El Cruce 2013

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El Cruce this year will celebrate the 12th edition. The format is a three day stage race from Chile to Argentina covering 30 – 40km per day.

Like other multi stage races such as the Marathon des Sables or The Coastal Challenge, runners will sleep in a ‘camp’ each evening. The camp is an important element of multi day racing as bonds are made and memories forged.

El Cruce Columbia

Event dates are 8-10th February for individual runners and 7-9th February for teams.

The ‘solo category‘ in 2013 has an impressive field assembled. It will be without doubt quite a race… Adam Campbell, Iker Karera, Max King and Francois d’Haene take on previous winners Gustavo Reyes and Nelson Ortega.

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The ladies race has Frosty (Anna Frost) hopefully toeing the line feeling refreshed after a winter of recuperation. This won’t be an easy race for her though… the presence of Emma Rocca, Oihana Kortazar and previous race winners Rosalia Camargo Guarischi and Cristina de Carvallho will mean that a battle ‘royal’ will be played out over the three race days.

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This years race sees runners race around the theme of a volcano for each stage. Apparently they will go around, up or down to make a loop. Given the name of ‘Through the Volcanoes‘ the race is billed as a tough three days. The three stages are as follows:

  • Villarica Volcano near Pucón, Chile.
  • Quetrupillan Volcano between Chile and Argentina.
  • Lanin Volcano

With plenty of vertical kilometres this race will certainly suit Iker Karera, Anna Frost and Oihana Kortazar but will Francois d’Haene after his success at UTMB and his top placing at  Transvulcania in 2012 push for the win or will the speed kings  Max King and Adam Campbell make a difference over the three days.

The Andes are a beautiful mountain range. Combined with three days of running and camp life in the evening, the 2013 edition will be a race to remember.

Website HERE

Full runners list available HERE

Skyrunning 2012 Elite Listing

ISF

ULTRA

The Ultra distance races selected in 2012 were held in the following countries: Andorra, France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Réunion, Italy, Spain, USA.  The ranking is based on the best three results of the year – or two results, plus one from 2011, taking into account the top 15 men’s and 10 women’s results in each race.

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The athletes are listed in alphabetical order according to their nationality.

ELITE MEN

AUSTRIA

Wagner Thomas

CANADA

Campbell Adam

FRANCE

Antolinos Fabien, Bringer Patrick, Buffard Sebastien, Camus Sebastien, Chaigneau Sebastien, Chorier Julien, Clavery Erik, Court Sylvain, Curien Yann, D’Haene Francois, Durand Maxime, Gault Emanuel, Guillon Antoine, Lanne Michel, Le Saux Christophe, Lejeune Arnaud, Lorblanchet Thomas, Martin Nicolas, Pasero Mikael, Pianet Nicolas, Rancon Julien

GERMANY

Reiter Philipp

GREAT BRITAIN

Conway Terry, Symonds Andy, Sharman Ian, Grant Joe (?)

HUNGARY

Nemeth Csaba

ITALY

Cavallo Giuliano, Dapit Fulvio

JAPAN

Kaburaki Tsuyoshi, Yamamoto Kenichi

NEPAL

Sherpa Dachhiri Dawa

PORTUGAL

Sa Carlos, Teixeira Armando Jorge

SOUTH AFRICA

Sandes Ryan

SWITZERLAND

Rey Jean-Yves

SPAIN

Bes Jordi, Castanyer Tofol, Jornet Kilian, Karrera Iker, Heras Miguel, Merillas Manuel, Perez Lopez Oscar, Sanchez Sebas

SWEDEN

Buud Jonas

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

Bowman Dylan, Clark Nicholas, Clayton Cameron, Foote Michael, Gates Rickey, Grant Joe, Jaime Scott, Jones Dakota, King Maxwell, Koerner Hal, Krupicka Anton, Mackey Dave, Maravilla Jorge, Meltzer Karl, Olson Timothy, Pedatella Nicholas, Tidd John, Tiernan Zeke, Wolfe Mike

