Run a race, win a watch

Timex-sponsored runs are only a few among dozens of local opportunities to get your legs pumping

Published on April 2, 2013
Runners spread out on their quest to run 10 miles in less than favourable conditions on Good Friday. — Photo by Susan Flanagan

On Good Friday — remember that icky, stormy morning? — about 100 people braved inches of slush and snow to run the Tely 10 route from Octagon Pond to Bannerman Park.

A couple cheered as runners ran down Topsail Road, a lady on the step with a toddler and a man in the window with a baby waving wildly. About halfway, a group huddled in the gale force wind distributing water and Gatorade to runners.

This annual unsanctioned, unmarshaled, unofficial road running event, sponsored by no one, is called the Tely Teaser.

I only ran one way, while others chose to go out and back for 20 miles. We could see their jackets billowing in the wind as we drove to the start.

Why do this?

For one thing, no matter the weather, it’s a howling good time. At one point near the second overpass, the wind was so strong I could hardly keep up with myself.

And second, the Tely Teaser marks the unofficial start of spring road racing in the St. John’s area. On April 7, New World Running Club has its Spring into Spring 2- or 4-km run in Bowring Park. Admission is $5 or a food bank donation.

The first official timed race in

St. John’s this season is the Boston Pizza Flat Out Timex 5 km on April 14, sponsored by Athletics NorthEAST (ANE). This race is only in its third year and participants run two loops around Stavanger Drive (it’s Sunday morning, so there’s little traffic) followed by a social at Boston Pizza. There, runners will mingle, medals will be awarded and about a half dozen lucky people will walk away with a new Timex watch.

When a race is designated as a Timex race, it means that at the awards ceremony six runners are randomly chosen to win a latest model Timex watch. Some runners have won more than a dozen watches over the years. I have won two and they are more exciting than any medal. Every time I look at my wrist, I remember that I am doing my best to stay fit, or I remember I have to look for my lost watch, which our couch tends to ingest now and then.

There are 10 Timex races each season, including races in Garnish (June 1: 10 km), Gander (Aug. 4: 5 and 10 km) and Goose Bay (Oct. 13: 10 km). Please note that the National Post has rated the Trapline Marathon as one of its favourite races for 2013. Also be amazed that the winner of last year’s Trapline Marathon in Goose Bay was Michal “The Joggler” Kapral who not only won but set a course record in a time of 2 hours, 59 minutes and 32 seconds, all while juggling three balls. He believes he is the first “joggler” to win a marathon.

Visit his blog at

I remember my first St. John’s road race. It was a 5 km at Mundy Pond in 2002. I had Zellers sneakers and a dry throat and I was definitely NOT juggling anything. I came in just under 30 minutes. My relatively slow time didn’t deter me, however, and the other runners were so inclusive that I found myself signing up for more and more races.

Catching on

Road racing in this province is getting more and more popular. Take the Tely 10, for instance. In 2012, 3,350 runners and walkers were at the start line. That’s almost a thousand per cent more than 1992, when Paul McCloy was first among 349 other runners to win the race in a time of 51:13.

Races like the Tely 10 have also begun to attract out-of-province competition. Matt Loiselle, last year’s Tely winner (who upset Colin Fewer’s chance at eight consecutive Tely wins), hails from Ontario.

Lisa Harvey (married to Newfoundland’s most famous runner Paul McCloy), six-time winner of the Tely 10, was born in Vancouver but resides in Calgary. Lisa tries to come to St. John’s every July to run the Tely. Last year she wrestled back the female Tely 10 title from Kate Vaughan, who was the first female to cross the line in 2010 and 2011.

If you’ve never run a race, now’s the time to size up the schedule below and sign up. If you’d rather stay on the sidelines, you should consider volunteering. High school students who need volunteer hours for career class, this is your perfect chance. Ditto for The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award.

All you have to do is look at the list below and sign on as a volunteer.

Sunday, April 14

Boston Pizza Flat Out Timex 5-km Road Race (Timex #1), St. John’s

Athletics NorthEAST Running Club: Basil Kavanagh, 693-8798,

Sunday, April 21

Nautilus Mundy Pond 5-km Road Race, St. John’s

Nautilus Running Club: Gerona McGrath, 725-8359,

Sunday, May 5

35th Annual Burton’s Pond Timex

5-km Road Race (Timex #2), St. John’s

NLAA Canada Games 2013 Program: George Stanoev, 576-1303,

Sunday, May 19

Nautilus Harbourfront Timex 10-km Road Race (Timex #3), St. John’s

Nautilus Running Club: Donna Warren,, Gerona McGrath,

Sunday, May 26

ANE 1-Mile Road Race, St. John’s

Athletics NorthEAST Running Club: Patrick Dalton, 746-4054,

Saturday, June 1

CHCM Timex 10-km Road Race (Timex #4), Garnish

Mariners Athletics Club: Gordon Brockerville, 279-0380,, Lyman Keeping,

Sunday, June 23

Molson Canadian Light Timex 10-km Road Race (Timex #5), St. John’s

NLAA Canada Games 2013 Program: George Stanoev, 576-1303,

Sunday, July 14

Mews Timex 8-km Road Race (Timex #6), St. John’s

Athletics NorthEAST Running Club: Paul Shea, 687-2072,

Sunday, July 28

The Tely 10 — 10-Mile Road Race,

Paradise/St. John’s

NLAA: George Stanoev, 576-1303,

Sunday, Aug. 4

Timex Commander Gander 5-km and 10 km Road Races (Timex #7), Gander

Runway Running Club: Barry Hicks, 651-2722,

Sunday, Aug. 18

Uniformed Services Run 10-km Road Race, St. John’s

Athletics NorthEAST Running Club: Stewart Hughes, 778-0636,

Sunday, Aug. 25

Quidi Vidi 5-km Road Race, St. John’s

NLAA Canada Games 2013 Program: George Stanoev, 576-1303,

Sunday, Sept. 8

Nautilus NLAA Provincial Timex 5-km Road Race Championship (Timex #8), St. John’s

Nautilus Running Club: Donna Warren, 579-8156,

Saturday, Sept. 14

Paradise Five and Dime (5-km and

10-km), Paradise

Paradise Running Club: Marc Alivio, 687-6515,

Sunday, Sept. 22

Huffin Puffin Marathon, Nautilus Half Marathon and Ekiden Marathon Team Relay, St. John’s

Nautilus Running Club: Fabien Basset, 864-6132,

Sunday, Oct. 6

Coleman’s Half Marathon,

Corner Brook

Corner Brook Running Club:

David Decker,

Mervyn Dean,

Sunday, Oct. 13

Trapline Marathon / Half-Marathon/Timex 10-km (Timex #9), Goose Bay

Trappers’ Running Club: Nathaniel Pollock,

Sunday, Oct. 13

The Turkey Tea Timex 10-km Road Race (Timex #10), Mount Pearl

New World Running Club: Ben Dunne, 368-0684,; Keith Day, 685-3726,

Sunday, Oct. 20

Cape to Cabot 20-km Road Race,

St. John’s

Athletics NorthEAST Running Club

Stephen Delaney, 579-2342,

Monday, Nov. 11

Run to Remember 11-km Race,

Mount Pearl

New World Running Club: Ben Dunne, 368-0684,; Keith Day, 685-3726,

Susan Flanagan only just noticed the brick donated by the Newfoundland and Labrador Athletic Association (NLAA) in Bannerman Park’s Memorial Garden. Susan can be reached at