I have always loved that simple quote from the movie, ‘Field of Dreams.’ I had the same thought process when I started the Skyrunner National Series in the UK. I was told, Skyrunning in the UK, don’t be silly. It’s not possible.
However, over the last three years the small but perfectly balanced series has gone from strength-to-strength. We had Stevie Kremer and Jo Meek race in year-1. In year-2, Emelie Forsberg, Jasmin Paris and wealth of other world-class talent toed the line.
And last year, the world came to Scotland for the UK’s first ever Skyrunner World Series race. This knock-on effect has seen a sell out 2017 calendar and all the races with in the UK Series personify pure Skyrunning.
The season starts with the V3K in Wales, the series then moves to the Lake District with Scaffell SkyRace and Lakes SkyUltra. Skyline Scotland follows with no-less than three World Series events – in the SKY, ULTRA and EXTREME category, the Mamores VK also joins the new VK Series. Finally we finish in Ireland with the Mourne Skyline MTR.
It’s never good to pinpoint one person, but when Kilian Jornet confirms that he will come to the UK and race in the series. That is worth shouting about!
Roll on June when the series starts – we hope you can join us in what will be the pinnacle of mountain racing in the UK!
Did I mention, he’s having a go at the BOB GRAHAM ROUND too!
Kilian marking his own Skyrunning race, TROMSO in Norway.
Episode 130 of Talk Ultra brings you some audio from The Coastal Challenge with Sondre Amdahl, Jason Schlarb, Anna Comet and an in-depth chat with Cherie Soria and Dan Ladermann. We also talk with UK based fell and mountain runner, Jim Mann.
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Courtney Dewaulter ran 250km (155.3 miles) to set a new American record beating Sabrina Littles best by more than 3-miles. Dewaulter will join Katlin Nagy, Traci Falbo, Jenny Hoffman and Pam Smith in Ireland for the IAU 24-Hour Championships. – That is a seriously strong ladies team!
What a stunning race that turned out to be a Pau Calpell and Azara Garcia show. The two respectively lead from the front to take great victories. Pau (13:21) smashing the old course record set by Didrik Hermansen who placed 3rd in this years edition. Second place went to Lithuanian, Vlaidas Zlabys (13:35) who is going to be one-to-watch this year! Although Azara won the ladies’ race (16:25), she was 1-hour slower that Caroline Chaverots 2016 time. Chaverot dropped at 30km not feeling good! Andrea Huser placed 2nd (17:150 and Melanie Rousset 3rd (17:30).
The Coastal Challenge
Anna Frost won in 27:08. Anna Comet (Spain) and Ester Alves (Portugal) were second and third in 27:58 and 28:23, respectively. Tom Owens dominated the men’s in 22:29. Chema Martinez (Spain) 23:43 and Jason Schlarb 24:34 were second and third. We caught up with Sondre Amdahl, Anna Comet and Jason Schlarb for a post TCC chat.
00:25:10 INTERVIEW with Sondre Amdahl, Anna Comet and Jason Schlarb
At TCC Cherie Soria and Dan Ladermann were a constant inspiration to all competitors. Niandi caught up with them and ‘Coastal’ the dog, back in our hotel in San Jose.
01:30:14 INTERVIEW with CHERIE SORIA and DAN LADERMANN
Iditarod Trail Invitational
David Johnston once again won the 350-mile journey from Knik Lake to McGrath. Conditions this year were very tough with many drops. This is Johnston’s 5th victory – he finished in 5-days, 21-hours, 43-minutes. Second was Kyle Durand… 2-days later! I am not sure if any woman finishes, results don’t show this HERE
Red Mountain 55k
Once again saw ‘one-to-watch’ Hayden Hawks take another victory in 4:15. Rachel Cieslewicz won the ladies’ race in 5:38. Results HERE for the men and HERE for the ladies.
Way to Cool 50k
Cody Reed won in 3:16 and Megan Roche in 3:52 results HERE
Not many race results yet, still early in the calendar but if you are missing watching some of the top runners in the world, take a look at ski mountaineering. The cross over between mountain running and skimo is growing and growing – Kilian and Emelie have long been exponents but runners like Rob Krar, Nick Elson, Mike Foote, Jason Schlarb and so on are turning to skis over the winter months. Currently the iconic Pierra Menta is happening – it’s the Hardrock (on a much bigger scale) of skimo. Read here.
