About talkultra

Talk Ultra is an ultra running podcast created by and hosted by Ian Corless. Ian is a runner, writer, photographer, blogger and reporter on all things to do with ultra running. This can be race reporting, interviewing, photographing, podcasting or reviewing equipment. Talk Ultra is a one stop resource for the ultra running world. www.talkultra.com

Mourne Skyline MTR 2014 – Race Report

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Misty skies, gale force winds, relentless climbing, technical terrain and an incredible field of runners made the inaugural Mourne Skyline MTR a day to remember.

Concluding Skyrunning UK’s first year, the Mourne Skyline MTR really was a fitting end to what has been an incredible year. The course, organisation and the field of runners made this a special and unforgettable day in the mountains.

©iancorless.com_Mourne-6576The addition of Skyrunner® World Series champion (2013 and 2014) Stevie Kremer did provide some icing on the Mourne cake. However, ‘Pocket Rocket’ was not isolated… Jo Meek, British Ultra Trail Champion, provided more than enough pressure on the Colorado based Skyrunner on what proved to be one of the most exciting ladies mountain races I have followed for some time. Sharon Trimble, Diane Wilson and Shileen O’Kane would bring local knowledge and fell experience to the mix making this a classic in the making.

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As expected, Kremer pushed hard from the off and after leaving the Donard Forest the trail became steeper and more technical playing to the Colorado runners strength. Although a gap opened up, it was nothing substantial and Meek maintained a gap keeping Kremer in sight. After passing over the saddle, runners were hit by gale force winds and low cloud as they headed out to Slieve Bearnagh, Slieve Meelmore and then an anticlockwise loop that would eventually return them to Slieve Meelmore and then run back to the finish. Conditions were brutal… thankfully the previous nights torrential rain had disappeared. Had it not, runners and marshals would have had a very testing day!

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Wilson, Trimble and O’Kane in many respects were running for third such was the pace of the front two ladies. On the flat, Meek would catch Kremer and then pull away. The relentless and rollercoaster nature of the terrain and mountains would then allow Kremer to pull back and pass on the climbs. This to and froing made for an exhilarating competition of willpower, mental strength and endurance. The latter half of the course, on paper, looked made for Kremer as climb and after climb would allow her to open a gap. However, Meek was having none of it. Running with blinkered vision, Meek fought the technical terrain and chased. ‘I was swearing at the terrain and my own frustrations in managing my technical ability,’ said Meek. Kremer was having no easy ride too, ‘that is the hardest race I have ever done! Harder than Zegama Aizkorri it was just brutal. Relentless climbing, technical and with the wind it was just soooo hard!’

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After CP4, Kremer opened up a gap and extended this on the steep ascent to Slieve Commedagh. Battered by the winds, Kremer put her head down and now pushed hard to the highest point of the course, Slieve Donard. Turning at the summit and descending down the lead extended and on the final technical descent to Newcastle the gap really opened up eventually providing Kremer a winning time of 4:24.2 to Meek’s 4:30.3. The time gaps don’t reflect how close this race was! Post race, Meek was very philosophical, ‘I really did push and race hard but the relentless ankle twisting and gnarly terrain beat me down and in the latter stages as Kremer pulled away I eased off a little knowing that 2nd place was secure.’ Diane Wilson placed 3rd producing a great run on home soil in a time of 4:45.4.

©iancorless.com_Mourne-1133 In the men’s race, local man, Allan Bogle pushed hard in the early stages closely followed by Kim Collison, Eoin Lennon and just 5 seconds back, J Marshall Thomson. It was close, and unlike the ladies race a winner looked likely to come from any of the front contenders. Particularly when one looked at the contenders looking for honours. Ally Beaven, David Steele and Paul Navesy all showed previous results that would mean they could never be ruled out of a podium place.

©iancorless.com_Mourne-0112 ©iancorless.com_Mourne-0130 British Ultra Trail Champion, Collison showed his class at descending and moved away from the other men but Lennon was never going to relinquish the lead without a fight. These two fought a hard battle all day and Lennon showed the wounds of war as blood tricked down his leg.

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Revelation of the race, was Colorado based J Marshall Thomson (Stevie’s fiancé) who raced in the top-5 all day and despite having never raced on ‘typical’ UK terrain pulled out a top-drawer run to place 3rd. ‘That was some of the most crazy terrain I have ever run. It was relentless. The terrain was beyond technical. You had no idea where to put your feet and I can’t tell you how many times I fell over… I loved it!’ said Thomson.

