Episode 92 – Albon and Frost

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Episode 92 of Talk Ultra – We speak with Tromso SkyRace winner, Jonathan Albon and we have an inspiring chat with ladies Hardrock 100 winner, Anna Frost. The news and Speedgoat is back after a really busy month racing and working.

00:27:57 NEWS

Help Nepal – Nepal images ‘FACES of NEPAL’ – order a print and all funds donated to Nepal charities http://iancorless.org/2015/04/28/nepal-appeal-nepalearthquake/ 


  1. Sage Canaday 5:13
  2. Alex Nichols 5:41
  3. Dan Kraft 5:57
  1. Hillary Allen 6:37
  2. Emily Richards 6:52
  3. Abby Rideout 7:00

TROMSO SKYRACE Race Report HERE and Race Images HERE

1 – Jonathan Albon 6:08:41

2 – Luis Alberto Hernando 6:25:54

3 – Rolf Einar Jensen 6:28:51

1 – Emelie Forsberg 7:09:54

2 – Mira Rai 7:23:09

3 – Malena Haukey 7:31:29

00:48:49 INTERVIEW

JONATHAN ALBON – Race report by Jonathan HERE

How scary…?


Pete Kostelnick 23:27:10

Oswaldo Lopez 25:38:32

Mick Thwaites 26:23:10

Nikki Wynd 27:23:27

Pam Reed 31:24:34

Jill Anderson 34:04:14


Paul Tierney 20:42:07

Marco Consani 21:45:50

Jason Lewis 23:01:39

Carol Morgan 25:47:32

Katie Boden 28:36:19

Isobel Wykes 29:23:52


Jayson Cavill 8:04:24

Matty Brennan 8:28:24

Paul Grundy 8:28:54

Sally Fawcett 8:43:43 – 4th overall

Debbie Martin-Consani 9:04:30

Mel Varvel 9:21:57


Aalto Ashprihana ran 3100 miles in 41 days!

01:25:04 INTERVIEW




Northern Territory

Alice Springs 60K Ultramarathon | 60 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website


Lamington Eco Challenge Two Marathons on Two Consecutive Days | 84 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

River Run 100 | 100 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

River Run 50 km | 50 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website



100 km Dodentocht® | 100 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website


Trail des Fantômes – 100 km | 100 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

Trail des Fantômes – 50 km | 50 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website



Iron Legs 50 Miler | 50 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

British Columbia

Fat Dog 100 Trail Race: 120 mile | 120 miles | August 14, 2015 | website

Fat Dog 100 Trail Race: 50 mile | 50 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

Fat Dog 100 Trail Race: 70 mile | 70 miles | August 15, 2015 | website


Creemore Vertical Challenge 50K | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Iroquoia Trail Test – 50K | 50 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website


Trans Vallée | 67 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website


52K Aculeo | 52 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website


Ultra Trail Parque Los Nevados – 59 km | 59 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Ultra Trail Parque Los Nevados – 93 km | 93 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website



NDURE Trail 100 km | 100 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

NDURE Trail 50 km | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website



Grand Raid des Pyrénées – l’Ultra | 160 kilometers | August 21, 2015 | website

Grand Raid des Pyrénées – Tour des Cirques | 117 kilometers | August 21, 2015 | website


Ultra Tour des 4 Massifs | 160 kilometers | August 21, 2015 | website


L’Orleans-Océan | 410 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website


Trail des Castors – 80 km | 80 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website



100MeilenBerlin | 100 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

North Rhine-Westphalia

Monschau Ultra-Marathon | 56 kilometers | August 09, 2015 | website


Jammu and Kashmir

La Ultra – The High | 222 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

La Ultra – The High 111 | 111 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website


Mount Rinjani Ultra | 52 kilometers | August 07, 2015 | website



Connemara 100 | 100 miles | August 08, 2015 | website


Quadrathon | 169 kilometers | August 13, 2015 | website


Amazing Maasai Ultra | 75 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website


North Holland

Dutch Coast Ultra by Night (Summer Edition) | 75 kilometers | August 21, 2015 | website

Dutch Coast Ultra by Night (Summer Edition) – 50 km | 50 kilometers | August 21, 2015 | website


Bieg Grania Tatr | 71 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website


VLC Ultra TrailRun Petrimanu 56 | 56 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website



Calcenada Vuelta al Moncayo – 104 km | 104 kilometers | August 07, 2015 | website

Canary Islands

Haría Extreme Ultra | 80 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website


Björkliden Arctic Mountain Marathon 50 km | 50 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website

Björkliden Arctic Mountain Marathon 70 km | 70 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website

