Delta councillor on the run (bike, swim)

Coun. Jeannie Kanakos crosses the finish line in last weekend’s Delta Triathlon. -
Coun. Jeannie Kanakos crosses the finish line in last weekend’s Delta Triathlon.
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The first time Jeannie Kanakos competed in the Delta Triathlon, it was on a borrowed racing bike in 2007.

The North Delta resident cycles regularly, but it’s on a round-tired hybrid model meant for commuting, not competing.

She finished last in her age category (55 and over). This year, the Delta councillor was determined to improve her time.

“I thought I’d better buy a bike this time.”

She also devoted more time to training.

On Saturday, the 57-year-old grandmother finished second in her age group with a time of one hour, 30 minutes and 41 seconds at the ninth annual Delta triathlon.

Competitor number 776 says she was feeling a little wobbly after swimming 28 lengths, cycling 20 kilometres and running five kms, but she was otherwise fine.

She hopes to shave a few minutes off her time next year.

“There’s room for improvement,” Kanakos said.

She’s hoping more North Delta residents will compete in the Ladner event next year.

While Kanakos was bettering her time, Delta Chief Administrative Officer George Harvie and Delta Fire Chief Dan Copeland were battling it out for bragging rights.

Harvie had issued a friendly challenge to Copeland a few months earlier.

The top bureaucrat in the corporation of Delta is a regular competitor in the Delta triathlon, while the fire chief is a veteran of several marathons.

Harvie beat Copeland by less than 90 seconds. Both were less than six minutes ahead of Kanakos.

When the Delta triathlon started in 2000, just 40 competitors turned out.

This year there were 395 adult registrants and 91 children who ran the shorter Kids of Steel version.

A Victoria man, Mike Neill, was the first-place finisher this year with a time of 55 minutes and 36 seconds. Rachel Joyce, also of Victoria, was the first woman to finish.

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