RUNNING BEYOND BOOK
I will be also going to Sofia in Bulgaria on the 17th, 18th and 19th March for a trail, mountain and Skyrunning expo.
Jim Mann is a low-key highly accompolished fell and mountain runner in the UK. However, he like to keep a low-profile. Recently, Jim completed all 3 UK rounds in 1 month… in winter! On the 22nd January Jim set a new winter record for the Charlie Ramsay Round completing it in 22:23. Three weeks later (11th February) Jim completed the Paddy Buckley Round in 21:37. And then theBob Graham Round in 20:26. I had to chat with him!
We say this every show, but Talk Ultra is nothing without downloads and listeners so please help us spread the word.
Please support Talk Ultra by becoming a Patron at www.patreon.com/talkultra and THANKS to all our Patrons who support us. Rand Haley and Simon Darmody get a mention on the show here for ‘Becoming 100k Runners’ with a high-tier Patronage.
Episode 120 – Alex Nichols tells us all about his first 100-miler and how how he won it! Emelie Forsberg tells us about her return to Kima and finding solace and new skills in India. Jasmin Paris is on fire and we sum up an incredible 2016 and ‘another’ round record and finally Speedgoat Karl answers your questions about the Appalachian Trail FKT.
KARL ON THE AT
Some questions from listeners:
Daniel “DJ” Denton Funny: will he burn the van because it has his permanent stench after not showering for over 40 days, and, Serious: did the experience result in a deeper bond/relationship with is father and wife?
Seth Holling What was his thoughts on the smokies? Was the smokies tougher or easier than expected? Would he recommend tacklinnog the smokies first (NB) or last (SB)? Also, did he find a sixer that was left for him at Davenport gap where the AT crosses I-40 🍺
Chris Morgan Ask Karl if he had to push through any injuries?
And if he did how did he do it and did they go away? Or did they become something that needed constant management.
Florian Schuetz What made the difference compared to his previous attempts? Why did he manage to break the time this year? Better fitness, no injuries, mental game, etc.
Brett Slater I’d be interested in his foot care regimen and how he avoids calf issues.
David Nowaczewski Ask him what the heck happened on the day he was found face down on the trail?
Ray Jackson Jr. Ask him how it feels to finally be home and in a place where he can rest without deadlines.
RUNNING BEYOND BOOK is now available in Spain, Germany and Italy and the UK edition will be delivered to UK audiences, USA audiences and Southern Hemisphere audiences from November 3rd: more info – HERE
In the SkyRace (39km) Joe Gray did the double ahead of Tayte Pollman and Patrick Parsel – 4:00, 4:00.3 and 4:11 respectively.
Alicia Shay (now Vargo) won the ladies 4:51 ahead of Kristi Knecht and Sandi Nypaver 4:53 and 4:54
GRAND TO GRAND
Florian Vieux and Emilie Leconte won the self-supported race with Sebastien Nain and Elisabet Barnes taking 2nd.
Became a ‘really’ short race due to bad weather and Dylan Bowman and Fernanda Maciel ran great races to win the 27-mile race
Miguel Heras was back to winning ways with a dominant performance and just missed Kilian’s record. he finished in 12:05.Jessed Hernandez and Cristofer Clemente was 3rd. Cristofer became Skyrunner World Series champion for the Ultra distance.
Gemma Arenas tool the race win and Skyrunner World Series. Hillary Allen and Anna Comet placed 2nd and 3rd in the race.
Jasmin Paris sets another FKT on a UK round in wales
00:29:00 INTERVIEW with Jasmin Paris
Kaci Lickteig and Mick Jurynec/ Ryan Weibel (joint) won in 20:27 and 19:33
Rob Krar was back with a victory at Berkeley Trail Adventure 50 mile
Jasmin Paris does it again…. following on from her incredible 15:24 Bob Graham Round and her 16:13 Ramsay Round. This weekend, Jasmin completed the Paddy Buckley in 18:33 (tbc). That is the UK’s ‘BIG 3 ROUNDS’ completed.
