Lucknow track and field star Julie-Anne Staehli had a great end to her 2022 season as she captured the Women's 10K title at the Canadian Cross Country Championships in Ottawa on Saturday, November 26.
Staehli, who has won many races at 5K and competed in the Tokyo Olympics, said she had to prepare a little differently for this one.
"The cross country course, it's just a totally different game. There was a big hill, so it ends up being technical. It was 5-by2-K loops around Mooney's Bay in Ottawa, so we had sandy sections, and there was a bit of mud," Staehli said.
Staehli blew her competition away, taking the lead with over 3K left and winning by a 22 second margin. She says she prepared and approached the multiple terrain course a little differently than usual, but knew she was in good shape a little over halfway through the race as she began pulling away.
"From five of us, three of us, two of us, and once I was in the lead and I still had 3K, from there it just felt so good and I felt that I was just running on a high. Into the last loop, the energy of the crowd and being home again in Canada and having that, it was really special," added Staehli. "I mean just the footing alone, when you think about a track, compared to the road, compared to the grass, you're constantly on uneven ground and I think it starts to become more of a strength-based sport, which, that's sort of my thing, my strength is my strength. As a runner, you have to be able to sort of be adaptable in a lot of ways."
As she takes a well earned breather as the 2022 season ends, Staehli will rest up and then work on getting ready to go to Australia next February for the World Championships.
A full interview with Julie-Anne Staehli is available below, courtesy of the Instigating w/Clarkey and Drury sports show (https://www.youtube.com/@instigatingwithclarkeyandd5851):