in Berlin later this summer. The post-Olympic year is an appropriate time to open Athletics Canada's criteria to support entering teams in major international competitions with the objectives of:
- Improving the marathon event depth and performance in Canada leading towards the 2012 and 2016 Olympic Games
- Encouraging Canadian athletes to participate in major Canadian marathons
- Preparing athletes for the on-demand performance necessary to compete at major Championships
- To select athletes achieving the level of performance necessary to be top 12 in the World
The following athletes have qualified to be selected to the Canadian Marathon World Cup team (Pending proof of fitness) going into the Marathon Championships in Ottawa.
|Men || Women|
|Jon Brown, 2:12.27 || Tara Quinn-Smith, 2:33.57|
|Dylan Wykes, 2:16.20 || Nicole Stevenson, 2:41.01|
|Giitah Macharia, 2:16.54 || Lioudmila Kortchaguina, 2:30.43|
|Matt McInnes, 2:16.58 || Stephanie Hood, 2:35.09|
|Danny Kassap, 2:15.20 || Cheryl Murphy, 2:43.00|
|Andrew Smith, 2:16.14 || |
More information on the 2009 Canadian Marathon Championships is available at Athletics.ca.