The Ortona Challenge

“Canadian Armour Passing Through Ortona”, by Dr. Charles Comfort. Canadian War Museum (CN 12245)

The Ortona Challenge is an event within Canada Army Run where participants run, walk or roll officially in BOTH the 5K and 10K events.

Participants who register for the Ortona Challenge will receive a unique bib and race shirt (design/photos coming soon). In addition, upon completion of the Challenge, participants will receive a special coin as well as their dog tag medals.

The Ortona Challenge was added to the 2018 Canada Army Run line-up to commemorate the anniversary of the capture of Ortona during the Italian Campaign of the Second World War.

To find out more about the capture of Ortona, visit the Juno Beach Centre website, here: https://www.junobeach.org/canada-in-wwii/articles/the-italian-campaign/the-capture-of-ortona/

Company “B” of the Seaforth Highlanders moving along a mined coastal path December 21st, 1943; Ortona can be seen in the distance.
Photo by Frederick G. Whitcombe. Department of National Defence / National Archives of Canada, PA-152749.

 

 

Participants can register for the Ortona Challenge by clicking here and choosing the “Ortona Challenge” category.

We recommend that participants start in the first wave of the 5K at 08:00. After completing the 5K and collecting your dog tag, you may enter the 10K from any corral wave you wish.

You will have one bib that will work for both events, and will receive a special prize at the end of the race!

** Participants MUST start no later than the last wave of the 10K to remain in the Challenge. Participants who do not return from running the 5K by the last wave of the 10K will be disqualified. **

Don’t see an answer to your question? Click here.

Below are answers to common questions about the Ortona Challenge

  • You must start the 10K by the time of the last wave (event starts at 8:45 a.m.). No exceptions will be made after the last wave
  • You will not be able to start the 10K after the last wave
  • Walking/5K times slower than 45 minutes are not recommended
  • Due to time restrictions, slower times are encouraged for any other event
  • Participants receive the exclusive Ortona Challenge shirt only. 5K and 10K shirts may be made available for sale at the shirt pickup location on Sunday, subject to availability
  • You will receive your 5K dog tag medal after the 5K only. Participants are responsible for carrying or storying their 5K medal for the duration of the 10K
  • Upon completion of the 5K, you will not enter the Recovery Zone. You will proceed directly to Laurier Ave. in the lane provided to access the start line
  • You will receive your exclusive Ortona Challenge coin in the Recovery Zone, after the 10K
  • 2018 will be the only year for the Ortona Challenge
    • 2019 will commemorate D-Day (Second World War)
    • 2020 will commemorate Victory in Europe (Second World War)

Share your Ortona story: http://armyrun.ca/about/stories/share-your-story/

Ambulances at Ortona

“The late Stephen Rowan of Fort Simpson, NWT, once recounted to me how he had been peripherally involved in the battle of Ortona as a civilian ambulance attendant. He had tried joining the American forces but was rejected (I forget the reason why), so he volunteered with a civilian organisation that provided ambulance services in battle zones. He helped evacuate wounded Canadian soldiers from the front during the Battle of Ortona. When it was over, the ambulance drivers were told to park their vehicles in a field and they were then trucked away to some other region. He forgot to hand in the key to his ambulance and still had it on his key chain when I met him 15 years ago. While denied the opportunity of taking a more active role in the conflict, the work that he carried out was crucial for so many who desperately needed medical attention and his kind and soothing words must have given hope to many a young soldier.” – Jean-Luc Pilon

History and pride

“I learned about the Battle of Ortona when my son was in a platoon bearing that name during a six-week cadet camp at CFB Valcartier two years ago. I was so proud to see him succeed at the camp and to learn the history!” – Sylvie Giroux

 

 

 

My uncle Bobby Barter – Royal Canadian Regiment – Ortona 

“I ran this year in memory of my uncle, Bobby Barter, who fought with the Royal Canadian Regiment in Ortona and is buried there. He was the son of a Canadian First World War veteran from Grand Cascapedia, Quebec. Bobby was only 20 years old when he was killed in January 1944, leaving behind a wife, son and a daughter he had never met. His memory lives on.” – Robert Barter

http://www.veterans.gc.ca/eng/remembrance/memorials/canadian-virtual-war-memorial/detail/2203962?Robert%20Henry%20Barter

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