(Vancouver, BC) -- Only five days removed from contesting the NCAA Cross Country Championships, Cameron Levins and Kendra Schaaf both returned home to win the senior races at the Canadian Cross Country Championships on a cold, wet and extremely muddy day at Jericho Beach in Vancouver.
In what was the final race of the day, Levins stayed with a lead group that included Chris Winter, Barry Britt and Justin Duncan before making a devestating move to gap the field at 5k. As he widened his lead over the last half of the race, the other three battled through the mud for the final two podium spots with Britt and Winter finishing second and third.
In the senior women's race, Schaaf and Megan Brown separated themselves from the field early on the race. Although Schaaf put a forty metre lead on Brown it appeared the Athletics Toronto runner might close the gap in the final kilometer but was unable to come from so far back in the conditions.
In the junior mens race, a tightly bunched pack of ten runners finally broke apart after Aaron Hendrikx, the CIS Cross Country Rookie of the Year, put in a surge. He was eventually overtaken by Yves Sikubwabo, Ryan Cassidy and Rob Denault -- with Cassidy capping his season with a remarkable finish by outkicking Sikubwabo down the final straightaway.
In the junior womens race, Ellen Pennock of Calgary put in a surge after two kilometers to gap the field and held on for the victory.
The top twelve eligible athletes in each race qualify for the Canadian team, which will compete at the 2012 NACAC Cross Country Championships in Trinidad.