©iancorless.com_Mourne-6344 Collison won the race in 3:57.0 an incredible time in very tough conditions. Ryan Maxwell, race director for the Mourne Skyline MTR had predicted a win time of 4-hours, however, with conditions on the day, we expected this to be optimistic. For Collison and Lennon to both run sub-4 is a real testament to the competition between the two front men.

Thomson moved up into 3rd place and brought a truly international flavour to the men’s podium, his time of 4:08.3 reflecting his ability.

©iancorless.com_Mourne-0433The 2014 Mourne Skyline MTR has firmly established itself as a must-do race after just one edition. The combination of location, local infrastructure, great organisation, enthusiastic locals and a brutal course will guarantee that demand will be high for the 2015 edition.

Covering 35km and a total elevation gain of 3370m, the Mourne Skyline MTR is everything a Skyrunning race should be. I for one can’t wait for 2015.

RACE IMAGES HERE 

You can purchase race images HERE

RESULTS WOMEN Mourne Skyline Mountain-Trail Race

Stevie Kremer 4:24.2 (10th overall)

Jo Meek 4:30.3

Diane Wilson 4:45.4

Sharon Trimble 5:02.1

Shileen O’Kane 5:03.1

RESULTS MEN Mourne Skyline Mountain-Trail Race

Kim Collison 3:57.0

Eoin Lennon 3:59.4

J Marshall Thomson 4:08.3

Ally Beaven 4:12.0

David Steele 4:15.0

Mourne Skyline MTR 2014 – Race Images

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Misty skies, gale force winds, relentless climbing, technical terrain and an incredible field of runners made the inaugural Mourne Skyline MTR a day to remember.

Congratulations to Stevie Kremer and Kim Collison on two great performances.

Stevie said post race, ‘that is the hardest race I have ever done! Harder than Zegama Aizkorri it was just brutal. Relentless climbing, technical and with the wind it was just soooo hard. Kilian Jornet would love it!’

A full race report will follow.

RESULTS WOMEN Mourne Skyline Mountain-Trail Race
Stevie Kremer 4:24.2 (10th overall)
Jo Meek 4:30.3
Diane Wilson 4:45.4
Sharon Trimble 5:02.1
Shileen O’Kane 5:03.1

RESULTS MEN Mourne Skyline Mountain-Trail Race
Kim Collinson 3:57.0
Eoin Lennon 3:59.4
J Marshall Thomson 4:08.3
Ally Beaven 4:12.0
David Steele 4:15.0

Episode 72 – Schlarb, Campbell, Rasmussen

Ep72

Episode 72 of Talk Ultra has a full and in-depth interview with Jason Schlarb after his recent 4th place at the 2014 UTMB. Donnie Campbell talks about his running career and winning the recent 3×3 80km High Terrain Events in the UK and Claus Rasmussen talk about running Spartathlon… in sandals. The News a Blog, UP & Coming Races and Speedgoat Karl Meltzer.

NEWS

Kilian is King! Skyrunner World Series Champion for VK, SKY and ULTRA

Limone Extreme SKY results:
Petro Mamo 2:14:25
Kilian Jornet 2:14:55
David Schneider 2:19:58
Maite Maiora 2:47:05
Stevie Kremer 2:49:03
Elisa Desco 2:52:40
3×3 80k
Donnie Campbell 8:28:56
Lee Kemp 8:38:49
Ed Batty 9:00:17
Ed Catmur 9:23:48
Stephen Birkinshaw 9:29:24
Lizzie Wraith 10:42:23
Sally Ozanne 10:50:18
Kerstin Rosenqvist 11:12:21
Jamie Aarons 11:18:02
Lauren Woodwiss 12:15:08
INTERVIEW with Donnie Campbell
 
GRINDSTONE 100

Jeff Browning 18:34:40
Brian Rusiecki 19:08:01
Michael Owen 19:32:26

Robin Watkins 22:53:13
Megan Stegmiller 23:35:41
Jacqueline Palmer 25:04:56

LIKE THE WIND pop-up – week of activities HERE

STEVIE KREMER in UK 

BLOG
 
Jez Bragg on the Ultra Tour Monte Rosa -HERE
 
INTERVIEW

Carl Rasmussen ran the 2014 Spartathlon in sandals
 
INTERVIEW
 
Jason Schlarb placed 4th at the recent UTMB
GOOD, BAD & UGLY

 
UP & COMING RACES

Australia
Australian Capital Territory
Stromlo Running Festival – 100 km | 100 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Stromlo Running Festival – 50 km | 50 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
New South Wales
Hume & Hovell 100 | 100 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Hume & Hovell 50 | 50 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Washpool/Gibraltar World Heritage Trails 50 km | 50 kilometers | October 26, 2014 | website
South Australia
Heysen 105 | 105 kilometers | October 25, 2014 | website
Victoria
Go the Extra Mile Melbourne | 50 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Ned Kelly Chase 100km – Wangaratta Fitness Fun Addicts | 100 kilometers | October 26, 2014 | website