Stockholm Ultramarathon 100 km | 100 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Stockholm Ultramarathon 50 km | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Sweden Sky Race 24 – 117 km | 117 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Sweden Sky Race 24 – 57 km | 57 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Tierra Arctic Ultra | 120 kilometers | August 07, 2015 | website

Trans Scania | 246 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website



Swiss Irontrail T141 | 147 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website

Swiss Irontrail T201 | 202 kilometers | August 13, 2015 | website

Swiss Irontrail T81 | 89 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website

Trail Marathon 70 KM | 70 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website


Ultra Race – 130 km | 128 kilometers | August 07, 2015 | website

Ultra Race – 50 km | 51 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Ultra Race – 80 km | 81 kilometers | August 07, 2015 | website


Ultra Trail du Barlatay | 87 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website


Raidlight Sardona Ultra Trail | 82 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

United Kingdom


Inov-8 Roseland August Trail – 32 Mile | 32 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

Inov-8 Roseland August Trail – The Plague | 64 miles | August 15, 2015 | website


Oxford Ultra | 65 miles | August 14, 2015 | website

Thames Challenge | 184 miles | August 13, 2015 | website

Windsor Ultra | 43 miles | August 15, 2015 | website


Ultra Tour of the Peak District | 60 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

South Lanarkshire

John Lucas Memorial Run | 50 miles | August 16, 2015 | website


Stour Valley Path 100km Ultra Run | 100 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website


North Downs Way 100 | 100 miles | August 08, 2015 | website


Salisbury 54321 50K Ultra Marathon | 50 kilometers | August 09, 2015 | website



Nifty Fifty 50K | 50 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Resurrection Pass 100 Mile Ultra Trail | 100 miles | August 07, 2015 | website

Resurrection Pass 50 Mile Ultra Trail | 50 miles | August 08, 2015 | website


100K | 100 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

100M | 100 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

50K | 50 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

50M | 50 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

Cinderella Trail Run 50 km (Aug) | 50 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Cool Moon 100M | 100 miles | August 08, 2015 | website

Cool Moon 50M | 50 miles | August 08, 2015 | website

Crystal Springs 50 Km Trail Run (summer) | 50 kilometers | August 09, 2015 | website

Ragnar Trail Tahoe | 136 miles | August 14, 2015 | website

Run on the Sly 50K Trail Run | 50 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

Skyline 50K | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website


Beetle Kill 100k Endurance Run | 100 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website

Beetle Kill 200k Endurance Run | 200 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website

Beetle Kill 50k Endurance Run | 50 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website

GORE-TEX TransRockies Run – Run3 | 59 miles | August 11, 2015 | website

GORE-TEX TransRockies Run – TRR6 | 120 miles | August 11, 2015 | website

Ragnar Relay Colorado | 200 miles | August 07, 2015 | website

Silverheels 100 Mile Endurance Run | 102 miles | August 08, 2015 | website

Silverton 1000 – 100 Miler | 100 miles | August 18, 2015 | website

Telluride Mountain Run | 38 miles | August 08, 2015 | website


Standhope 60K | 60 kilometers | August 18, 2015 | website

Standhope Ultra Challenge | 83 miles | August 15, 2015 | website


TARC Summer Classic 50K | 50 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

TARC Summer Classic 50M | 50 miles | August 15, 2015 | website


Marquette Trail 50 Kilometer | 50 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Marquette Trail 50 Mile | 50 miles | August 15, 2015 | website


Ragnar Relay Great River | 200 miles | August 14, 2015 | website


Ghosts of Yellowstone | 100 miles | August 21, 2015 | website

Ghosts of Yellowstone 100M | 100 miles | August 21, 2015 | website


Marlette 50K Trail Run | 50 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

New Hampshire

100 Miler | 100 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

50 Miler | 50 miles | August 16, 2015 | website

MadAthlete Emerald Necklace 3-Day Stage Race | 80 kilometers | August 21, 2015 | website

MadAthlete Emerald Necklace 3-Day Stage Race 2-Person Relay | 80 miles | August 21, 2015 | website

New Jersey

100k | 100 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

50k | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

50M | 50 miles | August 08, 2015 | website

New York

Beast of Burden Summer 100 Miler | 100 miles | August 08, 2015 | website

Beast of Burden Summer 50 Miler | 50 miles | August 08, 2015 | website

Catskill Mountain 100K Road Race | 100 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

Catskill Mountain 100K Road Relay | 100 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

Team Relay Race | 234 miles | August 14, 2015 | website

The Mighty Mosquito 99 Mile Trail Relay | 99 miles | August 08, 2015 | website

North Carolina

Death Before DNF Ultra 100 Miler | 100 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

