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Tannis Reddy makes history as first female to win County Marathon

Tannis Reddy is the first female to win the County Marathon. – Briar Boyce photo

Story and photos by Olivia Timm

Tannis Reddy

Tannis Reddy made history as the first female to win the County Marathon.

The Toronto resident completed the 16th annual full marathon in 2:50:19 with a beaming smile.

“I’m really excited and happy. Being the first female is pretty cool and all of the ladies that I passed, everyone on the course cheering, was amazing. When I heard people saying ‘It’s a girl! It’s a girl! She’s in first!’ I felt like I had to do this for all these women. It’s so special.”

Reddy said she has always been active, and took part in track and field growing up, but never considers herself a competitive person. She said running and staying active keeps her “balanced.”

“It keeps me mentally sharp. I deal with anxiety, so running is a great outlet for me. I think it’s important to talk about things that people struggle with, and for me it’s anxiety, so running is a great resource for me.”

The County Marathon was Reddy’s fourth full marathon. After competing in the Boston marathon in the spring, her race time improved by nine minutes, which she attributes to an intensive training cycle.

Reddy’s partner, Steven, said they both try to mix it up between small and large races, and that they picked the County Marathon because they have friends who live in the area. Reddy mentioned the support she felt from the many volunteers stationed throughout the course.

“It was so lovely to see people out on their porches cheering, it felt very spirited for a small-town race. It’s very different coming from Boston.”

Reddy said the rainy weather was hard to push through at times, but kept reminding herself that she’d be on a beach in Barbados with Steven the day after the race.

“Every time I could feel fatigue setting in, I would tell myself over and over – ‘tomorrow I will be on the beach, tomorrow I will be on the beach’,” she laughed.

Todd Shannon, second-place finisher, with third-place runner, Matthew Kerry just-behind.

Todd Shannon, 34, from Ottawa, took second place in the full marathon, with a time of 02:55:58. He said seeing a woman win was amazing.

“I think it’s incredible,” he said. “She passed us at about the five ‘K’ mark, and then was just gone for the rest of the race. I really think it is amazing.”

Matthew Kerry secured third place, seconds behind Shannon, at 2:56:02.

Daniel Stasiuk from Toronto, finished the full marathon in fourth place, crossing the finish line with his little girl, Tessa.

More than 700 runners braved the wind and rain Sunday morning to compete in the race, but the sun peaked through late morning as more racers started to cross the finish line.

Tracy Reid, race co-ordinator, said the event organizers prepared for the conditions by providing buses and tents to keep runners dry and warm, and having the Wellington and Picton arenas equipped with massage therapists and refreshments.

Reid was also pleased that a woman won the race.

“We’ve always had a male win the event, so to have a female win is an excellent thing. Anyone who gets out there and completes a full or a half [marathon], when they cross that finish line, whether first or last, I think they’re a winner because they did it,” she said.

There were 133 participants in the full marathon (42.2 km) which consisted of 41 women and 92 men.

The Remax Quinte half marathon (21.1 km) saw 333 runners, made up of 207 women and 126 men.
Sean Smith of Toronto placed first in the half marathon at a time of 1:29:53. Tiff Lucia of Ottawa was the half marathon overall female with a time of 1:35:23.

Team Walsh – Aden, Liam, Anna, Kasey and Jeff, from Belleville, were the overall winner and top mixed team in the Hospital Foundation Team Challenge.

Thirty-nine teams participated in the Hospital Foundation Team Challenge, an increase from 28 teams last year. Team Walsh finished in first place for the second year in a row, followed by Rad Dads and Couche Tard following in second and third place.

Shannon Coull, executive director of the Prince Edward County Memorial Hospital Foundation, the marathon’s chosen charity, received a cheque for $3,604.01 this year, presented by Mark Henry.

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