Austria
Bécs-Pozsony-Budapest Szupermaraton | 317 kilometers | October 19, 2014 | website

Cameroon
Challenge des Montagnes F4 | 160 kilometers | October 26, 2014 | website

Costa Rica
Q50 Costa Rica Ultramarathon | 86 miles | October 18, 2014 | website

France
Aveyron
Endurance Trail | 106 kilometers | October 24, 2014 | website
La course des templiers | 71 kilometers | October 26, 2014 | website
Corse-du-Sud
Corsica Coast Race – 95 km | 95 kilometers | October 29, 2014 | website
Haute-Corse
Corsica Coast Race – 170 km | 170 kilometers | October 25, 2014 | website
Ille-et-Vilaine
Entre Palis et Mégalithes | 64 kilometers | October 19, 2014 | website
Saône-et-Loire
Com Com Trail 68km | 68 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Savoie
Grand Trail du Lac – 72 km | 72 kilometers | October 19, 2014 | website

Germany
North Rhine-Westphalia
Röntgenlauf Ultramarathon | 63 kilometers | October 26, 2014 | website

Greece
Rodopi Advendurun 100 miles | 100 miles | October 17, 2014 | website

India
Himalayan 100 Mile Stage Race | 100 miles | October 31, 2014 | website

Israel
Ultra Marathon Sovev Emek – 100 Km Run | 100 kilometers | October 24, 2014 | website
Ultra Marathon Sovev Emek – 100 Mile Run | 100 miles | October 24, 2014 | website
Ultra Marathon Sovev Emek – 200 Km Run | 200 kilometers | October 24, 2014 | website
Ultra Marathon Sovev Emek – 61 Km Run | 61 kilometers | October 25, 2014 | website

Italy
Campania
Amalfi Coast Trail | 79 kilometers | October 19, 2014 | website
Emilia-Romagna
Tartufo Trail 50 km | 50 kilometers | October 19, 2014 | website
Tartufo Trail 66 km | 66 kilometers | October 19, 2014 | website
Ultramaratona del Tricolore – 100 km | 100 kilometers | October 25, 2014 | website
Friuli-Venezia Giulia
Cormorultra | 69 kilometers | October 19, 2014 | website
Piedmont
Lago d’Orta Ultra Trail – 55 km | 55 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Lago D’Orta Ultra Trail – 80 km | 80 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Sardinia
Sardinia Ultramarathon | 81 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website

Japan
Inagawa 100km Ultra “TOASHI” Fun Run | 100 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website

Mexico
Carrera de Baja Mexican Trail | 100 kilometers | October 19, 2014 | website

Morocco
Trans 333 | 333 kilometers | October 31, 2014 | website
Ultra Runners Race 777+++ | 777 kilometers | October 31, 2014 | website

Nepal
Solukhumbu Trail | 289 kilometers | October 31, 2014 | website

New Zealand
Blackmores XTERRA Trail Challenge Waihi Ultra Marathon | 60 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website

Portugal
Ultra Trail das Aldeias do Xisto | 100 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website

Réunion
La Mascareignes | 67 kilometers | October 24, 2014 | website
Le Grand Raid | 164 kilometers | October 23, 2014 | website
Trail de Bourbon | 93 kilometers | October 25, 2014 | website

South Africa
Bonitas Golden Gate Challenge | 70 kilometers | October 23, 2014 | website
Kalahari Augrabies Extreme Marathon | 250 kilometers | October 30, 2014 | website
Ultra-Trail® Cape Town – 100 km | 100 kilometers | October 25, 2014 | website
Ultra-Trail® Cape Town – 62 km | 62 kilometers | October 25, 2014 | website

Spain
Andalusia
Ultima Frontera – 166 km | 166 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Ultima Frontera – 55 km | 55 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Ultima Frontera – 83 km | 83 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Ultra-Trail Gran Vuelta Valle Del Genal | 125 kilometers | October 25, 2014 | website
Canary Islands
Tenerife Bluetrail 60 km | 59 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Tenerife Bluetrail 94 km | 94 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Castile and León
Ultra de Gredos | 82 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Catalonia
Ultra Trail de la Serra de Montsant | 100 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website