ULTRA

ELITE WOMEN

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BRAZIL

Maciel Fernanda

FRANCE

Chastel Veronique, Combarieu Maud, Favre Corinne, Gobert Maud, Herry Karine, Lecomte Emilie, Martin Sandra, Motto Ros Sandrine, Valero Anne

GERMANY

Bottger Julia, Calmbach Andrea

GREAT BRITAIN

Hawker Elisabeth, Greenwod Ellie

HUNGARY

Wermescher Ildiko

ITALY

Canepa Francesca, Fori Katia

NEW ZEALAND

Frost Anna

SPAIN

Fraile Uxue, Iruretagoyena Leire, Martinez Nerea, Picas Nuria, Roca Emma

SWEDEN

Forsberg Emelie

USA

Africa Darcy, Bosio Rory, Bruxvoort Kerrie, Claridge Rhonda, Howe Stephanie, Howard Elizabeth, Kimball Nikki, Lewis Tina, Moehl Kristin, Nordell Ashley

See the 2012 élite listings: Sky and Vertical

Updated January 16, 2013

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Zegama – Aizkorri

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A highlight of the 2012 race calendar and without doubt a highlight of the 2013 calendar.

Zegama – Aizkorri has opened for pre registrations. Don’t hang around. If you want to race in the mountains on some tough technical terrain with the best in the world, then is is one for you!

Go HERE

Part of the 2013 Skyrunning calendar.

The 2012 edition of the race was remembered for many reasons. A stacked field (Transvulcania had happened just 7 days before) that included Max King, Kilian Jornet, Mike Wolfe, Dakota Jones, Nick Clarke, Tom Owens, Joe Grant, Ian Sharman, Luis Alberto Hernando, Nuria Picas, Emelie Forsberg, Zhanna Vokueva, Lauen JeskaOihna Kortazar and many more…

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The dry and hot volcanic conditions of Tranzvulcania contrasted nicely with the torrential rain, cold temperatures, snow and thick mud of the Zegama-Aizkorri race with tough man of the ultra scene, Nick Clarke saying:

“Now that is a proper mountain race… I wasn’t ready for that!”

Zegama Profile

Race Information

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XII. ZEGAMA-AIZKORRI MENDI MARATOIA

Skyrunner World Series 2013

42.195 kilometres / 5,472 metres of accumulated height gain.

26th of May, 2013

ZEGAMA [Gipuzkoa]

DESCRIPTION

A medium mountain route over the Aratz massif and the Sierra of Aizkorri which includes the four highest peaks in the Basque Autonomous Region ( Aratz – Aitzkorri –Akategi and Aitxuri ). From the town of Zegama ( 296m) you climb up to the high point of Otzaurte (652m ) and then follow a route along paths and mountain tracks of great natural beauty. It combines forests with steep rocky slopes and high grazing land. It is very technical and with a high level of difficulty.

Race Map Zegama

DATE: 26th of May, 2013

START AND FINISH: Zegama ( Guipúzcoa ) –09:00 Start.

TOTAL LENGTH: 42.195 km.

CONTROL POINTS: 14

REFRESHMENT POINTS: 13

FLYING SPRINT: Aizkorri ( 22.58 km )

ACCUMULATED HEIGHT GAIN: 5.472 metres

MAXIMUM ALTITUDE: 1.551m Aitxurri

MINIMUM ALTITUDE: 296m Zegama.

TECHNICAL PERCENTAGE OF COURSE: 70% approx.

CLIMATE: Medium mountain, possibilities of intense heat, strong winds, fog or rain.

TIME LIMIT: 8 Hours.

CLOSING TIME OF CHECK POINTS

RECORDS: 3 hours, 54 minutes, 18 seconds (Rob  Jebb, masculine ).

                    4 hours, 38 minutes, 19 seconds ( Emanuela Brizio, feminine ).

DIFFICULTY: Very high.