“Paddy Buckley round in 18.33. Had to dig deeper than ever before. Huge thanks to an incredible team for making it possible. Time for a rest!” – Via Jasmin on Twitter
The Paddy Buckley, also sometimes known as the WCR, (Welsh Classical Round) is the Welsh equivalent of the BGR. Considered tougher than the BGR, a record attempt can be considered to take at least 1-hour longer.
Covering approximately 61-miles and 8500m +/- of ascent, the route takes in 47 ‘tops’ within Snowdonia.
Wendy Dodds was the first to complete the round way back in 1982, her time was 25:38. Like most rounds, the aim is to complete the round in sub 24, this was first done in 1985 by Martin Stone. He ran 23:26.
The route as one may guess, was devised by Paddy Buckley and it may be started at any point and can be completed in a clockwise or anti-clockwise direction.
Jasmin very clearly had a desire to complete and maybe set three records on all three rounds in 2016. An incredible feat, especially when one considers what she has also achieved in addition. A 3rd place at the Skyrunning World Championships, 6th place at her first 100-mile race; UTMB. Victory at Tromso SkyRace and the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline which also provided a world series title for the Skyrunner World Series in the Extreme category.
This Paddy Buckley result, in addition to all the other results listed, well and truly places Jasmin as one of the most interesting prospects in the fell, trail, mountain, ultra and Skyrunning world.
The previous ladies record was set in 2013 by Nicky Spinks in a time of 19:02. Therefore, once ratified, Jasmin Paris will hold records on all 3 rounds.
Fastest aggregate time for the three rounds in one year was by Adrian Belton – completed over 29 days in 1989.
inov-8 ambassador Nicky Spinks, the inspirational cancer-survivor and fell runner, marked her 10 years post-diagnosis by becoming only the second person – and first woman – to complete a DOUBLE Bob Graham Roundin a record time of 45 hours and 30 minutes
Starting at 00.01am on Saturday May 14, the 49-year-old farmer from Yorkshire started her 132-mile route across the Lake District’s highest fells in the hope to complete in under 48 hours.
A standard Bob Graham Round involves a 66-mile circuit of 42 summits including 27,000ft of elevation gain, to be completed in less than 24 hours. Nicky was the previous record holder for the Bob Graham Round – 18hrs 06mins completed in 2015. This record was recently recently broken by Jasmin Paris (read HERE) in 15:24.
Nicky managed to do all that twice; running 132 miles and visiting each summit two times on an epic run that involved 54,000ft of elevation gain. The only person to previously complete a Double Bob Graham Round in less than 48 hours was Roger Baumeister, who in 1979 clocked 46hrs 34mins.
Nicky still has the fastest women’s times for the equivalent 24-hour fell running challenges in Scotland (the Ramsay Round) and Wales (the Paddy Buckley Round).
In her blog, Nicky, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2006, said before the attempt:
“I hope to become the first woman to complete the Double Bob Graham Round in less than 48 hours, maybe even breaking Roger’s record time. The main aim, however, is to enjoy it and celebrate the fact that I am still here, living and running ten years after being diagnosed and treated for breast cancer.”
Well, Nicky did that and then some… it really is difficult to comprehend the mental and physical tenacity that is required for such a challenge.
This is Episode 110 of Talk Ultra. This weeks show is a Marathon des Sables special with a load of great content from the Bivouac by Niandi Carmont and then a series of post race interviews with Sondre Amdahl, Elisabet Barnes and Elinor Evans. If that wasn’t enough, we have an interview with Jasmin Paris who has just blasted the Bob Graham Round ladies record to a new level.
It’s a different show this week as we concentrate on Marathon des Sables
Marathon Des Sables
It was a win again for Rachid El Morabity and Russian, Natalia Sedykh dominated the ladies race, times were 21:01:21 and 24:25:46 for the 257km. Full results are HERE
Niandi talk from the Bivouac
00:25:32 INTERVIEW from the Bivouac
A selection of interviews of everyday runners doing extra ordinary things
We discussed this race extensively in a couple of podcasts last year, we spoke with Nikki Kimball and Jeff Browning. Jeff won the race and Nikki decided to withdraw from the race as she felt is was too dangerous. Alarm bells were rung. Unfortunately we have had news of a death at the 2016 edition. We have to be clear here that information is still a little sparse but Ellie Greenwood and Kerrie Bruxvoort have both commented on social media at the races apparent disregard for safety. We will have more information on this as and when possible.
