Friday April 14, 2017
Westwood Lake, Nanaimo BC
Point-to-Point Trail Race and 6km Family Cookie Run/Walk

Sunday, February 26, 2017

2017 Fletcher’s Challenge is going to be SPECIAL!

2017 Fletcher’s Challenge is going to be SPECIAL! 

You can rest assured that the race routes (yes  - routeS!) for the Tenth Anniversary running of the Fletcher Challenge are a beauty and are routes that we know Gavin would have been happy to have his name attached to.  This year’s courses are so spectacular, in fact, that we are actually considering having them as permanent race routes for the Fletcher’s Challenge. We will let you, the racing community, tell us what you think after you have run this year’s routes.  We still have the usual Cookie Walk around the lake and the Annual Easter egg Hunt for those of you that prefer something a bit more laid back.
 

Short Course (12k) vs Long Course (15k)

BOTH races are exciting POINT TO POINT endeavors, on some of the most stunning single track trails to be found on Vancouver Island. Starting from a top secret location that runners will be bussed to, and finishing at Westwood Lake, runners will enjoy our standard fare of well marked trails filled with enthusiastic volunteers to cheer you on. Runners of both the short and long course will be required to start the race carrying water with them. 
 
The 12k short course is reminiscent of previous Fletcher’s Challenge courses in both its difficulty and character. Winning times are expected to be in the ballpark of 1 hour, with the average runner taking closer to 2 hours to finish, and the back of the pack coming in under 3 hours. Runners will be rewarded for their efforts with stunning trails, and world class views. 
 
With the 15k long course, we wanted to take runners to new heights. At ‘only’ 3k more in distance, we expect winning times to be approximately 30 minutes longer, with average finishing times around 3 hours. A cutoff will be in effect to ensure that runners are not on course for longer than ?? hours. How could 3k take the race winners an extra 30 minutes? We will leave that to your imagination, but suffice it to say runners will be working hard, and that with great work comes great reward! We promise that you will LOVE this route, but we want you to be prepared. 
 
CHOICE! In fact, the 12k and 15k races share the same route, with the exception of that mysterious 3km #evilgrin. There will be a location, in the first third of the race, where runners who have chosen the 15k route will have the choice of “downgrading” (don’t worry, we don’t judge!) to the 12k option. In fact, we will have a cut-off in place such that long course runners who fail to reach this point within a predetermined time will be redirected to the short course. 
 
Its been stated confidently by some passionate trail runners in the know, that this will be without a doubt the best trail race route on Vancouver Island. This race will sell out, and space is CAPPED. Do not miss this one!

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Fletcher's Challenge 2017

Welcome to Fletcher's Challenge 2017!

2017 marks the 10TH ANNIVERSARY of Fletcher's Challenge and this year the epic race is even bigger and better than ever! This year you have not only one, but TWO trail races to choose from - a 12km course, and a 15km course. Both are scenic and challenging and as always, feature the point-to-point format that Fletcher's Challenge is famous for.

Funds raised at the Fletcher's Challenge event are donated back to the community through Runners Of Compassion - Nanaimo Chapter. The funds assist underprivileged youth in accessing sports.
 

TRAIL RACE

2017 features two trail courses to choose from - a 12km course and a 15km course. Both are point-to-point races featuring some of Nanaimo's best trails. This is a timed event, and guaranteed fun. Race participants are capped at 235 racers, so make sure you register early and don't miss out on a seat on the bus.

There will be some excellent door prizes available from our sponsors, as well as awards for the top finishers in their age groups. 


  • Bib Pickup: 8:30am - 9:30am
  • Bus Leaves: 9:30am (Don't miss it!)
  • Race Start: 10am
* New this year, all races must carry water. Participants in the 12km distance and the 15km distance are required to carry water during the race.


6KM FAMILY COOKIE RUN/WALK

Gather up the kids, and come on out for the ever popular cookie walk! This event is a blast for all ages. Entrants enjoy a single lap around Westwood Lake, and are treated to a cookie station along the way for some extra motivation.
  • Bib Pickup: 8:30am - 9:45am
  • Race Start: 10am

Easter Egg Hunt 

If the thrill of running around the lake and eating cookies is not enough to motivate your kids to participate, then how about the lure of the post-run Easter Egg Hunt!?






This event memorializes Mr. Gavin Fletcher who died at too young an age. He was a well known sports columnist, a member of ROC, a husband and father. 

His family values were paramount but his love of good fun competition in sports was unequaled. 

It is with this intent that we fashion The Fletcher's Challenge, held each year on Good Friday, open to both runners and walkers. 

