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Vancouver Sun Run

The Vancouver Sun Run, sponsored by The Vancouver Sun newspaper, is a 10-km race held in Vancouvermarker, British Columbiamarker, Canadamarker each year on the third (sometimes the fourth) Sunday in April since 1985. It is one of the largest road races in North America.

Attendance growth

The first Vancouver Sun Run in 1985 started with approximately 3,700 participants, and has grown each year since:

  • With over 39,000 finishers in 2006, it ranked as the 9th largest race in the world and the 3rd largest 10-km race, behind only the Peachtree Road Race in Atlantamarker and the Bolder Boulder in Bouldermarker.
  • The 2006 event took place on April 23 and 50,746 Vancouver Sun Run on, participants registered for the 10-km Sun Run and the 2.5-km "mini Sun Run", which was run by 2,000 people, mostly children and their parents, with some school teams participating as well.
  • On April 15, 2007, the Sun Run had a record amount of participants, with 54,317 people registered to participate in the 10-km and 2.5-km races, making it the largest road race in Canada and the second largest in North America.
  • On April 20, 2008, the record was again broken, with 59,179 runners registered for the run making it the largest 10-kilometre race in the world. The temperature was a chilly 3°C (37.4°F).

Race details

The primary mandate of the Sun Run is to "promote health, fitness and community spirit and to support amateur athletics". The run is not a charity event; however, the organizers claim over $1.1 million in race proceeds have been donated to charities since 1985. It includes a relatively small number of competitive elite runners, a wheelchair race, and numerous other categories of participants ranging from running enthusiasts to parents walking with their children in strollers. The various categories start the race at different times, with the wheelchair and elite runners first, and slower runners following in numerous waves. For several years, individual runners have their time recorded by an electronic chip attached to their shoes, which triggers a timer at the starting line and again at the finish.The current route of the race begins on Georgia Street in downtown Vancouver, with the starting line just west of the intersection of Burrard Street, and ends outside BC Place Stadiummarker after guiding runners through the downtown peninsula and parts of the Kitsilano and Fairview neighbourhoods south of False Creekmarker. The run organizing committee hires numerous entertainers to perform along the route and in the stadium at the end of the race, including local humour/cover band The Neurotics, who have played at the starting line every year since 1995 .

Hundreds of volunteers also assist with organizing, preparing for, and coordinating the race, including amateur radio operators involved in ARES (Amateur Radio Emergency Service) programs from the Lower Mainlandmarker.

Past winners

Year Male winner Female winner
1985 Rob Lonergan 28:47 Susan Lee 32:39
1986 Graeme Fell 29:30 Deborah Bowker 33:31
1987 Graeme Fell 29:11 Lynn Williams 32:15
1988 Paul Williams 29:12 Lynn Williams 33:04
1989 Rex Wilson 28:44 Lynn Williams 32:19
1990 David Campbell 28:54 Deborah Bowker 33:06
1991 Philip Ellis 29:03 Patricia Puntous 33:48
1992 Paul Williams 29:03 Nancy Tinari 32:44
1993 Silvio Guerra 28:42 Leah Pells 32:48
1994 Daniel Komen 27:46 Daria Nauer 32:55
1995 Simon Chemoiywo 28:27 Olga Appell 32:57
1996 Joseph Kimani 27:31 Angela Chalmers 31:05
1997 Tom Nyariki 27:56 Sally Barsosio 31:47
1998 Christian Weber 28:40 Krystina Pieczulis 32:55
1999 Simon Chemoiywo 28:52 Tina Connelly 32:41
2000 James Koskei 27:36 Sally Barsosio 32:24
2001 James Koskei 28:06 Sally Barsosio 33:04
2002 James Koskei 27:58 Sara Dillabough 33:17
2003 Paul Koech 28:48 Aster Demissie 33:20
2004 Thomas Kiplitan 28:43 Émilie Mondor 31:10
2005 Michael Power 29:26 Nicole Stevenson 32:30
2006 Gilbert Okari 28:27 Isabella Ochichi 30:58
2007 Soloman Tsige 29:22 Teyiba Erkesso 32:05
2008 Festus Langat 29:26 Genet Gebregiorgis 33:35
2009 Willy Kimosop 29:04 Abebu Gelan 34:04

  • Note: Bold face text denotes current course record holder.


Since 1997, one dollar from each Sun Run registration has been contributed to Raise-a-Reader, a national literacy campaign. The campaign went national in 2001, and has since raised over $10 million Raise A Reader, National literacy campaign tops $10 million The Vancouver Raise A Reader, CanWest Raise A Reader Day.

Sun Run proceeds also benefit B.C. amateur athletics through the Achilles International Track And Field Society and The Vancouver Sun Jerome International Track Classic, an annual track and field event that gives local athletes the chance to compete against some of the world’s best in their own province.


  1. Vancouver Board of Trade, Sounding Board November 2003 Vol 43 # 6
  2. Running USA [1] Accessed November 6, 2007
  3. Vancouver Sun, April 5, 2004, page C5 [2]
  4. Association of Road Racing Statisticians [3] Accessed September 2, 2006

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