The 6, 12 and 24-hour
In its 29th installation, 41 runners committed to the 24-hour challenge of the 2010 Ottawa Self-Transcendence Race. It was an amazing display of courage, determination, and perseverance on the track of the Louis-Riel Dome by all participants. Support from family, friends and volunteers as well as empathy from fellow runners contributed to the performance of each runner. It is in this link between oneness and self-transcendence, inner and outer transformation, that Sri Chinmoy, the inspiration behind the Ottawa 24-hour race, understood the significance of ultra races.
There were more international participants in this year’s event than ever before. Representatives from the United States, Slovakia, Switzerland and Australia graced the track alongside our noble Canadian runners. Dipali Cunningham (Australia), the Women’s World Record holder for 6-day racing, picked up the Michel Carreau Award at this event for her first 24-hour race.
More than seven Canadian National Records are awaiting confirmation by the ACU (Association of Canadian Ultramarathoners). These include 100 km and 24-hour records for Theresa McGrath (women 40-45), Bruce Barteaux (men 55-60), and Marion Landry (women 65-70). Fortunately, Armand Leblanc, director of the ACU and his partner Lise Gagne, were participants in the 24-hour race; confirmation is expected very soon!
Unique to the Ottawa 24-hour Race is the Sy Mah Award for Excellence in Ultra Running. Paul Chenery, overall winner of this year’s 24-hour event, had only a one minute, forty second difference between his 1st and second 50 mile splits. The trophy is a wood-carved hourglass that depicts the balance and steadiness that Sy Mah, a pioneer ultra-runner, strove for.
An addition to the 24-hour event this year was the 12-hour race with seven valiant participants. A repeat from last year is the 6-hour event that included a number of first-time ultra racers. Also new is the 6-hour relay that had three teams on course -- the Striders running club made up two teams and the third included the grandchildren of 24-hour runner Hans Maier. 24-hour racers in training!