Oak Bay half marathon shelved for this year

A region of runners has been brought to a standstill.

The Oak Bay Half Marathon, scheduled for May 24, has been cancelled due to COVID-19 to join the scrubbed Times Colonist 10K last month and cancelled 2020 GoodLife Fitness Victoria Marathon in October.

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The Oak Bay Half had suspended registration in April because of the pandemic, but was planning to reschedule for the fall. That hope was dashed by the indefinite extension of the provincial health order prohibiting gatherings of more than 50 people until a vaccine is developed or herd immunity attained.

“We are very sorry to have to cancel. We had talked to the municipality of Oak Bay about a postponement and they were open to the idea if the situation was going to change,” said race manager Nick Walker, in a statement.

“We will be back next year.”

Walker said registration will open in the fall for the 2021 race to take place on May 22. The 2020 registrants can roll their entries over into 2021 or 2022 or receive a refund.

The announcement is the latest in a lengthy list of cancelled Island sporting events. The Victoria HarbourCats baseball season in the WCL has been cancelled. The starts of the Pacific FC season in the professional soccer CPL and Victoria Shamrocks and Nanaimo Timbermen seasons in the Western Lacrosse Association have been postponed.

The Victoria Royals of the Western Hockey League had the latter part of their regular season and entire playoffs cancelled. The Cowichan Valley Capitals and Nanaimo Clippers were preparing for the Island Division final when the B.C. Hockey League playoffs were abandoned.

The Canadian women’s rugby team was to have hosted the cancelled Canada Sevens this month at Westhills Stadium as part of its Olympic preparations. The Winter Olympians of Stars on Ice were put on ice this month and did not visit Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre. The Canada men’s soccer games against Trinidad and Tobago, considered key for 2022 World Cup Qatar qualifying in CONCACAF and scheduled for March at Westhills Stadium, were cancelled.

The cancellation of the 2020 Little League World Series in Williamsport, Pennsylvania, caused the scrubbing of the Canadian Little League championship scheduled for August at Layritz Park. The annual Mackenzie Tour-PGA Tour Canada DCBank Open, slated for June 4-7 at Uplands Golf Club, has been postponed. The Tokyo Olympic basketball qualifying tournament, originally scheduled for June 23-28 at the Memorial Centre, has been rescheduled to June 29-July 4, 2021, to coincide with the new Olympic starting date of July 23, 2021.

cdheensaw@timescolonist.com

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