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The 2014 April Fool’s Run ain’t no joke!

2014 BMO Sunshine Coast April Fool's Run

Photo credit: Len Soet

This past Sunday, April 6, over 600 participants gathered in Gibsons, BC, on the Sunshine Coast, for what has become a tradition for almost 40 years; the April Fool’s Run. Unlike recent years, which have almost seen the snow line at the race course level, this year, Mother Nature provided perfect race conditions, with fresh, moist air, cool temperatures and a mix of sun and cloud. It was the perfect day for a perfect race.

The half marathon race is a favourite for many Vancouver area residents and locals. The race has a strong sense of community and is deeply supported throughout the community, from the volunteers from Vancouver who got up at 3am to set-up the course, to the local vendors who supply goods and services to help put on the race.

The course starts in Gibsons and makes its way through residential neighbourhoods, quiet country roads and along the highway, ending up at a beautiful park beside the beach in Sechelt.

Held on or near April Fools day, the race is anything but a joke. The course is a constant battle of long, steep, up hills, and incredibly fast down hills. Overall, the course is a net down hill, which results in some extremely good personal bests and some of Canada’s top race times on a half marathon course!

Many of the participants went all out in race gear. Some dressed up in amusing costumes hoping for a chance to win the costume contest, while others donned this or past years technical race shirts in their show of support for the beloved race. The coveted blue BMO race gloves were also all the rage, included with every race package entry, courtesy of title sponsor BMO.

2014 BMO Sunshine Coast April Fools Run finishers medal

As participants crossed the finish line at the end of the 21.1 km (13.3 mi) race, they were presented with the BMO April Fool’s Run finishers medal.

Finishing in first place was David Jackson of Abbotsford, BC, with a time of 1:09:09, and in close second at 1:09:12, Kevin O’Connor, of Vancouver, BC. The first place female finisher was Gibson’s very own Kimberley Doerksen, crossing the line at 1:14:53, followed by second place female finisher, Ellie Greenwood at 1:17:42.

The April Fool’s Run is a race to put on the annual race calendar. With being just four weeks before the BMO Vancouver Marathon, it’s a great dress rehearsal to test your race day skills.

Personal results:

Overall: 72 / 505

Gun Time: 1:37:57

Chip Time: 1:37:57

Pace: 4:39 / km

Men’s Overall: 56 / 234

Men’s 30-39: 18 / 56


2013 BMO Sunshine Coast April Fools Run Results

April Fools Run 2013 Finish Brian WebbApril In the days leading up to the BMO Sunshine Coast April Fools Run, the constant downpour of rain didn’t dampen the spirits of the would-be half marathon participants.  As runners geared up for the Sunday, April 7, 2013 race, the overcast skies remained dry and kept temperatures cool, creating ideal running conditions for the 36th annual race.

The 628 participants lined up for the 9:30am start in Gibson’s for their 21.1km (13.3mi), journey from Gibsons to Sechelt. The first place overall and men’s finisher was Nicholas Browne, followed by the 2012 first place finisher, David Palermo, both from Vancouver. For the second year in a row, Lisa Brooking took home the first place women’s finish.

Watch the highlights video by Keith Dunn, of the top finishers:

Personal Results (new half marathon person best):

  • Finish Time: 1:36:28
  • Overall: 62/ 627
  • Men’s Overall Finish: 51 / 235
  • Men 30 – 34: 12/29
  • Average Pace: 4:35m/km

 


BMO April Fool’s Run Next Weekend

bmofoolsrunlogo2013-595x595On Sunday, April 7, 2013, runners will lace-up for the annual BMO April Fool’s Run, a beautiful point-to-point half marathon from Gibsons to Sechelt on B.C.’s Sunshine Coast.

Registrations are being accepted online until midnight on April 1, and will cap-out at 700 participants. Race packages include bib, timing chip, a Cytomax stick pack, the coveted blue BMO race gloves, and race shirt/jacket (if ordered).

Race package pick-up will be available in Vancouver on Thursday, April 4 at the Denman Running Room from noon till 6:00pm. The first 200 people to pick up their race packages at Denman Running Room will receive a free bottle of Muscle MLK.

Participants can also pick-up at the Gibson’s & Area Community Centre (700 Park Road), on Saturday, April 6 from noon to 5:00pm, or Sunday, April 7 from 8:00am – 9:15am.

Although the race time has been pushed out to a 9:30am start to accommodate participants coming from Vancouver on the early Sunday morning ferry, staying for the entire weekend is a great option. The official race hotel is the Cedars Inn, located just a few blocks from the start line. There are also B&B’s and other accommodation options available.

Spectators are encouraged to cheer on participants along the race route with signs and noise-makers, and to celebrate at the finish lines as runners receive their medals.

AprilFoolsRun_CourseMap-595x319


2012 BMO Sunshine Coast April Fools Run Wrap-Up

Finished with a half marathon personal best: 1:39:36!

This past Sunday, April 1, started off cold and wet on Vancouver’s Sunshine Coast as runners and volunteers gathered at the Gibsons recreation centre. As the timing gun went off precisely at 9:00am, the 21.1km half marathon was underway and off the runners went towards the finish line in Sechelt, where bright sunshine awaited.

The BMO Sunshine Coast April Fools Run is a beautiful point-to-point half-marathon course that passes through peaceful neighbourhoods, quiet country roads and through tranquil forests. But don’t be deceived; although the course is a net downhill route, there are many long hills to climb along the way, making this course challenging, even for a trained recreational runner.

The race is warmly embraced by the community. The course was well marked and course marshals along the route were at every turning point ensuring participants were heading in the right direction. It was amazing to see local residents along the race route to cheer on the participants.

Crossing the finish line. Photo credit: Laurie McConnell

The support from local businesses and organizations was evident throughout the race event – from aid stations to door prizes – they had the event covered. Even BMO came on-board for 2012 as a sponsor of the event, and employees from the local branch volunteered their time to ensure the event was a success.

For anyone preparing for the BMO Vancouver Marathon this is a must-do race during spring training. It fits perfectly with the Running Room training schedule too. It becomes a good indicator of how your training is progressing.

Runners, definitely mark this course into your 2013 race calendar. The friendly hospitality, fresh coastal air, scenic route, affordable entry fee, and a finishers medal all make this one of the most exciting spring half marathons.


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