Port Alberni Paper Chase runners depart from Cherry Creek Community Hall during a pre-COVID Paper Chase event. (NEWS FILE PHOTO)

Port Alberni Paper Chase runners depart from Cherry Creek Community Hall during a pre-COVID Paper Chase event. (NEWS FILE PHOTO)

Vancouver Island Race Series hosts ‘virtual’ Port Alberni Paper Chase

Race included a “photo challenge” for runners

A Port Alberni runner placed first in this year’s virtual Paper Chase.

With the COVID-19 pandemic ongoing, the popular Vancouver Island Running Race Series that normally takes place from January to April went virtual this year.

The Port Alberni Paper Chase 15K took place from March 3-10. Runners could choose to race over one, two or three days and had to submit a screenshot of their running time. The race also included a “photo challenge” where runners were asked to take a selfie with a street, building, sign or object that is related to paper. Some of these photos can be seen on the VIRA – Island Race Series Facebook page. The overall winner of the photo challenge was Anne Aubin from Comox.

Port Alberni’s Royd Burkart finished first in the virtual race, with a time of 55:12. He was followed by Richard Light from Duncan in second place (57:03), then Johnathan MacDonald from Comox in third (57:20).

Victoria’s Jamie Daniel finished first in the female category, with a time of 1:01:35. She was followed by Melanie Van Soeren of Vancouver in second (1:05:04) and Colleen Schmidt of Courtenay in third (1:05:23).

“Thank you to everyone who ran the virtual Port Alberni Paper Chase 15K,” the Vancouver Island Race Series posted on Facebook. “While we couldn’t run the route together this year we hope we can next year.”

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