Skip to content

Runners beat the heat in 2021 Yukon River Trail Marathon

After a year away because of COVID-19, the Yukon River Trail Marathon returned in 2021

The Yukon River Trail Marathon returned Aug. 1 after COVID-19 shuttered the 2020 rendition of the race.

In 2019, runners had to deal with wet and rainy conditions. A year later, it was the polar opposite. The sun was out in full force and the mercury continued to rise in the thermometer well past 25 degrees.

The year away didn’t stop the athletes from getting out to do the marathon. A couple of hundred runners competed in the full 42.2 kilometre distance, the half marathon, the relay and walker categories.

The race began and finished at Rotary Peace Park. For much of the course, racers ran alongside or above the Yukon River or one of a few small pothole lakes.

The trail is well used, but it is worn and racers were told to watch for roots. There was significant elevation gain and loss along the trail.

It was broken up into four legs ranging in length from eight to 13 kilometres. Marathoners did all the legs, while the half-marathon consisted of legs one and four.

Results (note, only the overall results for each race are shown):

Brendan Morphet proved to be the quickest marathon runner on the first. Morphet kept a pace of 12.99 km/hr (8.07 mi/hr) and finished the 42.2 kilometres in three hours, 14 minutes and 37 seconds.

William Bell wasn’t far off the winning pace, his overall time about seven seconds behind Morphet. Ian Weir rounded out the overall top three with a final time of three hours, 32 seconds and 13 seconds.

Virginia Sarrazin was the first woman to finish the full marathon. Her final time was four hours, 22 minutes and 26 seconds. Sarrazin kept a pace of 9.69 km/hr.

Jane Hollenberg was the second-place finisher in four hours, 31 minutes and eight seconds. Hannah McDonald rounded out the top three in four hours, 43 minutes and 48 seconds.

The overall half-marathon winner was Kieran Halliday whose pace of 12.58 km/hr had him finishing in 1:40:10. Not far off the winning pace was Olivier Roy-Jauvin who was one minute, 44 seconds behind the winning time.

Shane Orban came in third in one hour, 44 minutes and 58 seconds.

Victoria Ryan was the first woman to cross the half-marathon finish line. Her 10.59 km/hr pace had her finish in one hour, 59 minutes and one second.

Sarah Bailey’s time of two hours, two minutes and 38 seconds was good for second place and Kristy Petovello rounded out the top three in two hours, three minutes and 44 seconds.

The relay had male, female and mixed teams.

The male team Jeans or sweats were the overall winners finishing the relay in three hours, 35 minutes and 14 seconds. The mixed team called Erin placed second finishing in three hours, 43 minutes and 50 seconds.

Female team Hips Don’t Lie placed third respectively in three hours, 46 minutes and 46 seconds.

Grace Snider and Kim Porter tied for first in the half marathon walker category. Both women kept a 5.71 km/hr pace and finished the 21 kilometres in three hours, 40 minutes and 41 seconds.

Shari Heal came in third place, one second ahead of Brianna Heal in four hours, 33 seconds and 16 seconds.

Contact John Tonin at