One more Canadian to London: Wykes makes standard in Rotterdam

***Official results:
Wykes 2:10:47
Watson 2:13:37
Marchant 2:31:51
Duchene 2:32:06

According to the athlete’s Twitter and Facebook pages, that’s how it went down. Conditions were cold and windy, according to Marchant’s tweet.

Dylan Wykes joins Reid Coolsaet and Eric Gillis on the Canadian Olympic team in London. No women made it, but those were the fastest times by a Canadian woman since Lioudmilla Kortchaguina ran 2:30:43 in Houston in 2009. You have to go back to 2006 to find a time that is close by another Canadian: Nicole Stevenson ran 2:32:56.

I hope his puts an end to complaints about the Olympic standard in the marathon. If we are sending a full complement of men, can they really be too hard? The lack of depth (until yesterday, but I’d hardly call two women “depth”) is hardly about standards. It’s more about how we short-change female distance runners by limiting opportunities for races over 3000m through inequitable cross country and track distances from a young age. There are quite a few things AC and the branches could do better to encourage women’s distance running before they lower standards. The Run Canada program is a good start. But the support for marathoning needs to start at an earlier age. I’m not saying put 12-year-olds in marathons, but encourage endurance running on equal footing with middle distance. It’s easy to hammer a high school kid into good 1500m shape. It’s harder to teach them patience and appreciation for a 5k or a 10k.

Congrats to all four runners on running massive PBs today. For Wykes, it’s on to London with Gillis and Coolsaet. For the rest, as Rob Watson said, #onwardtorio