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Canadian student wins 10k Vancouver Sun Fun Run

(Xinhua)

10:22, April 16, 2012

VANCOUVER, April 15 (Xinhua) -- Canadian university student Kelly Wiebe overtook Kenya's Kip Kangogo in the last 50 meters of their 10-kilometer race Sunday to win the 28th annual Vancouver Sun Fun Run in a field that drew 48,904 participants.

With Wiebe crossing the finish line in a time of 29:12, one second faster that Kangogo, the 2010 champion, Natasha Fraser captured the women's race in 34:12 for a domestic sweep of western Canada's largest 10K run.

It was the first time since 1992 that a Canadian man and woman had won both races in the same year. Wiebe, a 22-year-old environmental engineering student at the University of Regina, said the race was particularly memorable with the caliber of the field and in that he normally runs cross-country. Toronto's Matt Loiselle (29:18) was third among the elite men, followed by defending champion Eric Gillis (29:30) who will represent Canada in the marathon at this summer's London Olympic Games.

"I can't even believe what happened. I wasn't even expecting to win at all. I was just hoping to be in that lead group and maybe finish in the top five or six or seven, or something. But never in my wildest dreams did I think of winning the Vancouver Sun Run, so I'm very happy," said Wiebe who picked 3,000 Canadian dollars for the win, and another 2,000 dollar as the top Canadian.

He said he led the race for a good portion and stayed close when there were a few lead changes towards the end. "I know all these guys have a lot of marathon miles under their legs and I'm gearing up for the track season, so I was kind of chomping at the bit coming into the last 50 (yards) and I knew I had these guys at the end."

The Alberta-based Kangogo, who attends the University of Lethbridge, has had good success in Vancouver, winning the city's half marathon for the past three years and finishing third at last year's Sun Run. He is currently applying to immigrate to Canada and hopes the process will be completed next year so he can compete for the country in the world championships.

"Well I came and I tried my best, you know, and it was more of a tactical race," he said. "I knew it was going to be tactical and I was just trying to stay sharp and with two kilometers to go the race became honest. We were running pretty good, like three minutes a kilometer, and then in the home stretch Kelly came and passed me at 50 meters. Regardless, it was a good race."

With defending champion Lucy Njeri of Kenya sidelined with injury, and Canadian triathlon star Paula Findley skipping the race, Fraser saw her increased training regime pay off for her first Sun Run title after finishing third in 2011.

"I was really confident this year. I just stayed positive and thought, never thought that I couldn't do it. So when it got tough I really pushed through, I've been training hard and I feel fit, so it's great," said the 30-year-old native of Port Moody, a Vancouver suburb city.

Fraser, who works in a restaurant and trains six nights a week, won the British Columbia half marathon title earlier this year.

"I feel like I can only get better and I feel like I'm ready to run a lot faster. I feel like I could have gone faster today, but I didn't have the girls right behind me. They are maybe 20, 30 seconds behind me, so I definitely feel like I could push faster."

Colorado's Melissa Todd was runner-up in the elite women's field with a time of 34:38, while Newfoundland's Kate Bazeley was third.

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