© Copyright – 2015 – Athletics Illustrated

Vancouver’s Chris Winter believes he is ready to make the move to qualify to represent Canada at the world championships and Olympics in the 3,000m steeplechase event. His next race will take place during the 2015 Harry Jerome Track Classic on Monday, June 8th.

Winter is one of Canada’s top steeple and cross-country runners. His personal best is 8:28.17, which he ran in Lucerne, Switzerland last summer. He won the 2014 Canadian Cross Country Championships on November 29th. Winter told Athletics Illustrated, “I’m really looking forward to this year’s Harry Jerome. I’m chasing the World Championship and Olympic Standard of 8:28.0 (I’ve already run 8:29.86 this season) and I believe we have set up a race here in Vancouver that will give me a great shot at it.”

To qualify for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games and 2015 Beijing IAAF World Track and Field Championships, he only needs to improve his best time by 17/100ths of a second, while being one of the top three athletes in the nation. To qualify for the 2015 Toronto Pan Am/Parapan Am Games, Winter simply needs to be number two in the nation, but he has his competition.

Shawinigan, Quebec’s Alex Genest ran 8:24 already this year and sits in the number two position in Canada. Guelph, Ontario’s Taylor Milne owns a personal best of 8:25.46, he ran that one month ago on May 2nd at the Payton Jordan Invitational, so he is currently as fit as he has ever been. Although he does not appear to be on the start list Oshawa, Ontario’s Matt Hughes has run as fast as 8:11.64, which is the Canadian record and this year is under the qualification standard with his Prefontaine Classic performance of 8:20. If Winter can improve by that small margin and not be overtaken by Canada’s long list of steeple chasers, he appears to be in a good position to represent Canada in at least Beijing and Rio.

“Vancouver is my home and can expect a lot of local support cheering me on. I hope I can channel some of that magic I felt back in Late November at the National cross country championships at Jericho Beach!”

Harry Jerome tentative start list:

Taylor Milne’81                 CAN       8:25.46                8:25.46
Donald Cowart’85            USA       4:06.22M              8:26.38
Chris Winter’86                CAN       8:29.86                 8:28.17
Ryan Brockerville’89        CAN       8:37.75                 8:37.65
Chris Dulhanty’92             CAN       8:41.29                 8:40.97
John Coyle’90                   USA        8:51.84                 8:41.64
Jesus Romo                      USA        8:49.46                8:48.34
Justin Kent’92                  CAN        8:48.19                 8:48.08
Gareth Hadfield’92          CAN       8:51.65                  8:51.65
Deon Clifford’94               CAN       9:20.13                 8:59.29
Brady Beagley’91              USA       9:05.04                 9:05.04
Joel De Schiffart’94          CAN       9:06.10                  9:06.10
Cody Therrien’92              CAN       9:09.98                  9:09.98
Zachary Holloway’94       USA       9:19.39                   9:16.39
John Gay’96                      CAN       9:19.71                  9:19.71