It is about participation, having fun and enjoying some physical activity with your family. 


Monday, March 28, 2016

Fletcher's Challenge 2016 - Race Report

Fletcher’s Challenge was another great success and even Mother Nature worked in our favor this year. Westwood Lake Park was overflowing with families and trail racers. The numbers were again strong with Fletcher’s Challenge at the tail end of two-week spring break.

We had 474 participate in the family run/walk, who were nicely greeted by a cookie station on the backside of the lake. The trail race had a total of 227 registrants with 191 participants in the race.

The mystery point-to-point trail race again has received great reviews.  The secrecy and speculation about the course each year is always great, and there were no leaks other than one that I know of. which was me.  Michael Hartmann nicely captured some great photos of the day and the trail race, which can be found by clicking here.

Congratulations to Dan and Norm for an amazing course showcasing Nanaimo’s single track trails. We had racers from all over the island and Nanaimo represented on Friday. Congratulations all!!! Results can be found by clicking here.

The kids turned out in full force for the Annual East Egg Hunt with the Frontrunners Team up for the challenge. There were some pretty excited kids. This event doesn’t happen without the help of a lot of volunteers to make a trail race happen, family run/walk, and an Easter Egg Hunt run without any glitches. First of all I would to thank all of the members of Runners of Compassion who baked cookies for the event.  Then, I would like to recognize Jason Blanchette who has been involved with Fletcher’s Challenge from the very beginning and who supplies the food each year. Not to worry about any of the extra food we had this year as it was all kindly donated to the Salvation Army, which they were very appreciative of.

During the day of the event, approximately 75 volunteers help with set up, registration, managing the parking lot, food, beverages, cookie station for the kids on the back side of the lake, first aid, course marking, water station for the trail racers, course marshals, course sweep, emcee and clean up.  A round of applause to them.

Since the first Fletcher's Challenge back in 2007, we are grateful for the generosity of many corporate sponsors who come back each year so kudos to them.  Without them, our event wouldn’t be the success it is today.  You can check out who they are on our site at www.fletcherschallenge.blogspot.ca and while making your consumer decisions remember who they are and give them your support as well.

Each year, there are always the group of individuals who come back year after year who really go above and beyond. A huge thanks to Dan Brady, Normon Thibault, Jeremy Clegg, Charles Burrell, Jeannette Whiskin, Tami Beales, Sue Handel,  and Jason Blanchette who have worked tirelessly to make this event such a success. This is outstanding group of individuals who keep Gavin Fletcher’s memory alive.

Please check out the Runners of Compassion – Nanaimo Chapter Facebook page for photos and information about how you can get involved with ROC. The funds raised from this event, which will be donated back into the community through Runners of Compassion - Nanaimo Chapter and will assist underprivileged youth getting access to sports.  Since 2003, Runners of Compassion has donated in excess of $160,000.

On the day of the event and in the days leading up to it, we had a number of people give financial donations, which is greatly appreciated.

We encourage any feedback that you as a participant have about the event. We want this to be a quality event we can build on each year so please email me your thoughts at gscott73@shaw.ca

Should you have left something at Westwood Lake Park, there is a lost and found at Frontrunners Nanaimo located at #101-1825 Bowen Road.

Please mark your calendar for Good Friday 2017 for the 10th Annual Fletcher’s Challenge.

Cheers,
Greg Scott
Race Director

Thursday, March 24, 2016

The Final Countdown - Fletcher's Challenge 2016

THANK YOU for your overwhelming support!

Fletcher’s Challenge 2016 is shaping up to be another stellar event! We have a

record number of registrations for both the trail race and the cookie walk! The

energy is overwhelming! We have five busses for shuttling trail runners to the

TOP SECRET start location!


THE GOLDEN RULE – If you have a great time tomorrow - TELL YOUR

FRIENDS for next year! If you find something that can be improved - TELL US!

Above all else, HAVE FUN!


Since 2003 Runners of Compassion – Nanaimo Chapter has donated in excess

of $160,000. The funds raised from this event will be used to assist young people

overcome financial barriers so that they can participate in sport activities. THANK

YOU!!!