Drop to 50 Miler | 50 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

North Dakota

Badlands 50K | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Badlands 50 miler | 50 miles | August 08, 2015 | website


Elkhorn Relay | 203 miles | August 07, 2015 | website

Post Canyon 50k | 50 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website


Eastern States 100 | 100 miles | August 15, 2015 | website


Colorado Bend – 60k | 60 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website


Skyline Mountain 50K | 50 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website


100on100 Heart of Vermont Relay | 100 miles | August 15, 2015 | website


Martha Moats Baker Memorial 50Km | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website


200 Mile S2S | 200 miles | August 14, 2015 | website

Angels Staircase 50K | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Angels Staircase 60K | 60 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Bigfoot 200 Mile Endurance Run | 205 miles | August 07, 2015 | website

West Virginia

Kanawha Trace 50K | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website


El Vaquero Loco 50K | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website


MOSI-OA-TUNYA TRAIL | 85 kilometers | August 13, 2015 | website

02:05:52 CLOSE





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Hardrock 100 2015 Race Preview #HR100


The Hardrock Hundred Mile Endurance Run is an ultra marathon of 100.5 miles in length, plus 33,992 feet of climb and 33,992 feet of descent for a total elevation change of 67,984 feet, at an average elevation of over 11,000 feet. The race is held on a loop course on 4WD roads, dirt trails, and cross country in Southern Colorado’s San Juan Range, USA.

The run starts and ends in Silverton, Colorado and travels through the towns of Telluride, Ouray, and the ghost town of Sherman, crossing thirteen major passes in the 12,000′ to 13,000′ range.

Entrants must travel above 12,000 feet (3,700 m) of elevation a total of 13 times, with the highest point on the course being the 14,048′ summit of Handies Peak. The race has been held in early July of each year beginning in 1992, except for 1995 (too much snow) and 2002 (nearby forest fires). Each year’s race is run in the opposite direction of the previous year’s event (2008 was run in the clockwise direction, 2009 will be counter-clockwise). In order to complete the event, instead of crossing a finish line, runners are required to “kiss the Hardrock”, a picture of a ram’s head painted on a large block of stone mining debris.

This course offers a graduate level challenge for endurance runs. The course is designed to provide extreme challenges in altitude, steepness, and remoteness. Mountaineering, wilderness survival and wilderness navigation skills are as important in this event as your endurance.


In 2014 Kilian Jornet made the course, dare I say, look easy! He took photos, waited for Julien Chorier and then finally took off and smashed the course record. Hos victory guaranteed him a slot for 2015 and so he’s coming back to go in the opposite direction and it would be fair to say that many of us are expecting a similar display. It’s important to clarify that the weather plays a crucial part in any great Hardrock performance, so if the weather gods are playing ball I certainly expect to see Kilian on top of the podium and I also will stick my neck out and say he will set a new CR and thus will hold the CR for both directions. On a final note though in regard to the Catalan, his preparation for 2015 has been very different to 2014, yes he has been logging some serious training hours and elevation but he has less time at elevation and we saw how he struggled at Aconcagua. A recent top 10 at Chamonix VK and just this last weekend he won and set a new CR at Mount Marathon in Alaska. The stage is set!

I would be talking about Anton Krupicka now, he finally got an entry in the race that he has always wanted to do and what happens? Injury strikes resulting in a no show for Anton.

Iker Karrera ©iancorless.com

Iker Karrera ©iancorless.com

Step in Iker Karrera. Iker is a machine in tough and challenging races. His Tor des Geants performance a classic example of how he gets his head down and churns out the performance. He’s been 2nd at UTMB but I guess one of the most significant indicators comes from Diagonale des Fous (Raid de la Reunion) when Kilian waited for Iker on the trails encouraging him to the line… Kilian went on to win! Iker can win Hardrock but I think it will be because Kilian looses it if you know what I mean!

©copyright .iancorless.com._1000692

Adam Campbell was 3rd last year in 25:56 and then almost disappeared from the scene. It’s really difficult to say if Adam can repeat his 2014 performance, I personally think he can. He’s had great results before at long and gnarly races. He was 2nd at UTMF in 2012.


Mike Foote has the race strategy for Hardrock 100. Expect to see him hanging back, taking it easy and then applying pressure and slowly making his way up through the ranks. The only problem with this strategy when Kilian is in the race is that he may very well leave himself far too much work to do but 2nd or 3rd on the podium is a distinct possibility. Mike also does know the Hardrock course; he raced in 2010. When you add that to his highest ever placing at UTMB, 3rd in 2012 it’s easy to see how Mike will pressure the front of the race.


