Make it two Canadian titles in a row – and three overall – for South Surrey cross-country runner Luc Bruchet.
On Sunday in Kingston, Ont., the 27-year-old Elgin Park Secondary grad – and alum of South Surrey’s Ocean Athletics Track and Field Club – won the 10-km men’s senior race at Canadian Cross Country Championships, clocking a time of 29 minutes, 54.9 seconds.
Bruchet, now a member of the Vancouver Thunderbirds Track Club, won last year’s senior men’s race – which like this year’s event was held at Fort Henry in Kingston – in 30:20.2. He also won the senior men’s division in 2013 when the event was held at Vancouver’s Jericho Park.
Sunday’s first-place finish was never really in doubt for the the Olympic distance runner, as Bruchet – who competed in the men’s 5,000-m at the 2016 Games in Rio – led from beginning to end, which prompted Athletics Canada to call his run “a dominating performance” in a post-race news release.
After missing “a fair amount” of training time in the summer, and coupled with the fact he didn’t compete in the most recent track season, Bruchet called his win “redemption for me a little bit.”
“It feels pretty good. This one means a lot to me,” he told Athletics Canada Sunday. “It was hard work all fall and it feels good to defend the title today.”
Another year and another great event put on by the @XCNationals crew! Other events take notes! Glad to defend my national title! Biggie ups to @mike_tate12 for keeping me honest! Congrats to everybody who ran, Fort Henry is true XC course. There’s no hiding out there!
— Lucas Bruchet (@lucabruca) November 25, 2018
He said his plan from the get-go was to try and jump out to an early lead, rather than pace himself and wait to make his move late.
“We trained all fall for a hard 30 minutes. What’s the point of waiting around and dilly-dallying and seeing who can run the fastest last kilometre? I felt that if I came out today and run hard for 30 minutes that it was going to be difficult for anyone to beat me.
“That just meant going out hard right from the gun.”
Bruchet wasn’t the only Surrey runner to fare well on the Kingston trails during the four-day national event.
Maya Kobylanski, a Southridge School student and Ocean Athletics member, was 11th overall in the U18 women’s race and a member of the B.C. team that took gold in the team category; Coastal Track Club’s Baneet Bains was also a member of the gold-medal winning team.
In the U18 men’s race, Ocean Athletics’ Jonathan Hofer was 25th out of 262 competitors.
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