Road To The Olympic Games

Track and Field

Canadian marathon record holder Cam Levins 5th in Toronto 10K

Cam Levins of Black Creek, B.C., finished fifth in the men's race of the Toronto 10K on Saturday, the first time he has competed in the big city since breaking Jerome Drayton's national marathon mark at the Toronto Waterfront event last Oct. 21.

Says he's recovered from knee injury; Rachel Hannah 2nd in women's race

Canadian marathon record holder Cam Levins returned from a knee injury to finish fifth in Saturday's 10K in 30 minutes 19.9 seconds. The 30-year-old, who finished inside the top 15 in the 5,000 and 10,000 metres at the 2012 Olympics, has his sights set on the marathon at the 2020 Summer Games in Tokyo. (Twitter/@alnbrookes)

There was no talk of another Canadian record by distance runner Cam Levins on Saturday, though he did continue his series of strong Toronto performances.

Levins finished fifth in the men's race of the Toronto 10K, the first time he has competed in the big city since breaking Jerome Drayton's national marathon mark at the Toronto Waterfront event last Oct. 21.

It was also the 30-year-old's first race since the New York City Half Marathon in mid-March after which he withdrew from the London Marathon in late April due to a suspected injury to his patellar tendon, which attaches the bottom of the kneecap to the top of the shinbone.

"I've been healthy for a few weeks. I felt fine the whole way, it's just that the fitness isn't there," said Levins, who noted he may have trained too hard for London.

Levins posted a time of 30 minutes 19.9 seconds on Saturday, 22.5 seconds behind 30-year-old winner Jean-Marie Vianney-Uwajeneza of Rwanda, who now lives in Ottawa. Levins' personal best in the 10K is 29:24, set on Aug. 5, 2017 at the Beach to Beacon 10K in Cape Elizabeth, Maine.

Eyeing Tokyo

The next month, he won the Canadian 5K Road Race Championships in Toronto's Yorkville area.

"I love going to Toronto any chance I get and love racing there," said Levins, a native of Black Creek, B.C.

WATCH | Cam Levins break the Canadian record in his debut marathon:

In his marathon debut, Cam Levins of Black Creek, B.C., broke Jerome Drayton's 43-year-old Canadian men's marathon record by 44 seconds. Levins finished fourth in the Toronto Waterfront Marathon with a time of 2:09:25. 1:48

At the 2017 world track and field championships, Levins lost his Canadian 10,000-metre record of 27:07.51 to Mo Ahmed, who clocked 27:02.35.

Levins, who finished inside the top 15 in the 5,000 and 10,000 at the 2012 Olympics in London, is hoping to qualify in the marathon for next year's Summer Games in Tokyo.

"If I do things right, I could continue to improve and potentially be a strong competitor come the Olympics," Levins told CBC Sports in March. "I don't know that's where I'm going to end up, but as of now I would love to do it.

"I have a high ceiling to reach for still but feel I have a lot of potential."

Also Saturday, Toronto's Rachel Hannah placed second in the women's race in 34:28.6, 28.6 seconds behind Salome Nyirarukundo (34:00.2) and more than nine seconds ahead of Gladys Tarus of the Toronto Olympic Club.

"I am quite happy with it, given the turnaround after Ottawa," said Hannah, who was eighth (2:41:31) at the Ottawa Marathon on May 26. "I had quite a bit left in me at the end [of Saturday's race] but that's the marathoner in me."

About the Author

Doug Harrison has covered the professional and amateur scene as a senior writer for CBC Sports since 2003. Previously, the Burlington, Ont., native covered the NHL and other leagues for Faceoff.com. Follow the award-winning journalist @harrisoncbc

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