Karl Meltzer is back, he managed to sneak through the door and get a place. You can NEVER rule out Karl. His 5 victories at Hardrock provide him with a wealth of experience and as many an ultra runner has said, nobody hikes like Karl! Karl would be first to admit that if Kilian is ‘on a day’ then everyone else is running for 2nd, but you know what, Karl does have the race and experience for the podium. Don’t rule him out! Recently he won yet another 100 at Cruel Jewel keeping his long streak of winning a 100 miler every year for god knows how many years. In prep for Hardrock, Karl also spent 2 weeks on the AT with Scott Jurek.

A quick addition, I missed Troy Howard who has placed 2nd twice at Hardrock. I don’t think he’ll take the win or maybe even the podium against Kilian and Iker but you never know on 3rd place? He recently was 2nd at Wasatch (2014) and 2nd at Squaw Peak 50 (2015).

Who else is in with a shout?

Jared Campbell has tough and gnarly races for breakfast. He’s finished Barkley twice, this will be his 10th Hardrock and although he won the race in 2010 I don’t see him on the podium. But expect him to be near top 5!

Nick Coury has placed 5th and 6th at Hardrock in 2008 and 2013 respectively. Like Jared, he has the race for a top 10 but a podium.

Scott Jaime has placed 2nd and run the Hardrock almost as many times as Jared Campbell. He is a consistent performer reflected in placing 3rd on 2 occasions. Like Jared though, 5th – 10th is a likely result.

Ones to watch:

Jamil Coury, Matt Hart, Adam Hewey and Matt Hart.

On a final note, lets give a shout out to Bryon Powell from iRunFar. I think he’d be the first to admit that he won’t be contending the front of the race but since he got his slot he has trained real hard. Doing the job that we do, I know how hard it is just to get out for a run but to train too, that’s impressive!


Darcy Piceu has top billing as a 3 time defending champion and as such, Darcy is an odds on favourite for a 4th victory. Course knowledge and experience are going to go such a long way and her recent victory (and CR) at Big Horn 50 shows that she is in great form.


However, Darcy hasn’t raced Anna Frost at Hardrock before? I personally feel that if the weather is kind and Anna has no injury issues we may well see a dominating performance that will not only provide a female victory, a course record but a potentially significant performance that will dent the men’s race. That is a bold statement I know, but when Anna is on it, she is on it! She missed Transvulcania recently with injury and of course we all know the highs and lows of the past 30 months. But Anna has been out on the course for a month or so, done the training, adapted herself and as far as I know is fit and healthy.

If Darcy and Anna are firing on all cylinders then I think the rest of the ladies are running for 3rd. The Betsies (kalmeyer and Nye) are legends at Hardrock and between them have 28 finishes. They have the experience and that counts for a great deal in a race like this.

Darla Askew however has the speed but less experience (compared to the Betsies.) In comparison to Anna though, Darla has 2 Hardrock finishes and they were both on the podium! So it would be fair to say that a 3rd is likely again but the potential to leap frog and place 2nd or 3rd is a distinct possibility.


Meghan Hicks has won MDS finished Tor des Geants and may well contend the top 5. Meghan knows how to get it done! The 2015 MDS didn’t go to plan event though she still placed well, at the time she was unsure if she would start Hardrock. I am pleased to see that Meghan is on the start list and I’ll be rooting for her.

Ones to watch:

Pam Reed, Liz Bauer, Suzanne Lewis and Missy Gosney.


Hardrock 100 is a small key race for a select few. However, in its history, Hardrock has always become a highly anticipated race that often plays out like a great boxing match. It is a constant frustration for me that we don’t get ALL the best ultra runners on the playing field at the same time. Pointless me saying this I know as that is one of the quirks of Hardrock.

However, can you imagine a ladies and men’s field of the depth that we see at Western States or Transvulcania arriving in Silverton?

The race starts on Friday 10th July

Race website HERE

Opening race description ©Hardrock100website

A little bit about Hardrock

In the early 1990s an ultra runner from Boulder CO, Gordon Hardman, wanted to create a 100 mile adventure run emphasizing two things: a. link the historic mining towns of Silverton, Ouray, Telluride and Lake City and b. offer each participant an adventure though the spectacular San Juan Mountains while challenging them with altitude, steepness and remoteness. Gordon placed a notice in Ultrarunning magazine soliciting the help of anyone who may be interested in helping pull this together. Within a year Gordon had enlisted a cadre of local runners with deep ties to the area who believed such a run was possible and voila..the Hardrock Hundred Endurance Run was created.

