Sooke runner breaks record with 200th consecutive race

Bruce Hawkes began Island Race Series streak in 1995

Bruce Hawkes, left, is presented a plaque commemorating his 200th consecutive Island Series race by Bob Reid, high performance director of the Harriers Pioneer 8K. (Joseph Camilleri - Prairie Inn Harriers)

Sooke runner Bruce Hawkes, 76, broke a record that many think will never be repeated – and he’s pretty nonchalant about it.

By running in a Vancouver Island Runners Association race in North Saanich on Jan. 12, the senior completed his 200th consecutive Island Race Series race, a record 25 years in the making.

“I’m definitely not a real runner,” Hawkes modestly emailed friends before he completed his feat 1½ weeks ago.

“I am a runner but just to prove I’m not really, this Sunday at the Pioneer 8K I’ll be competing in no less than 200 consecutive Island Race Series.”

In the Jan. 12 race, Hawkes finished a respectable 52:47, placed seventh out of 11 runners in the M57-79 age division and 477 overall in a field of 547.

Full results can be viewed here.

Hawkes ran his first race in the Island Race Series on June 22, 1995 in the M50-54 division.

Vancouver Island Runners’ Association general manager Louise Hodgson-Jones described Hawkes as modest, but his achievement extraordinary.

“He’s very dedicated, obviously,” Hodgson-Jones said.

““I think it would be pretty challenging. He doesn’t just do [the Island Race Series], but other ones as well, and he runs regularly during the week.

RELATED: Runners set for Island series

Bob Reid has known Hawkes for more than 25 years, as both a member of the Sooke Trail and Road Running Club and Prairie Inn Harriers Running Club.

Reid, now high performance director of the Harriers Pioneer 8K, predicts no one will ever beat Hawkes’ record.

“It takes 25 years to do it, and I don’t think anybody is prepared to put in that dedication, time, energy and effort into a streak like that.” he said.

It’s the second time the Vancouver Island Racing Series have honoured Hawkes for his longevity and consistency. In 2007, he was presented with the VIRA Century Endurance Award for 100 consecutive races.

In addition to the Island Race Series, Hawkes has an impressive record on other courses, including the Prairie Inn Harriers’ Gunnar Shaw Cross Country Classic, Thetis Lake Relay and Stewart Mountain Challenge, where he’s never missed a race

“He’s very quiet and keeps to himself,” Reid said.

“I think he’s very proud of what he does and doesn’t want to brag or talk about it. He has a lot of determination.”

Also on Jan. 12, VIRA unveiled a new age category: M90. Legendary runner and inductee of the Greater Victoria Sports Hall of fame, Maurice Tarrant completed the course with his daughter and training partner Claire in 1:13:09.

Tarrant is holder of 76 age-category Canadian records.

The Island Race Series is a series of eight races from Victoria to Courtenay. The second race in the series is this Sunday (Jan. 26) in Cobble Hill. The TriStars Sooke 10K is on April 5.

To register online for the Cobble Hill 10K go to: www.islandseries.org.



editor@sookenewsmirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Local Sportsrunning

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Minor earthquake hits Greater Victoria Saturday morning

Earthquake ‘lightly felt’ in the area, Earthquake Canada says

“Isolation is normal for us,” says Saanich dad with cystic fibrosis

Gordon Head man says now’s the time to approve life-saving cystic fibrosis drug

Victoria business still busy as people turn to books while in self-isolation

Russell Books says certain genres have gained popularity during COVID-19

Farmers’ markets still open in Greater Victoria

The Moss Street and Esquimalt Farmers’ markets are scheduled to take place, with slight variations

UVic offers students Pass/Fail grading option as COVID-19 impacts spring studies

Students given three options for final grade presentation

COVID-19: A message from the publisher

We will be making some changes to our print editions during these unprecedented times

B.C. VIEWS: Small businesses need our help

Just as integral in neighbourhoods in Vancouver and Surrey as they are in Prince George or Kelowna

‘Tremendous’ response from blood donors has supply keeping pace with demand

About 400,000 of Canada’s 37 million residents give blood on a regular basis

Morning world update: Cases surge past 600,000; positive news in Germany

Spain suffers its deadliest day as Germany considers April 20 to possibly loosen restrictions

VIDEO: Penguins roam empty halls of Vancouver Aquarium

COVID-19 has forced the Vancouver Aquarium to close access to guests – leaving room for its residents

COVID-19: Qualicum Beach youngster gets car parade for his sixth birthday

Friends get creative after party cancelled due to ongoing pandemic

Kids get back to learning in B.C., online

Ministry of Education rolls out new tool for school

Most Read