A statement on Facebook from Ultra Fijord said:
The second edition of Ultra Fiord has been a very hard experience, marked by an exceptionally hostile climate and dramatic landscape that formed the backdrop of the race route, that was changed and shortened two days leading to the race to accommodate the impending bad weather. While some runners experienced and embraced the forces of nature, others were beyond their comfort zone. What impacted all of us the most was the loss of 100-mile runner, Arturo Héctor Martínez Rueda. Mr Martínez, 57-year-old from Mexico, had unfortunately passed on at an approximate 65km mark that is about 750m above sea level. Although the likely cause of his death was hypothermia, a confirmation can only be made in the following few days. The unfavourable weather has persisted in this mountain area since Friday, so the rescue team, awaits a favourable weather window to execute the evacuation. The race organiser takes responsibility and apologise for the poor communications to the outside world with regards to this tragic incident, simply because it is a step we could not execute without the confirmation of the status and private communications with Arturo’s family. In this difficult time, the organising team sincerely expresses its condolences to the family and friends of Arturo and ask followers for your cooperation to send peace and respect to them too.
Elisabet Barnes post MDS
Sondre Amdahl post MDS
Elinor Evans post MDS
Jasmin Parishas just elevated the ladies Bob Graham Round record to a new level coming very close to Billy Bland’s benchmark 1982 record
The names Billy Bland and Nicky Spinks are well and truly cemented in Bob Graham Round cement. Imagine it, covering 66-miles (approx) 27,000ft of climbing and crossing the 42 highest peaks in the English Lakes in under 24-hours.
First completed in 1932 by Bob Graham at the age of 42, the 42 peak round has become the holy grail of the fell running world. Just to complete it in under 24-hours is considered by many to be enough, but to set a FKT (Fastest Known Time) is something else.
How does one break the record?
In 1932 Bob Graham took pacers and company to help him in completing his round. It is an ethical and practical approach that the club encourages, and is committed to continue to require as a criterion for membership.
In light of the above, the criteria for Club membership were set down back in 1972. The criterion regarding having one’s arrival at each summit witnessed remains as valid today as ever.
From the Club’s perspective, solo attempts will, for safety reasons, not be recognised or considered for club membership (this includes partly solo rounds, i.e. a round that is only partly witnessed). One of the Club’s purposes is to encourage attempts. The potential risks to a contender are significantly increased should a contender chose to travel solo for around 24 hours in the Lake District mountains. Having company in the mountains enhances the safety factor.
The risk of losing a contender in the mountains may seem far-fetched but there have been deaths of fell runners during much shorter fell races. It is understandable that there is no desire to repeat that experience in a Bob Graham Club context. Were the Club to recognise solo completions for membership, it’s no great step in the minds of loved ones left behind to see that as an endorsement, nay an encouragement, of solo attempts; and families may feel that the Club (which is an unincorporated body) and therefore its Officers should bear some responsibility for a dreadful turn of events.
One claim made for modern GPS devices is that they can provide both veracity and a form of safety, however there have been fraudulent attempts to secure membership over the years; the advent of modern technology to validate a round neither mitigates the safety issue nor removes the ability to defraud.
Allied to solo attempts are attempts where a form of reciprocal witnessing takes place: contender A witnesses contender B and vice versa. This is acceptable, and there have been several such rounds over the years, but not recommended.
There are many accounts of multi-contender attempts having to split up. The most common reason is simply that most people go through a significant bad patch, often for several hours, and hoping that these coincide is hoping for too much. If contenders do have to separate, safety margins are hugely reduced. Pacts not to separate are all well and good at the Moot Hall before setting off but can unravel under the physical and mental pressures of the day. Again if the party has to separate, then the attempt will effectively be over in terms of obtaining membership of the Club.