MAXIMUM NUMBER OF PARTICIPANTS: 450

Emotions of 2012

What a year! what a year indeed… it is the last day of 2012 and like so many others I wanted to sit down, reflect on what has happened and put a post together documenting some of the special moments of 2012. But as I looked back, so many sprung to mind… many moments I witnessed through social media such as Facebook and Twitter and others I witnessed first hand. So I have decided to select key moments that I witnessed personally, however, before I do that I do want to give a ‘nod’ to some key moments that I didn’t witness first hand…

Australian Pat Farmer finally made it to the South Pole after starting at the North Pole (view here). Pat is a multiple world record holder for endurance running. He has run around Australia and across North America twice.

Salomon launched the Sense. A shoe that created a stir and a buzz that could only be compared to the same sort of buzz around an iPhone, iPad or equally another key moment of 2012, the Suunto Ambit.

Ryan Sandes arguably one of the best ultra performers in 2012 started of his year in style with a win at the Vibram 100km in Hong Kong.

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Micah True passed way from heart related issues while out running in Mexico. The ultra community bonded together as initially he was lost for days causing Scott Jurek and Chris McDougall (Micah was made famous in the book ‘Born to Run‘) to travel to Mexico and aid the search for him.

Jez Bragg won the Fellsman race for the 3rd time in preparation for his attempt on winning the UTMB. Unfortunately Jez was plagued throughout 2012 with stomach issues. We are pleased to say that he now seems to have rectified these issues and is currently blazing a trail on ‘The Long Pathway‘ in New Zealand.

Kilian Jornet announced his new project ‘Summits of my Life‘. A long term project that will take four years, during which he will travel to the greatest mountain ranges in the world attempting to climb some of the most breathtaking peaks and come back down again as fast as he can. Unfortunately on the first project, the crossing of Mont Blanc, the project was struck with disaster as Kilian’s ski guide and partner for the project, Stéphane Brosse fell to his death. Kilian devestated by the incident spent time with Stéphane’s family and withdrew from Western States.

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The big dance, Western States did not disappoint with two incredible performances and two course records. Timothy Olson beat Geoff Roes record with an incredible performance made all the sweeter when you hear his incredible life story… (listen to our interview on Talk Ultra) Ellie Greenwood confirmed herself as possibly the greatest female ultra runner of the moment breaking Ann Trason‘s long standing (considered by many unbeatable) course record.

Ellie greenwood

Dakota Jones after a storming win at Transvulcania La Palma went to Hardrock 100 as the one to beat… as it happened, Hal Koerner took the win with Joe Grant in second place.

Speedgoat 50K raised the question about trail, course markings and when and when you should not deviate from a course… ultimately our one and only Speedgoat made a decision that relegated Kilian Jornet from the top of the podium and replaced him with his team mate Rickey Gates. It all got a little crazy and of course RD’s will now make sure they specify the ‘rules’ when putting a race briefing together.

UTMB – It rained, it snowed, the cloud came in, the course got shortened and Lizzy Hawker won her fifth UTMB albeit NOT the UTMB as it was not a full course, so, Lizzy will be back! Francois d’Haene however was very pleased with his win over the shortened course.

Just a week after the UTMB, Francesca Canepa from the Vibram Team turned up at the super tough and long Tor des Geants and won it… amazing considering just 7 days before she was second behind Lizzy Hawker.

Lance Armstrong… need I say more!

Mike Morton had an incredible 2012 with a stunning performance at Badwater 135 just missing the CR by 75 seconds. In addition to this, Mike ran and won may 100’s all around the 13 hour mark. However his performance of the year came in Poland at the 24 hour Championships. Running 277.54 kms he dislodged Scott Jurek as the Amercan holder and set a new benchmark.

Kilian Jornet went back to his ‘Summits‘ project and set a second record on Mont Blanc. This time crossing from Italy (Courmayer) to France (Chamonix) in 8hrs 40min. Article here

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Fresh from a record attempt over Mont Blanc, Kilian Jornet went to Mt Kinabalu Climbathon in Borneo as part of the Skyrunning calendar, won and became World Champion…. again! Of course this race had some controversy as it didn’t go to the summit. Another outstanding performance was that of Emelie Forsberg, she won the ladies race and in doing so confirmed herself as one of the most talented and dominant females of 2012. Kilian now warmed up went over to Reunion Island and took on the tough ‘Raid de la Reunion‘. He made it look easy and he even had time to do interviews at the feed stations during the race… without doubt, Kilian is one of the most talented and gifted athletes in the world.