Sweden
Markusloppet | 50 kilometers | October 25, 2014 | website

Tanzania
Kilimanjaro Stage Run | 260 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Zanzibar Ultra Trail | 100 kilometers | October 24, 2014 | website

Thailand
TU100 | 100 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
TU50 | 50 kilometers | October 25, 2014 | website

Turkey
Cappadocia Trail 60km | 62 kilometers | October 25, 2014 | website
Cappadocia Ultra Trail | 110 kilometers | October 25, 2014 | website

United Kingdom
Cumbria
Ennerdale 50k Trail Run | 50 kilometers | October 19, 2014 | website
Derbyshire
Dusk’til Dawn Ultra | 50 miles | October 25, 2014 | website
Devon
East Devon Way Ultra | 53 miles | October 21, 2014 | website
Two Moors Way Ultra | 50 miles | October 20, 2014 | website
Dorset
Wessex Ridgeway Ultra | 52 miles | October 22, 2014 | website
Durham
Original Mountain Marathon | 52 miles | October 25, 2014 | website
Hampshire
Sussex Border Path Ultra | 49 miles | October 24, 2014 | website
Rotherham
Rowbotham’s Round Rotherham International Trail Event | 50 miles | October 18, 2014 | website
Suffolk
Coastal Trail Series – Suffolk – Ultra | 34 miles | October 25, 2014 | website
West Berkshire
Winter 100 | 100 miles | October 18, 2014 | website
West Sussex
Vangard Way Ultra | 44 miles | October 25, 2014 | website
Wiltshire
Clarendon Way Ultra | 48 miles | October 23, 2014 | website

USA
Arizona
Cave Creek Thriller 50K | 50 kilometers | October 19, 2014 | website
California
100 Mile Endurance Challenge | 100 miles | October 18, 2014 | website
Coyote Ridge 50 Km Trail Run | 50 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Lake Hodges 50K | 50 kilometers | October 26, 2014 | website
Stinson Beach 50 km | 50 kilometers | October 25, 2014 | website
Whiskeytown 50K Trail Run | 50 kilometers | October 25, 2014 | website
Connecticut
Bimbler’s Bluff 50k | 50 kilometers | October 19, 2014 | website
Delaware
Sinnemahone Ultra Marathon 50K | 50 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Florida
Mutual Mine 50K | 50 kilometers | October 26, 2014 | website
“Running for the Bay!” 50K | 50 kilometers | October 26, 2014 | website
Illinois
Des Plaines River Tail 50 Miles | 50 miles | October 18, 2014 | website
Forest Glen 50K Trail Run | 50 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Kansas
Lake Perry Rocks! 50K | 50 kilometers | October 19, 2014 | website
Prairie Spirit Trail “Fall Classic” 50K Ultra Race | 50 kilometers | October 25, 2014 | website
Prairie Spirit Trail “Fall Classic” 50 Mile Ultra Race | 50 miles | October 25, 2014 | website
Maine
The Pounder | 50 kilometers | October 19, 2014 | website
The Punisher | 50 miles | October 19, 2014 | website
Maryland
Fire on the Mountain 50K | 50 kilometers | October 26, 2014 | website
Massachusetts
TARC Fall Classic 50K | 50 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Minnesota
Surf the Murph 50K | 50 kilometers | October 25, 2014 | website
Surf the Murph 50M | 50 miles | October 25, 2014 | website
Missouri
Dogwood Canyon 50K Trail Run | 50 kilometers | October 19, 2014 | website
Spirit of the Osage 50K Endurance Run | 50 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Nebraska
G.O.A.T.z 50K Trail Run | 50 kilometers | October 26, 2014 | website
Nevada
Las Vegas 100K | 100 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Las Vegas 100 Mile | 100 miles | October 18, 2014 | website
Las Vegas 150K | 150 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Las Vegas 50K | 50 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
North Carolina
Table Rock Ultras 50K | 50 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Table Rock Ultras 50 Miles | 50 miles | October 18, 2014 | website
Triple Lakes Trail 40 Mile Run | 40 miles | October 25, 2014 | website
Ohio
Stone Steps 50k Trail Run | 50 kilometers | October 26, 2014 | website
Oklahoma
Pumpkin Holler Hunnerd 100K | 100 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Pumpkin Holler Hunnerd 100 Mile | 100 miles | October 18, 2014 | website
Pumpkin Holler Hunnerd 50K | 50 kilometers | October 18, 2014 | website
Pennsylvania
Quad State Quad Buster | 46 miles | October 25, 2014 | website
Tussey mOUnTaiNBACK | 50 miles | October 19, 2014 | website
Tennessee
Ragnar Relay Tennessee | 196 miles | October 24, 2014 | website
Texas
Cactus Rose 100 Mi Trail Run | 100 miles | October 25, 2014 | website
Cactus Rose 50 Mi Trail Run | 50 miles | October 25, 2014 | website
Utah
Goblin Valley Ultra 50K | 50 kilometers | October 25, 2014 | website
Pony Express Trail 100 | 100 miles | October 17, 2014 | website
Pony Express Trail 50 | 50 miles | October 17, 2014 | website
Washington
Ft. Steilacoom 50K Trail Run | 50 kilometers | October 19, 2014 | website
SCOTT Cougar Mountain Series 50k | 50 kilometers | October 26, 2014 | website
West Virginia
Run Around the Gorge | 69 kilometers | October 25, 2014 | website