From the beginning, the idea of celebrating the legacy and memory of the hardrock miners was paramount as was the idea that this run should be for those who wanted an extraordinary adventure. Careful attention was paid to developing a route which incorporated the foot trails, wagon roads and burro trails that were constructed for transporting materials to mining sites and hauling ore to market. The Hardrock Hundred follows those routes laid out by those miners who made their living in crags in hopes of making their fortune mining the minerals hidden between the peaks and hidden in the valleys The Hardrock Hundred has stayed true to those ideas to this day and is dedicated to the memory of those wild and tough individuals.

Why Silverton?

The initial idea of Hardrock was to rotate the start/finish of Hardrock between each of the 4 towns. Some demonstrated more excitement about hosting Hardrock than others, chief among those was Silverton. The idea of rotating the start/finish was abandoned and Silverton became the permanent home of the Hardrock Hundred Endurance Run.

Why alternate courses?

After the decision was made to keep the start/finish in Silverton, Hardrock developed the idea that run the course in alternating directions so that runners could experience all that the San Juans had to offer and wouldn’t get tired of the view! Many runners don’t consider themselves true “Hardrockers” till they have finished in both directions.

The “Hardrock” rock is a big deal-how come?

When Hardrock first started, one of the things we forgot to have is a finish line. When an early Hardrock runner asked how we would know when they were finished, run director, Dale Garland, looked around and found a rock in the ground and told all the runners to “touch” the rock to stop the clock. Touching turned to kissing and the small rock in the ground grew into the 2 ton boulder we have now. Today we have one of the most unique finishes in ultrarunning and are always amazed to see the flood of emotion and relief that kissing the Hardrock brings out in those complete their personal adventure of Hardrock. Over the years we have actually had 2 Hardrock rocks, both of which have enjoyed a very special and unique place in the lore of the Hardrock Hundred Endurance Run.

Transvulcania La Palma 2015 #VK Vertical Kilometer


It’s Transvulcania time and an exciting weekend of racing kicked off with the vertical kilometre in the early evening of Thursday 7th May.

Departing from the beach in Tazacorte under glorious sunshine, runners had to tackle the zig-zag pathways above the sea and then run on upwards for a tough 6.6km re-tracing the final descent of Saturday’s 73km main event.

The race was dominated by Alice Gaggi in 59:48 for the ladies and Jessed Hernandez Gispert won the men’s race in 50:38.

Emelie Forsberg refreshed her ski legs placing 3rd as a loosen up for Saturday’s main event as did Manuel Merillas (2nd in the men’s race) both runners are hot favourites for the Transvulcania La Palma.

Anna Frost, although still battling injury issues, placed 4th overall and smiled her way to the finish.



  1. Alice Gaggi 00:59:48
  2. Azara Garcia 1:01:39
  3. Emelie Forsberg 1:02:24
  4. Anna Frost 1:02:42
  5. Stephanie Jiminez 1:03:23


  1. Jessed Hernandez Gispert 00:50:38
  2. Manuel Merillas 00:51:04
  3. James Oucgterlony 00:52:12
  4. Oscar Casal Mir 00:52:15
  5. Diego Manuel Camacho De La Ossa 00:56:29

The Coastal Challenge #TCC2015 Day 6 Drake Bay



TCC 2015 Day 6 Drake Bay 


450m +

 Six days, five stage wins and four course records, what more can we say about the stunning running of South African, Iain Don Wauchope! Iain had no need to race the last day… he says he didn’t! He ran easy, GoPro in hand and had a blast… and still broke a course record.

©iancorless.com_TCC2015_Day6-0400Race director, Rodrigo Carazo said post race:

“I never thought anyone could run this fast on this course. Iain has dominated and made a really tough course seem easy.”


“This is no easy course. It’s a really tough event and I didn’t feel great on day one and two put I have got better as the days progresses. I have loved every moment. It’s a stunning race and the last day around Drake Bay is just so special.”

– Iain Don Wauchope


Breaking news over the night was that second place on GC, Canadian Mike Murphey was taken to hospital with severe dehydration. It’s a great shame. Mike battled to the end to take overall victory and unfortunately he has paid a price. Just goes to show how tough this race is!

©iancorless.com_TCC2015_Day6-0765 Mike’s departure from the race moved the Costa Rican duo of Ashruf Youseffi and Roiny Villegas into second and third but the battle wasn’t over… Roiny saw this as an opportunity and pushed hard throughout the final stage. Opening up a gap, Ashruf was clearly having a bad day. At the line, Roiny had clawed back a chunk of time but not enough to take the second podium place.