When and Where: Friday, March 25th, 2016 at Westwood Lake

  • TRAIL RACE REGISTRATION & BIB PICKUP: 8:30-9:20AM
  • BUSSES LEAVE AT 9:25AM SHARP for all Trail Racers
  • FAMILY RUN/WALK DAY OF REGISTRATION: 8:30-9:45AM
  • If you have preregistered for family run/walk: arrive at 9:45am
  • TRAIL RACE & COOKIE WALK: Start Time is 10:00AM

INFO FOR EVERYONE:

Last year we have in excess of 800 people, so parking will be a challenge. For

Nanaimo residents, please car pool if at all possible! COME EARLY


INFO FOR TRAIL RUNNERS:

Our trails are a precious and valuable commodity for Nanaimo.  Taking 200+

people over them has impact.  Let’s keep it to a minimum. NO COURSE

CUTTING, Switchback cutting, corner cutting or braiding of the set and marked

route.  Follow the main trail as marked.  Do not go into the scrub, vegetation for

your gain and the courses’ loss.  If you cut the course, go through vegetation,

take a braid, cut a switchback, or go off the marked course for your gain, you will

be disqualified from this event.  We take this seriously.

Safety: The rule for trail racing is IF you come across someone that is injured or

in distress - The first person on the scene stays with the injured person.  The

second person goes forward or backwards on the course to contact a course

marshal and look for help.  The next 2-3 people should check and make sure

everything is OK and if there is any more help needed before proceeding.  We all

take care of each other.  This event and no event is worth not taking care of a

fellow athlete.


 Course length is 15.7km.


Course profile: If last year’s course was a saw blade now think instead of a

pyramid.  Leave some gas in the tank for the second half of the course.  Don’t

give everything in the first half.

Water refill & gels are available at approximately the 8km mark.

All Runners are advised to carry your own water. Fill your water at Westwood

Lake BEFORE you get on the bus.

Please use the facilities at Westwood Lake before boarding the bus at

9:20AM or use the washrooms on the bus, as there will not be washrooms

at the start of the trail race.


The busses will leave at 9:25 DO NOT MISS THEM!

There will be hampers available at the start line to leave any clothing etc. that

you do not want to race with at the start line. These items will be brought back to

the finish line at Westwood Lake. NO VALUABLES! We will not be responsible

for lost or stolen items!


DO NOT leave anything on the bus!


Cutoff at the 8km water station will be 80 minutes (approx. 10 mins/km). Runners

missing this cutoff will be shuttled to the finish line. This pace coincides with

finishing times for some of the slower runners over the last couple of years.


Thank you again and see you on Good Friday.

Greg Scott

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Have You Registered?

Fletcher's Challenge 2016 registration is filling up fast! Register at Frontrunners Nanaimo, or register online. Registration closes Thursday March 24.


Thursday, February 4, 2016

Fletcher's Challenge 2016

Welcome to Fletcher's Challenge 2016!
This year's race is the 9TH ANNUAL Fletcher's Challenge. Hard to believe. Last year, the unique point-to-point race raised $15,000 which was donated back to the community through Runners Of Compassion - Nanaimo Chapter. The funds assisted underprivileged youth in accessing sports. Let's do it - let's top last year's total in 2016!

Now for the details...
 
TRAIL RACE
  • Bib Pickup: 8:30am - 9:30am
  • Bus Leaves: 9:30am (Don't miss it!)
  • Race Start: 10am
We have an excellent trail run for those who enjoy a real challenge. This is a point to point race, approximately 16km, and features some of Nanaimo's best trails. This is a timed event, and guaranteed fun. The distance will be confirmed closer to the race. As this point to point trail race has become so popular, we are going to cap the race at 235 racers so make sure you register early as you don't want to miss a seat on the bus and miss the race. Lets try and fill all five buses this year.


6KM FAMILY COOKIE RUN/WALK
  • Bib Pickup: 8:30am - 9:45am
  • Race Start: 10am
Gather up the kids, and come on out for the ever popular cookie walk! This event is a blast for those of all ages. Entrants enjoy a single lap around Westwood Lake, and are treated to cookie stations along the way for some extra motivation.

A big draw at this event is the cookie run for kids around Westwood Lake. However; cookies are not the exclusive domain of the kids, as all runners and walkers are treated to some pretty good home-baked treats after their run/walk.


Easter Egg Hunt 

If the thrill of running around the lake and eating cookies is not enough to motivate your kids to participate, then how about the lure of the post-run easter egg hunt!?



There will be some excellent door prizes available from our sponsors, as well as awards for the top finishers in their age groups. 



This running event memorializes Mr. Gavin Fletcher who died at too young an age. He was a well known sports columnist, a member of ROC, a husband and father. 

His family values were paramount but his love of good fun competition in sports was unequalled. 

It is with this intent that we fashion The Fletcher's Challenge, held each year on Good Friday open to both runners and walkers. 

It is about participation, having fun and enjoying some physical activity with your family.