CLOSE

 

LINKS

ITunes http://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/talk-ultra/id497318073

Libsyn – feed://talkultra.libsyn.com/rss

Website – talkultra.com

The Ingenuous Choice – Mountain Running with Anton Krupicka

The Ingenuous Choice Poster

“We can never have enough of nature”

Discover how Anton Krupicka experiences mountain running and challenges himself running ultra distances on the trails.

Why do we decide to explore mountains, trails and the wilderness? Perhaps because “we can never have enough of nature” as Henry David Thoreau once described. The Ingenuous Choice features mountain runner Anton Krupicka exploring the wilderness of the mountains, racing 100 miles and reflecting on what makes mountain running essential to him.

THE MOVE CAN BE VIEWED HERE

Credits:
Produced by Outdoor Live – outdoor-live.com
Story, filming, edits and distribution: François Tornier & Maxime Tornier
Female voice over: Kylie Whitehead
Texts based on works by Henry David Thoreau, including “Walden; or, Life in the woods”
Music: Bradford Cox (under Creative Commons licence) and “Symbols and Maps”, courtesy of Circulatory System

All content copyright ©FrancoisTornier/ MaximeTornier

Image Gallery

Mourne Skyline MTR 2014 Race Preview – what a line up!

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Ryan Maxwell, race director for the Mourne Skyline MTR provides us with an in-depth preview of this coming weekend’s Mourne Skyline MTR. The final race in the 2014 Skyrunning UK calendar.

This coming weekend, will see the phenomena that is ‘Skyrunning’ reach the shores of Northern Ireland for the first time. The Mourne Skyline Mountain-Trail Race, hosted by popular running website www.nirunning.co.uk, will see a plethora of talent take to the stunning Mourne Mountains.

The Mourne Skyline MTR will see a sell-out field, including Stevie Kremer (Team Salomon), who last weekend was crowned Skyrunner® World Series Champion, over the ‘Sky’ distance for the second time at the incredibly scenic Limone Extreme in Italy where Kremer covered a 24.5k course incorporating 2000m of ascent.  Stevie will have strong competition from Jo Meek who in 2014 became British Ultra Trail Champion, took    5th place at the iconic Comrades and won  The Coastal Challenge with a new course record.

Covering a gruelling but incredibly scenic 35k course incorporating 3,370m of ascent. The Mourne Skyline MTR includes Northern Ireland’s highest mountain, Slieve Donard, which stands at 850m above sea-level and it will be the final peak, before the athletes descend quickly into the Donard Park finish area.

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Former adventure racer and newly crowned British ultra-running Champion Kim Collison will be high in confidence after his victory at the Lakeland 50 trail race in July (2014).  This noteable achievement followed an excellent (joint) win at the notoriously tough Fellsman 61 mile ultra in the Yorkshire Dales in April (2014). Kim, who completed the Bob Graham Round in 2009, also collected a prize at the Scafell trail race and finished well up the field at the Transvulcania La Palma Ultra.

American athlete J Marshall Thomson (Dynafit) hails from Colorado and is an experienced and successful trail runner, with numerous mountain race victories to his name.  Most recently, Marshall secured a win at the Power of Four 50k in Aspen, having smashed the course record.  Looking back,Marshall also proved his worth at the Pikes Peak marathon, where he narrowly missed a podium spot after finish fourth in what was a classy field.

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Irish international Paul Teirney proved himself over 100 miles when he claimed the runners up spot at the Lakeland 100 mile race in 2012; since then, Paul, a former Wicklow Way 82 mile Ultra record holder (13 hours 38mins), finished second at the Wicklow Way Ultra in both 2013 and 2014.