In summary, the witnessing rule has always been in the Club’s Guidance Notes, and always will be. It is grounded in safety. Clearly in limiting the only help on the fells to a co-contender (who may be in a pretty poor physical state should problems arise), there is a significant reduction in the safety margins for the individuals. Usually a support team of two persons per leg should be adequate, but the decision on the number of supporters and pacers is of course up to the individual.
– Bob Graham Club
Billy Bland’s time of 13 hours and 53 minutes is a milestone and many have questioned, can that time be bettered?. Despite years of trying nobody has really come close; time has stood still. The ladies record set by Nicky Spinks of 18 hours and 12 minutes was set in 2012. Nicky has long been a pioneer of the Bob Graham Round.
That however all changed just yesterday, Saturday April 23rd.
Jasmin Paris, a respected fell and mountain runner, set a new ladies benchmark of 15 hours and 23 minutes. This time is OFF THE SCALE!
Not only does it obliterate the 2012 time of Nicky Spinks but it comes remarkably close to Billy Bland’s time of 13 hours and 53 minutes.
This is just fell running, a low key sport that takes place in the heart of England. Believe me though, in terms of running, this record is one that should be shouted from the rooftops.
Jasmin is a low-key athlete, who hides away from the spotlight despite incredible performances. She races regularly, almost too much some may say. Her response has always been, I have a job and I run for fun and pleasure.
I’ve been saying it for some time, JASMIN PARIS is one to watch and this year, Jasmin will run on the world stage taking part in many Skyrunning events and UTMB.
Episode 63 of Talk Ultra – We have a great interview with Queen of the Fells, Nicky Spinks. An in-depth interview with Morgan Williams all about the Bob Graham Round and we speak to Greg Felll from The African Attachment about what it’s like producing iconic ‘trail’ films such as Travailen w/ Ryan Sandes and Ryno Griesel, Wandering Fever and the Salomon running series of films. We also catch up with Jo Kelsey (Meek) on that incredible 5th place at Comrades Marathon and in Talk Training, we speak with Richard Fluck, the UK’s expert on kidneys and the effects of NSAID’s. The News, a Blog, Up & Coming races and Speedgoat Karl Meltzer is back from the wilderness….
Results from comrades.com
Nedbank Running Club KZN
Nedbank Running Club GN
Samancor Chrome Marathon Club LP
Pietersburg Road Runners
Maxed Elite – KZN
Nedbank Running Club International
Manoko William Mokwalakwala
Maxed Elite International
Samancor Chrome Marathon Club LP
TOYOTA ATHLETIC CLUB
Nedbank Running Club
Toyota Athletic Club
Nedbank Running Club GN
Zola Budd Pieterse
Nedbank Running Club
Pietersburg Road Runners
Toyota AC CG
We have an interview with 5th placed lady at Comrades – JO MEEK
NICKY SPINKS completes the Ramsey Round in a new CR and adds to an impressive list of other ‘Rounds’ records. Hear about this amazing lady…
MELTZER MOMENT with Speedgoat
MORGAN WILLIAMS discusses the Bob Graham Round
TALK TRAINING with Dr Richard Fluck we discuss NSAID’s (Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) and sport.
DR. Richard Fluck, Consultant Physician, Derby City General Hospital, Clinical Director Renal Services and Service Director of Medicine.
Richard went to Trinity Hall, Cambridge and the London Hospital Medical College, London University
He has developed all aspects of nephrology within Derby looking at service delivery, planning, education, teaching, training and research. In his role as Service Director, his major projects have included Emergency Care Reform (Project Lead, Trustwide), EWTD (Directorate) and undergraduate teaching programme (Strategy document for Directorate)
Prior to Derby he was honorary senior registrar and lecturer to the medical unit and the renal unit, within the Royals NHS trust and Queen Mary Westfield College, London.
He divided his time between the medical unit, covering acute general medicine, with interests in diabetes and metabolic disease, and the department of nephrology.
In the last 18 months Richard has been elected onto the Renal Association, and sits on the Clinical Advisory Board. He has designed and led an audit of vascular access in all renal units in the United Kingdom.
He has been a programme chair for the British Renal Society’s Annual Conference in 2005 and 2006 and is involved in the production of Criteria for Success.
His renal research interests included the myopathy of renal failure and disorders of cellular calcium control in uraemia,