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Max King and Ellie Greenwood blazed a trail and set records (once again) at JFK 50… oh, did I mention Max’s run at UROC and did I mention Karl Meltzer and Lizzy Hawker winning at Run Rabbit Run… of course, what about Miguel Heras and Emelie Forsberg at San Francisco 50Darn it…. so many great moments…. what about Lizzy Hawker at Spartathlon, second overall and a new female record.

So finally Skyrunning announce the new calendar for 2013 and the big news is a simpler format, the inclusion of a 100 mile race and a season final in America at the Ultra Race of Champions. Without doubt (I am biased) Skyrunning was a game changer in 2012 and the new calendar has already created great excitement for the coming year…

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Believe me, the above list is by no means comprehensive and I am sure I will look back and think… ooh, what about this and what about that… I could go on.

But now here is my pick of personal moments from a great year. Rest assured, I am picking one month; one moment!

JANUARY

Talk Ultra was launched and thank goodness the format of an ultra running podcast that was more than just interviews was accepted. Taking the risk to do a ‘long show’ seemed to pay off and the loyal followers and support has been fantastic. I can’t thank you all enough for the growth of the podcast and 2013 will see it grow!

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FEBRUARY

For the 7th year running I went out to Club La Santa on Lanzarote and had another incredible week training in the sun with friends and clients. It has become a fixture in my year and never fails to disappoint. 2013 will see us arrive on the Canary Island once again for more fun in the sun.

Lanz

MARCH

A race fixture on my calendar for several years, the EcoTrail de Paris came around once again and I went out to Paris with Niandi for another great weekend of running and spending time in our favourite city. As it turned out we both had terrible races and DNF’d at the same time… you can always learn something!

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APRIL

I was fortunate enough to be invited over to Turkey to take part in and report on the inaugural Iznik Ultra. I had only been to Turkey once before, many many years before and that was to the South. So I  was very excited to spend time in Istanbul with Niandi and then head down to Iznik. The race was superb offering a selection of race distances over a varied course. Both Niandi and myself took part in the 60k event. I was pleased to come away with a win and Niandi made the podium in 2nd place in the ladies race.

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MAY

May signified a change in my year and very much set a format for what was to come… I was invited to the Transvulcania La Palma on the island of La Palma. Skyrunning had assembled one of the most competitive fields in ultra you will ever see or witness. It turned out to be a who’s who of ultra running. The whole experience is a memory I will never forget… training on the trails pre and post race with the best in the world, witnessing the race were Dakota Jones ran an incredible course record for the win and were Frosty (Anna Frost) set and smashed the old course record in what was to be one of the best performances of the year. This was followed with the conference ‘Less Cloud, More Sky‘ providing the ultra community an opportunity to help establish a direction for the sport in the future. We all then packed up and moved to mainland Spain for ‘Zegama‘ but that’s another story…

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JUNE

Zegama arrived and the heat and sun of La Palma was replaced with rain and mud. Lots of mud. Kilian Jornet just 7 days earlier had collapsed on the finish line at Transvulcania La Palma with exhaustion. At Zegama he showed his recovery powers and showed everyone in the race how to run in the cold, wet and mud. Oihana Kortazar took out the win for the ladies ahead of Nuria Picas who was slowly becoming ‘runner of the year’.

Nuria Picas - Zegama

Nuria Picas – Zegama

JULY

The Pyrenees and an invitation from ARC’TERYX to go and test out the new clothing range called ‘Endorphin‘ on the Skyrunning Ribargoza VK course. Great friends, great memories and some stunning scenery.