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England based Jayson Cavill has been one of the most impressive performers of the inaugural Skyrunning UK Series, having placed on the podium at two of the three races.  The Pickering Running Club member followed up his second place finish at the V33K with a win at the Peaks Skyrace; he (Jayson) also won the gruelling Blakey Blitz Fell Race back in April (2014).

Paul Navesey (Centurion Ultra Running Team) is another athlete worth watching; after a note-worthy 2013, Paul has brought his form into 2014, winning the Centurion South Downs Way 50 miler in a new course record.  The talented distance runner also showed his speedy age when taking second place at the Canterbury 10 mile road race in 56:27.

Another man known for his ability over shorter distance and not mentioned above is Jens Jakob Anderson (Denmark); the ‘www.runrepeat.com’ website creator has a 5k personal best of 15:58, which he may hope to put to use on the final 3.1 mile descent off Slieve Donard to the finish in Donard Park.

On the local front, Allan Bogle (City of Derry AC) has already proved himself against the best in the UK this year.  In memorable foggy conditions, the City of Derry Spartan secured an excellent win at the British Championship race at Slieve Donard just before the summer.  He (Allan) went on to take sixth place in the overall British Championships standings.  Also on Allan’s CV are wins at the Balearic Mountain Running Championships inMallorca and an impressive top spot at the Lurig Challenge 2014.

Although having raced sparingly in the mountains recently, North Belfast Harriers man Andrew Annett has a classy history and if focussed on this event, he’ll play a major part at the front.  In 2013, Andrew, who was part of North Belfast Harriers winning team at the NI & Ulster (Road) Relay Championships two weeks ago, finished in thirteenth place at Snowdon International Mountain Race last year (2013).  More recently, he has clocked 1:11:31 for his first ever half marathon (on the road), and 5k and 10k bests of 15:48 and 32:38 respectively.

Established Irish international Martin Rea (North Belfast Harriers) will also toe the line as he prepares for the World 100k Championships in Doha (November 2014) and he’ll be joined on the men’s start line by no less than eleven Northern Ireland international’s, which will include the in-form David Steele (Newcastle AC), Deon McNeilly (Newcastle AC), Sam Herron (Mourne Runners), Dale Mathers (Newry City Runners) and Ryan Stewart (Dundee Hawkhill Harriers) amongst others.  Shane Donnelly (Acorns AC), Billy Reed (East Antrim Harriers), Nicki McPeake (Unattached), Matthew Hewitt (East Coast AC) and Gary Bailey (Unattached) all have vast knowledge of the Mourne Mountains and will therefore have high hopes of finishing well up the field.

Stevie Kremer copyright Ian Corless

Stevie Kremer copyright Ian Corless

In truth, the ladies field at the Mourne Skyline MTR has attracted a lot more attention in the international press than the aforementioned men’s line-up.  Much of this is because of the addition of current Skyrunning World Series Champion Stevie Kremer (Team Salomon). The American international burst onto the scene after winning the World Mountain Running Association (WMRA) ‘Long Distance’ event in 2012; Stevie proved this wasn’t a ‘one hit wonder’ when she went on to take second place at the world famous Sierre-Zinal Mountain Race in the same year.

From there, the down to earth athlete has grown in stature, winning the Limone Extreme, Marathon Du Mont-Blanc Skyrace’s in 2013, and with it, the Skyrunning World Series.  Now, Stevie is one of the superstars of the Skyrunning circuit and one of the most respected (and in-form) athletes in the World.  After wins at the Matterhorn Ultraks, Zegama and Sierre-Zinal this year, and a second place finish at the Limone Extreme Skyrace last weekend, Stevie retained her Skyrunning World Series Champion status (at ‘Sky’ distance).

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Another athlete who is in-form at the moment and will also grace the Central Promenade start-line is Jo Meek (Scott); theEngland based athlete has enjoyed an incredible 2014.  After finishing in second place at the Marathon Des-Sables in 2013 it would have been easy for Jo to sit on that success, but the dedicated runner took confidence from it and hammered into 2014, and on doing so, she (Jo) has won the Le Grand Trail du St Jacques (70k), Transylvania Trail Traverse (106k), Iznik Ultra (80k) and the Pembrokeshire Coastal Marathon (27.8 miles); interestingly, in Pembrokeshire, Jo finished in first place overall!  An excellent year was made all the better when Jo was crowned British ultra-running Champion after winning the Lakeland 50 trail race in July (2014).

