Runners tackle elements during chilly Tour de Airdrie fun run
By: Lucas Punkari
| Posted: Thursday, May 08, 2014 12:28 pm
Neither cold conditions nor falling snow prevented runners of all ages from taking part in the ninth edition of the McKee Homes Tour de Airdrie fun run, held on May 4 at Genesis Place Recreation Centre.
Although many people would consider the conditions to be less than ideal, overall event winner Mevlut Kont of Calgary said the weather wasn’t as awful as it could have been as he took part in the 21-kilometre run, and he ran through temperatures that hovered around 1°C with a 6mm mix of rain and snow falling from the skies.
“To be honest, it was the ideal weather to run in, at least for someone like myself,” Kont said. “It’s nice and cool for your body and you’re not sweating as much as you would on a much warmer day.”
“Granted, I was wearing three layers of clothing so I didn’t freeze,” he added.
“But it was still a pretty good day to run.”
That feeling was shared by Airdrie’s Shelley Abbs, who took part in the 10-kilometere run, while her six-year-old daughter Sophie ran with her father Ken in the five-kilometre run.
“You actually don’t really notice how cool it is when you are running, as you’re just focused on doing the best that you can,” Abbs said.
“I didn’t think it was too bad out there though.”
“I had a lot of fun,” Sophie said.
“I thought I would be really cold today, but it was actually pretty good.”
A total of 185 runners took part in this year’s event, with 71 of the competitors taking part in the five-kilometre race.
The second most entries came in the 10-kilometre event with 61 runners participating, and 23 competitors took on the 21-kilometre half-marathon distance.
“This is my third year taking part in this race, and it’s something I look forward to every year,” said Kont, who competed the half-marathon in a time of 1:19:52, which was a 10-second improvement over his race-winning time last year.
“There’s a lot of community involvement here, especially seeing a lot of young teenagers being volunteers, which is great to see.”
“It’s more low-key as well compared to some of the larger events I run in, which gives it a nice and relaxed atmosphere,” he added.
“The course is a beautiful one around town, as you have many different challenges to deal with along the way.”
While the exact totals were not known as of press time, it is expected that more than $40,000 will be raised from this year’s event, which will go towards supporting Community Links and Airdrie Victims Assistance.
“We’re extremely pleased with the amount of money that was raised this year, as we usually end up raising somewhere in the $30,000 range,” event chair Cam Christianson said.
“The money that was raised will go to some great causes here in Airdrie,” he added.