Arcteryx - Pyrenees

AUGUST

Wow – Trofeo Kima and one of the most impressive run courses I have ever seen. I was told by Lauri Van Houten before the event that this course would blow my mind. Little did I expect what lay ahead… 6 hours being flown around via helicopter on the most stunning and awe inspiring run terrain I have ever witnessed. Kilian Jornet won the mens race and Nuria Picas won the ladies race. A stunning stunning race that signifies everything that Skyrunning is. Want to enter…? Don’t hold your breath. This race happens only every other year and typically only has about 125 places available.

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SEPTEMBER

Berga in September, the weather breaks and Cavalls del Vent turns into a race of survival. Despite runners struggling with hypothermia the race produced a classic. The mens race was competitive seeing Kilian Jornet once again taking the win but this time ahead of Tony Krupicka finally finding some form after over 18 months out of the sport due to injury. Finishing off the podium was Dakota Jones. The ladies race produced the race of the year for me… so often in the longer distance races we see an outright winner crossing the line with 10’s of minutes to spare… not here! Nuria Picas, Frosty and Emelie Forsberg pushed each other right to the line with Nuria taking the win on home ground.

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OCTOBER

Southern France in the town of Millau. The temperatures dropped and I slowly froze myself following the La Course des Templiers, the final in the Skyrunning calendar. I will remember this race for the incredible win by Nuria Picas ahead of a sprinting Emelie Forsberg who put Lizzy Hawker into third place. In addition to this, Kilian Jornet and Nuria Picas were crowned World Champions. Incredible performers in an incredible series of races.

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NOVEMBER

The quiet town of Begeggi on the Italian coast and the Berg Trail. I had an invite from Salomon Carnifast to follow and photograph the race to help promote the first edition of the race. The race was being attended by mountain running legend, Marco de Gasperi. In the weeks before the race I contacted Stevie Kremer who had moved from America to Italy earlier in the year. We had met at Sierre-Zinal where Marco de Gasperi won the race and Stevie placed second. Marco unfortunately went of course in the Berg Trail and therefore spoiled any chances of a win. Stevie however showed her class winning the ladies race convincingly and placed top 10 in the overall. A name to watch for the future…

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DECEMBER

After a stunning year of following races, reporting and photographing I finally took some time out and headed back to the island of La Palma with my partner Niandi to play on the Transvulcania La Palma course. Two weeks of perfect weather and stunning trails provided the perfect end to a stunning year. It was great to spend that time on the trails in our own space and in our own time. Running when we could, hiking when we couldn’t run and walking when no other option was left… the latter half of the year was plagued by knee issues for me and although they havent gone, my time on the Transvulcania course with Niandi was a real highlight in an incredible year!

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I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for the support I have received in 2012. From race organisers, athletes, team managers, brand managers and all those connected to the sport I love. In particular I would like to thank Niandi for her patience. I also need to give a special mention to Lauri Van Houten and Marino Giacometti from Skyrunning for the trust they placed in me for 2012 and the continued trust for 2013.

It has been an awesome year and 2013 is already looking like another year of moments, emotions and memories.

Sincere thanks to all of you

Episode 23 – King, Kremer & Davies

We speak to man of the moment Max King after his incredible wins at UROC and JFK50. Oz fast man, Brendan Davies talks about the ultra scene down under and his win at GNW100. Pocket Rocket Stevie Kremer tells us what it’s like to move from the US to Italy and race at the highest level. Talk Training with Marc Laithwaite is about run shoes. We have the news with Ian Sharman, a blog post with Ellie Greenwood, up and coming races and of course Speedgoat Karl Meltzer.

Libsyn – HERE

ITunes HERE

RSS – HERE

Website – talkultra.com

Show Notes

00:00:00

00:00:45 show start

00:22:00 Interview with Brendan Davies website here

Apart from running, I enjoy a lot of other sports; mountain biking, adventure racing, rogaining, skin/scuba diving and still play social squash. I guess I do these things as I love pushing my mind and body to the limits and being rewarded with fitness, health and friendships that have positive impacts on all aspects of my life. It also gives me the quiet time I need to process all the garbage that life throws at you.