The list of Champions continues in the form of Sharon Trimble (North Belfast Harriers) and Diane Wilson (Dromore AC).  Originally from Northern Ireland, Sharon is an Irish international who lives in Scotland – Alongside Sarah McCormack (’GTR’ competitor), Sharon is a World Mountain Running Championship medallist.  The 2:51:44 marathoner is also a former Scottish ultra-running Champion and a regular on the podium over all terrain; with her knowledge of the course and if she is on top form, Sharon is a real threat to Stevie and Jo.  Diane is the current Northern Ireland Mountain Running Association (NIMRA) Champion and a lady who knows the Mourne Mountains exceptionally well; Diane also won the Hill & Dale Series in 2014 and clocked a new course record when winning the Carrantuohill mountain race in Ireland; interestingly, Carrantuohill is Ireland’s highest peak.  Diane also claimed a top ten finish at the Ben Nevis mountain race in Scotland this year (2014), taking seventh place.

Former NIMRA Champion and current Northern Ireland international Shileen O’Kane (Lagan Valley AC) will also play a major part in proceedings.  Despite suffering a broken wrist over the summer, the talented athlete, who placed within the top ten in her Vet45 category at the World Masters Mountain Running Championships in last month (September 2014).  Respected ultra-runners Susan McCartney (Up and Runners) and Joanne Curran (BARF) should also finish well up the field – Like, Shileen, Susan has enjoyed an excellent year despite setbacks. The England based athlete had knee surgery earlier this year, but has still managed to win the Mourne Way 52 mile Ultra and claim a very credible twenty second place in the CCC race at UTMB (Ultra trail du Mont-Blanc). Comrades Ultra finisher Joanne Curran has really begun to show good form beyond marathon distance and a win at the Causeway Coast Ultra earlier this month, where she came through late on, has re-iterated her potential over the longer distances.

Runner up at the Peaks Skyrace, Kim England (Pickering AC), will also perform well, as will the likes of Hazel McLaughlin (Lagan Valley AC), Taryn McCoy (BARF), Anne Sandford (Lagan Valley AC), Violet Linton (LV), Denise Mathers (Newry City Runners), Miriam Bridge (City of Derry AC), Angela Stevenson (Newcastle AC) and Kathleen Monteverde (BARF).

2014 has bee the inaugural year for Skyrunning UK. The Mourne Skyline MTR is the final race of the series and looks set to be a classic!

It’s difficult to believe that in less than 12-months, Skyrunning UK has grown in to ‘the’ series to be involved in. The line up for the 2014 Mourne Skyline MTR confirms we are on the up…

Limone Extreme SKY – Image Gallery

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Limone Extreme SKY results:

  1. Petro Mamo 2:14:25
  2. Kilian Jornet 2:14:55
  3. David Schneider 2:19:58
  1. Maite Maiora 2:47:05
  2. Stevie Kremer 2:49:03
  3. Elisa Desco 2:52:40

2010 Skyrunner® World Series titles:

Men

  1. Kilian Jornet Burgada (Salomon Santiveri)
  2. Ionut Zinca (Valetudo)
  3. Zaid Ait Malek (Buff)

Women

  1. Stevie Kremer (Salomon)
  2. Maite Maiora (La Sportiva)
  3. Elisa Desco (Scott Sports)

Skyrunning Limone Extreme SKY – Race Report

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The 2014 Skyrunner® World Series came to a dramatic conclusion in Limone on the banks of Lake Garda today. Although the final race was a formality for Stevie Kremer and Kilian Jornet (both unbeatable after 3 victories) a battle commenced and what a battle…

The Limone Extreme course is a true ‘classic’ Skyrunning race. In simple terms, it’s straight up, run across a ridge (going up and down) and then descend back to lake level and finish under the banner after running 26.5kms and climbing/ descending 2000m. Easy huh? Well, no. But you knew than answer to that one didn’t you.

Petro Mamo from Eritrea (2012 WMRA champion) produced the race of his life to beat the king of the mountains, Kilian Jornet. Kilian on the finish line said that he had very sore legs after putting his efforts into the previous nights Vertical Kilometre. However, one can understand why. His victory in the VK confirmed another Skyrunner® World Series title and he is now world champion in VK, SKY and ULTRA all in the same year! A first and in all honesty, I personally don’t ever see anyone have the versatility and ability to win a series of events that are so diverse.

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David Schneider excelled on the first half of the course in 2013 but faded on the technical downhill. This year bolstered after a great performance at Sierre-Zinal produced an incredible race to finish 3rd ahead of Skyrunning legend, Marco De Gasperi.

On a hot and muggy day, many runners talked about the difficult conditions. Humidity was high and after the previous nights heavy rain, certain sections of the course were very slippery.