©iancorless.com_TCC2015_Day6-3157The ladies race turned into a procession and a celebration. The top five ladies ran side-by-side throughout the race and embraced the scenery and the friendship that The Coastal Challenge has provided. Veronica Bravo’s victory is more than welcomed by the local Costa Rican community and the TCC team; a world-class athlete and adventure racer “Vero’ will run UTMB in 2015 and Costa Rica and Chile anticipate great things!

©iancorless.com_TCC2015_Day6-3347Another Costal Challenge draws to a close. What a race… It’s a tough, challenging multi-day race that constantly provides mixed terrain, relentless heat and high humidity to make it one of the toughest races out there. Joe Grant, Karl Meltzer, Nikki Kimball, Anna Frost, Mike Murphey and Iain Don Wauchope all toed the line of the 2015 TCC and they unanimously agree;

“that is one seriously tough race!”


Overall Classification *times to follow

  1. Veronica Bravo – Chile – 29:35:20
  2. Nikki Kimball – USA – 32:31:50
  3. Maria Rivera – Costa Rica – 34:07:13
  1. Iain Don Wauchope – South Africa – 22:29:08
  2. Ashur Youssefi – Costa Rica – 26:09:54
  3. Roiny Villegas – Costa Rica – 26:23:53

The Coastal Challenge #TCC2015 Day 5 Race Images


Race summary HERE

The Coastal Challenge #TCC 2015 Day 4 Coronado – Palma Sur


TCC 2015 Day 4 Coronado – Palma Sur


2950m +

©iancorless.com_TCC2015_Day4-0866Iain Don Wauchope threw down the gauntlet today! From the gun, he pulled away from every runner in the race and provided a master class of multi day running. From beginning to end, Iain applied the pressure and at no point looked in any difficulty. Climbing the relentless hills and running the descents the clock ticked and by the time the finish tape was broken, Iain had set a new course record for stage four of the TCC… In 2014, Salomon athlete Philipp Reiter had run a fast stage while he battled with Michael Wardian. The time he posted was a new CR; today Iain broke that record by twenty-one minutes. Post race Iain said, “As each day passes, I am getting stronger and stronger. However, nothing is guaranteed.”


Day four was always going to come down to a battle between Iain and Mike Murphey. Mike pushed from the off but had two stumbling blacks: Iain Don Wauchope in the form of his life and unfortunately a bad stomach. The combination of those two elements effectively put an end of Mike’s opportunity to re-grasp a hold of the race. He continued to push, ever the optimist but the writing was on the wall.


The battle for third place was turning into a real nail biter as Youssef (3rd place) and Roiny (4th) went head-to-head looking for the final podium place and maybe most importantly, first Costa Rican. Roiny pushed hard and maintained a small lead throughout the race. His work rate looked too high as sweat poured from his body. But he held on and eventually gained a couple of minutes in the closing stages to take a slender lead and third on general classification.

©iancorless.com_TCC2015_Day4B-1702 Speedgoat Karl ran great for 30km but the heat and humidity took its toll and he was forced to slow in the latter stages to avoid heat stroke. Joe Grant after a tough third stage had a good fourth day after strapping his badly strained ankle.


Anna Frost and Veronica Bravo looked to be having a repeat performance of day three as they approached Cp1 almost side-by-side. The only exception came from Frosty. Every now and then she would pull away on the climbs so that she could run the descents with less pressure. Frosty was however struggling from plantar fasciitis and in the latter stages of the race, Veronica slowly pulled away on the final descent. At the breaking of the tape, Veronica had gained six minutes leaving her just ten minutes behind on GC. With two stages to go, can Veronica pull back that time?


Nikki Kimball once again ran a solid and consistent stage. Running the flats, marching the climbs and just keeping moving, Nikki almost certainly secured third place overall today.


With just two days to go, runners are now on the home straight but the racing is not over. Iain Don Wauchope now has a convincing lead but as this race has shown, nothing is guaranteed…. Anything can happen! Third place overall is a Costa Rican battle and that position is certainly not decided yet. For the ladies, Frosty has a strong lead but Veronica is a fighter. It’s going to be interesting

  1. Veronica Bravo – Chile – 5:19:45
  2. Anna Frost – New Zealand – 5:25:21
  3. Nikky Kimball – USA – 6:05:56
  1. Iain Don Wauchope – South Africa – 3:58:41
  2. Mike Murphy – Canada – 4:37:07
  3. Jeffrey Portuguez – Costa Rica  – 4:48:30



The Coastal Challenge #TCC2015 2015 Day 3 Race Images

©iancorless.com_TCC2015_Day3-0755See the race day review HERE

The Coastal Challenge 2015 #TCC2015 Day 3 Dominical Beach – Ventanas Beach


Dominical Beach – Ventanas Beach


2450+ ascent

 Day three of the TCC is always a significant stage! Combining extremely mixed terrain it suits no one style of particular runner, however, if you are a balanced runner, the stage can play to your hands.

