Steve King, known for announcing the Subaru Ironman Canada triathlons, is honoured to have a race in his name.
The Steve King Classic (100-kilometre) will take place Saturday beginning at 6 a.m. at Mile Zero in Princeton and finishes at 7 p.m. in Summerland’s Memorial Park.
“I’m honoured also because it’s for a very good cause, Feed the Valley,” said King. “It’s very pleasing for me. Far better now than a memorial as Steve (Brown) was saying.”
King said he knew that Brown, the race director, had been planning on hosting an event. He just had no idea it would take his name. Brown, owner of Peach City Runners and Adventure Sports, made the decision based on King’s years of dedication to ultra sports.
King said the event will be a preview for those considering Ultraman Canada. Stage one of the course takes runners through Maverick Ranch Crossing (16.3-km). To learn more about the course, check www.stevekingclassic.com.
Athletes have the choice of doing the ultra event or the relay.
King will be announcing the race and admitted it will be a bit “weird” calling a race named after him. When asked, he joked that he might have to be careful not to have a slip of the tongue and call finishers an Ironman.
“I hope it becomes an event that people enjoy and is quite popular,” he said, also taking a moment to encourage people to support the Terry Fox Run on Sunday. “Come raise some funds to help some locals.”
Brown said in an email that the registration is very disappointing in terms of overall numbers.
They expect 14 solo/ultra runners to start the race. In addition, nine relay teams will participate, giving a total of 79 athletes.
Despite those numbers, he said they certainly hope to make it an annual event. He added that they will have an opportunity to talk with the athletes, who he described as ambassadors, this weekend for input.
“Try to figure out if it is something we did wrong or if it is just a result of so many events being available every weekend in all parts of the Pacific Northwest,” he said. “Attracting people to new events is just that much more difficult.
“We believe that we are offering a good event but ultimately it is the athletes that decide if an event lives or dies simply by their attendance or lack of