Leading the ladies early on, VK specialist Laura Orgue pushed hard with a small lead over Stevie Kremer. Christel Dewalle was showing great powers of recovery running in 3rd after winning the previous nights VK and the ever present, Maite Maiora looked strong in 4th.

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As the race progressed, Maite with fresh legs made a move and took the lead grasping the race by the horns. Stevie Kremer pursued but couldn’t catch the La Sportiva runner as she pushed hard knowing that victory would mean she would finish the series 2nd overall.

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Elisa Desco battling the tough conditions fought hard, catching Dewalle and Orgue and finished 3rd securing her overall place on the podium of the Skyrunner® World Series.

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2014 has been an incredible year. We have see the confirmation of Kilian Jornet and Stevie Kremer as the King and Queen of SKY and in the process we have witnessed the growth of new stars such as Maite Maiora, Elisa Desco, Manuel Merillas, Ionut Zinca and Zaid Ait Malek.

Skyrunning is on the up. NO DOUBT!

Tough, technical and vertical is all the rage. The support of key brands: Salomon, inov-8, Compressport, Scott and Arc’teryx combined with the vision of Lauri van Houten and Marino Giacometti confirms that we are at a pivotal point in the sport. A new year, a new World Series is just around the corner… are you going to be part of the 2015 Skyrunner® World Series? I for one know that I will.

We draw passion from the mountains but it’s in the sky that we can live our dreams.

Less cloud, more sky!

Limone Extreme SKY results:

  1. Petro Mamo 2:14:25
  2. Kilian Jornet 2:14:55
  3. David Schneider 2:19:58
  1. Maite Maiora *times to follow
  2. Stevie Kremer
  3. Elisa Desco

2010 Skyrunner® World Series titles:

Men

  1. Kilian Jornet Burgada (Salomon Santiveri)
  2. Ionut Zinca (Valetudo)
  3. Zaid Ait Malek (Buff)

Women

  1. Stevie Kremer (Salomon)
  2. Maite Maiora (La Sportiva)
  3. Elisa Desco (Scott Sports)

 

 

 

Skyrunning Limone Extreme VK Results and Images

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As light faded over Lake Garda, the worlds best Skyrunners departed the town of Limone and headed up… up 1000 vertical meters for the final of the 2014 Skyrunner(R) World Series.

Leading from the front, Kilian Jornet almost didn’t need a head torch as he illuminated the trail with his speed. Last years winner and Skyrunner(R) World Series 2013 champion, Urban Zemmer followed but the writing was on the wall. Kilian looked impressive, relaxed and despite high humidity looked as cool as a cucumber.

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37:27 after the start, fireworks confirmed Kilian’s arrival at the summit, Zemmer placed 2nd 37-seconds later.

Zemmer’s La Sportiva team mate, Marco Moletto placed 3rd.

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For the ladies, a suer motivated Christen Dewalle lead 2013 Skyrunner(R) World Series champion Laura Orgue all the way to the summit producing a strong and world class performance.

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Laura Orgue forever strong over the VK distance held on to 2nd place 2-minutes behind Dewalle.

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Antonella Confortola had a battle for third place but held on recording a time of 48:16

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Kilian’s victory confirms that he is now Skyrunner(R) World Series champion in VK and ULTRA distances. Tomorrow’s SKY race will make history… Kilian Jornet will be crowned Skyrunner(R) World Series champion in all three disciplines. A first!

If ever proof was needed of the Catalans supreme form and ability, this is it! We are experiencing history and in years to come we will look back and say, ‘do your remember?’

Bravo Kilian.

Results

Kilian Jornet 37:27
Urban Zemmer 38:05
Marco Moletto 38:19

Christel Dewalle 44:51
Laura Orgue 46:51
Antonella Confortola 48:16

William Sichel – A RUN IN THE PARK on RUNULTRA

William Sichel

Read my article on the incredible William Sichel. He has been flying the flag for ultra running for 20-years. This year he took on the intimidating 3,1000 mile SRI CHIMNOY.

‘On day 19 I was 71-miles behind the target pace. I was aware of this but during the race I didn’t know this… it wouldn’t have been helpful. I needed to blank this and work on my mind. I adjusted and went into mental lockdown. I lived in the moment. I focused on each step, each minute detail and I said to myself, just run the greatest distance possible each day and repeat. Lap by lap, day by day I started to adapt and I found that at night I could speed up. After 9pm I could run, I could speed up and I could move quickly. This is coincided with the course being quieter too. The race and the other runners had written me off; they all didn’t think it was possible to pull back such a deficit.’

 

You can read the full article HERE

Make sure to check out RUNULTRA HERE

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