Iain Don Wauchope was stinging a little after loosing the lead after a stunning stage 2 run by Mike Murphey. Kicking off the day, Iain made it very clear that he wanted to make this a race and if Mike wanted to keep overall victory, he was going to have to keep pushing.


The race started with a long section of ‘running’ in a riverbed. It was a run that was part swimming and part bouldering. For those in the know, Iain is a repeat winner of The Otter in South Africa, a race that incorporates all these elements. In his element, Iain slowly opened a lead and at Nauyaca Waterfalls he was clearly showing Mike his intentions.

As the day progressed, the gap between the two front men continued to open as Iain gained time on Mike. A long, tough and technical descent from cp2 was followed by kilometre after kilometre of hot and stunning beach. The sting in the tail; a small dense forest section and then 4km’s of hot tarmac road. With temperatures well over 30-degrees and humidity through the roof Iain showed stunning form by not only winning the stage with a new course record but he had gained enough time over Mike to take the race lead by 1minute and 51seconds.


Mike Murphey had had some nutritional problems during the stage but ultimately, I think he paid the price for pushing so hard on day two with a course record run. Mike’s legs looked like he had been in a war with thorn bushes… they were scarred, cut and grazed from the dense forests. At the end of the beach he was a spent force and he seized the opportunity to submerge himself in a rock pool before pushing on for the line.


Joe Grant unfortunately had a very restricted run due to spraining his ankle the previous day. Joe ran and finished the stage, but any chance of a podium place is now gone. Joe’s misfortune opened up a door way for the local Costa Rican talent, and they currently hold third (Ashur Youssefi), fourth (Roiny Villegas) with Speedgoat Karl in 5th overall.


In the ladies race, Anna Frost ran a smart day matching Veronica Bravo step-by-step. From the moment they started, till the moment they crossed the finish line, the duo never left each other’s side. In many respects, Frosty can run this way all the way to the end now and play safe. The question mark will come if Veronica feels strong one day and takes a risk to pull back the time between the two of them? This is always a risky tactic, push too hard and you may blow up opening a doorway for third place to gain time.

©iancorless.com_TCC2015_Day3-0447Nikki Kimball once again placed third on the stage running as solidly as ever. The heat had taken its toll. But then again, every runner showed very clearly the drain from the course and the weather on their faces. Tough terrain, relentless heat and high humidity make for a brutal combination and this is what sets The Coastal Challenge apart from other multi-day races. It really is tough!


*Images to follow when we can find some wii

  1. Iain Don Wauchope – South Africa – 4:43:12
  2. Mike Murphey – Canada- 4:59:17
  3. Ashur Yussefi – Costa Rica – 5:30:55
  1.  Anna Frost – Australia – 6:25:02
  2. Veronica Bravo – Chile – 6:25:02
  3. Nikki Kimball -USA – 6:52:58



The Coastal Challenge #TCC2015 Day 2 Savegre Valley to Dominical Beach



TCC 2015 Day s Savegre Valley – Dominical Beach


2250+ ascent

Days don’t come much more exciting than day two of The Coastal Challenge… could Frosty pull back the time lost to Veronica Bravo? Could Mike Murphey refocus after going off course on day 1, loosing a chunk of time to Iain Don Wauchope and then going into the red trying to pull back time?

Well the simple answer is yes!

Both Frosty and Mike Murphey showed incredible powers of recovery and lead the race  from the front.


Frosty took an early lead from Veronica Bravo and slowly but surely extended her lead as day-2 threw everything at her; tough climbs, sections of fire trail, gnarly descents, km’s of fire trail, water crossings and then a long hot stretch of relentless beach.


“Today was true Costa Rican; jungle, trail, beaches and wonderful people… oh, and darn hot! I felt good for 20km but I didn’t like the fast section of road but I was able to push to the end. A good day” – Anna Frost.

As the finish came, Frosty had clawed back all lost time on day-1 and took the overall lead of the ladies classification. Veronica Bravo didn’t have a bad day… Frosty was just having a great day. Veronica looked strong and relaxed mile-after-mile and always gave a smile.


Nikki Kimball rounded out the top-3 for the ladies and as we expected, Nikki is just pacing herself. Post race Nikki said, “I am just off ski’s and the heat and humidity is relentless. It’s so different to Marathon des Sables where the heat is dry. But then again, I am not in the shape I was in for the 2014 MDS?”


