New runners and veterans alike happy to see Tely 10 race return

·3 min read
For only the second time in its history, the 2021 Tely 10 was held in October. (Emma Grunwald/CBC - image credit)
For only the second time in its history, the 2021 Tely 10 was held in October. (Emma Grunwald/CBC - image credit)

The Tely 10, Newfoundland and Labrador's biggest running race, returned to the streets of St. John's, Mount Pearl and Paradise on Sunday, after being held virtually in 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

New runners and veterans alike were happy to get to cross the finish line on Bannerman Road in St. John's once again.

First-time competitor Carolyn Cashin only started running about a year ago and says her performance exceeded her own expectations.

"It was so much fun," said Cashin. "I'm definitely going to run it again. It was excellent."

Emma Grunwald/CBC
Emma Grunwald/CBC

As usual, the race attracted runners from near and far.

Paul Grant drove all the way from Plymouth, Massachusetts to join the race for the first time. The 74-year-old made sure to schedule his sixth trip to the province with the Tely 10 in mind.

"It was a great course and [I] come to find out I came in second in my age group, which is a big surprise and a great thrill. So I'm having the best kind of day," said Grant who competed in the 70-to-74 age group.

"I've been running for 20, 30 years and it keeps me young."

Emma Grunwald/CBC
Emma Grunwald/CBC

Florence Barron follows the same motto. The 83-year-old ran the Tely 10 for the 24th time on Sunday and came in as first female in the 80-plus age group.

Barron is happy to have competed in-person once again this year.

"So good to have an in-person race. Much better than the virtual one," said Barron.

"We did our training as we would any other time. But you know, with the COVID thing, you miss seeing your friends, you don't have all the friends to run with like we usually do."

Even though the race went ahead this year, some changes were made to bring the race into pandemic mode.

One of them was reduced capacity — a cap was placed at 2,550 runners instead of the usual 5,200. Runners also had to wear masks in the corrals and keep them on for the first 700 metres of the race.

Dennis Flynn ran the Tely 10 for the 16th time and says the rules didn't bother him.

"Everybody was adhering to social distances and all the public health rules and masking.… We're all used to it by now," said Flynn.

Another big change was this year's date of the event — October 31.

Emma Grunwald/CBC
Emma Grunwald/CBC

The race, which is usually a July staple, was held in October for only the second time in its 93-year-history.

The last time the Tely 10 was held in October was in 1969. Between 1981 and 2019, Newfoundland's biggest running race took place in July.

Cashin said running a Halloween Tely 10 added some extra fun.

"Kids and adults were dressed up in costumes and so I'd wave to them along the way and it was a great experience," said Cashin.

Flynn couldn't be stopped by single-digit temperatures either, and adds that an October race has its own perks.

"Not a fly in sight. No mosquitoes … no humidity. Wonderful," said Flynn.

Emma Grunwald/CBC
Emma Grunwald/CBC

Colin Fewer was the winner of the 93rd annual Tely 10, crossing the finish line at 50:52. He was followed by Mark Greene, who ran the race in 54:37. Dan MacDonald, Ryan Brown and Peter Bazeley came in third to fifth, respectively.

Kate Bazeley came in first in the women's category with a time of 55:06. Anne Johnston followed her across the finish line just 10 seconds later. Jennifer Murrin, Jade Roberts and Jennifer Barron snatched spots three to five, respectively.

Now, runners have less than a year to prepare for the next Tely 10, which is scheduled for July 24, 2022.

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