Local athletes lead the way at MOMAR

Local athletes lead the way at MOMAR

Solo Women's winer Genevieve Burdett from Courtenay - Photo Aimee Asselin

Vancouver Island racers topped the podium when the Atmosphere Mind Over Mountain Adventure Race (MOMAR) celebrated the end of their 11th season Saturday, Sept. 25 in Cumberland.Todd Nowack of Victoria came in first overall for the 50 km Enduro Course with a time of 4:21:16. This was Nowack’s seventh MOMAR title, tying him with legendary racer Dave Norona of North Vancouver for most MOMAR overall wins.

“Todd dominated the race,” says race director Bryan Tasaka. “Not only is he super fit, but he’s also an incredible navigator, which gives him a big advantage on a course that relies on self-navigation to get from one checkpoint to the next.”

Team PIT, Shane Ruljanich and Garth Campbell of Victoria, came in second overall and first in the team of two categories, with a time of 4:53:47. Jeremy Grasby of Cumberland, last year’s MOMAR Cumberland champ, was third overall, followed by Ryan Stuart of Courtenay.

Genevieve Burdett of Courtenay was the first solo female racer to cross the finish line at 6:08:51. Team Sportin’ in the River, consisting of Powell River’s Graham Cocksedge, Chris Bratseth, Erik Hanson and Vancouver’s Val Litwin, came first in the team of four categories at 6:03:11.

Victoria’s Fergus Bagley and Kelly-Ray Bouchard topped the podium for the 30 km Sport Course, with a time of 3:42:14, followed by Matt Ewonus and Hayley Shearer of Kelowna.

CVMTB.com editor Colin Wilson volunteering - Safety first!

Both the Enduro and Sport Courses were sold-out, with a combined total of 325 racers at the start line. Race stages included kayaking, mountain biking, trekking, bushwhacking and orienteering through 27 checkpoints on Comox Lake and Cumberland trails. Participants came from all across Canada and the United States.

Forecasted heavy winds and rain were of concern on the eve before the race. “There was a major wind warning and we were concerned that the kayak stage would have to be cancelled or modified drastically,” says Tasaka. “When we arrived at Comox Lake on race morning the water was flat and calm and we were able to stick with Plan A.”

Heavy rains held out until 3 p.m., when most racers were completing final race stages. Then it was on to Mount Washington Alpine Resort for the post-race party and celebrations.

Plans are already in the works for MOMAR’s 2011 season. More information on racing, volunteering, MOMAR training clinics and their official charity is available at www.mindovermountain.com/momar or by calling 1-866-912-3331.

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