Mike Murphey pushed and pushed, slowly pulling away and extended a lead over Joe Grant who he had run with over the first climb and descent. Running so hard in this heat, humidity and with such mixed terrain was a consummate performance. Mike certainly showed his speed, endurance and commitment, so much so it gave Mike a course record for the Savegre Valley – Dominical Beach stage. Mike had said the previous day,

“I love some motivation and to chase, so I plan to go for it. I need to pull back the time I lost from going off course and then gain some time for the lead. I love that.”


Joe Grant had felt really good and matched Mike step-by-step in the early stages while Iain Don Wauchope (day-1 stage winner) chased some 90-seconds to 2-minutes back. But Joe rolled his ankle and then had to run cautiously.



Eventually, Joe and Iain joined forces and ran the final stages together but Mike was long gone… they crossed the line almost 30-minutes back confirming Mike as the new race leader with Iain in 2nd and Joe in 3rd.



1-Mike Murphey – Canada- 4:03:57
2- Joe Grant – UK – 4:32:22
3- Iain Don Wauchope – South Africa – 4:32:22


1st – Anna Frost – 4:57:20
2nd – Veronica Bravo – 5:21:05
3rd – Nikki Kimball – 5:35:10

Overall classification to follow (times)

Mike Murphey and Anna Frost are current leaders.




The Coastal Challenge #TCC2015 Day 1 Playa de Ray – Savegre Valley


TCC 2015 Day 1 Playa de Ray – Savegre Valley


850m+ ascent

©iancorless.com_TCC2015_Day1-9696 Day one of The Coastal Challenge is always a tough day. For many, the heat and the humidity are just too great and along with excitement and adrenaline, the early run pace is too fast and the inevitable happens. In past years runners have dropped the ball on the first day and dug so deep in to reserves that they have not been able to recover. It looks like everyone managed to hold back just a little, however, the story in camp post race was one of fatigue, dehydration and intense heat.

After a 0300 start and a three-hour bus drive to the coast, runners departed Playa del Rey at 0800 and within a couple of kilometres the intense heat and high humidity could visible seen as sweat soaked bodies pushed along the strong. Canadian, Mike Murphy was clearly intending to race hard and it was long before he started to open a gap followed by Iain Don Wauchope from South Africa, a couple of local Costa Ricans, Speedgoat Karl Meltzer and Joe Grant.

©iancorless.com_TCC2015_Day1-0642Anna Frost and Veronica Bravo raced neck-and-neck and it was very clear that an interesting battle would develop between the two. Nikki Kimball ran in third, Costa Rican, Maria Guevara and then Samantha Gash.


At Cp1 a pattern was forming as Mike Murphy and Anna Frost opened up gaps in their respective fields, Frosty just had a couple of minutes over Veronica Bravo but Murphy was extending a lead into double -figures.

In the dense forest section that followed, approximately five kilometres later Iain Don Wauchope had taken the lead in the men’s race followed by Costa Rican Roiny Villegas and Karl Meltzer. Anna Frost held a two-minute lead over Veronica Bravo and the stage looked set for a great battle. As runners passed, no sign of Mike Murphy and I was beginning to wonder what had happened?


Murphy later appeared on the trail out of the top ten; it turned out he missed a key right turn that took the runners from a fire road and into the dense jungle. Mike complained the signs had not been in place but that was not correct. The turn had been clearly marked well in advance of any runners!

Eyes focused, Mike pushed hard on the trail looking to pull back time and although running with great speed and style he paid a price in the intense heat and eventually slowed. However, he did pull back great junks of time and he is certainly not out of the fight.

Iain Don Wauchope held on for victory but said, “A great deal tougher than I expected, I really suffered in the heat and slowed a great deal. Everyone did! The heat was just so intense.”


Roiny Villegas placed second, Karl Meltzer placed third, Joe Grant fourth and Mike Murphy closed well to place fifth.

At Cp3 Anna Frost still had a strong lead but at Cp4, Veronica Bravo had closed and passed Frosty. Frosty suffered in the intense heat and had no option but to submerge her self in the river to reduce her core.

©iancorless.com_TCC2015_Day1-9659Veronica pulled away and gained more and more time and eventually gained over seven minutes lead. Post race Veronica said, “I almost didn’t want to pass Anna, but she waved ne through. I couldn’t believe it. I respect her so much. I just held my form, listened to my body and maintained my rhythm.” The coming days are going to be very exciting as Bravo and Frost battle for the lead.

Maria Guevara placed third ahead of Nikki Kimball and Samantha Gash placed fifth.

Day two is going to be a tough day. How will everyone feel, will they have recovered?