00:51:46 News with Ian Sharman

01:11:00 Interview with Stevie Kremer here

01:32:45 Back to the news

01:38:30 Blog – Ellie Greenwood blog post here

It gets to this time of year and with one racing year winding down it’s time to start planning a little for the following year.  My schedule is never set in stone and I’m sure there will be changes before hitting some of these start lines.

01:42:07 Talk Training with Marc Laithwaite – run shoes

02:09:05 Interview with Max King

Date of Birth:
February 24, 1980

Place of Birth:
Sacramento, CA

Current Home town: 
Bend, OR

Primary Race Distance:
Hmm, 3k to 50 mile. What’s primary mean anyway?

Other hobbies or sports:
Shoes, running up hills, skiing, mountain biking

What MHW/ Montrail gear and clothing is in your quiver for a typical day at/ on the trail? 
Rogue Racers
Effusion Tights
Geist Jacket
Wicked Lite L/S
Power Stretch Glove
If it’s nice then the Ultra Refueler Shorts and Way2Cool shirt.

How were you introduced to your sport? 
I wasn’t always a “team player” and I was terrible at ball sports. I used to crush the other kids in the PE mile though so I went out for track in 7th grade.

What inspires you?
Lots of things: A cold stormy run through deep forest on a flowing single track trail, seeing someone else make a huge breakthrough after months or years of hard training, or just the pre-race adrenaline that comes when all the best racers toe the line.

What advice would you give to newcomers to (your sport) today? 
It’s all about having fun and working hard. There are no special secrets to anyone’s running success, it’s all hard work.

What’s your favorite pre race meal? 
A Hammer Bar or oatmeal.

What the first thing you look forward to doing after a long run / race? 
Eating, I like to eat. A lot. It might not show but I run to eat and I eat to run.

How do you balance your training schedule with your “real” job? 
I quit my real job.

Do you have any pre-race/ pre-competition rituals? 
Sure, but I can’t tell you or it would jinx my superstitions.

In 10 years I hope to be…
Doing the same thing I’m doing today. I envy those guys that are still improving at 40+ and hope that I’ll be doing the same.

Six-word bio:
Pain is weakness leaving the body.

When singing karaoke, what song do you sing to bring down the house? 
If I could even sing, it would be: Bohemian Rhapsody – Queen

What music gets you fired up? 
Linkin Park

If you were a super hero, who would you be? 
Wolverine, he’s just plain bad ass. And yes, I’m a comic book geek.

02:48:40 Back to Karl

02:55:56 A Meltzer Moment with Speedgoat Karl

03:00:00 Up & coming races for the next two weeks

03:01:10 Show close

03:05:24

 

USATF Mountain/Ultra/Trail Awards

The Mountain/Ultra/Trail running (MUT) council of long distance running has named the 2012 USATF Mountain Runners of the year, Ultra Runners of the Year, Trail Runners of the Year, Trail Championship Series winners, and Contributor of the Year.

Who is the MUT?

The Mountain, Ultra and Trail (MUT) Sport Council’s main charge is to give the runners it represents a voice within USATF, our sport’s national governing body.  A love of the outdoors and extreme distances are what bond these runners together.

In order to make their mission a reality, the MUT council and volunteers focus on promoting the sport. Some tasks include team and management selection for major races, fundraising, and developing greater awareness of the sport.  If you are interested in volunteering, contact the MUT Council Chair or any member of the MUT Council. You can also become involved through your local Association.

The Mountain, Ultra and Trail (MUT) Joint Subcommittee was established in 1998 to assist USA Track & Field with the sports of mountain, ultra, and trail running. Prior to that time, the USATF Ultra Subcommittee represented the ultra community’s interests within USATF but there was no parallel group for the country’s mountain runners. With the idea that these two disciplines attracted many of the same athletes and shared many of the same concerns, and with the growing popularity of trail running, the Joint Subcommittee was established. Ultrarunners Tom Johnson and Lorraine Gersitz were asked to serve as Co-Chairs and facilitate the creation of an athlete-centered resource within USATF for mountain, ultra, and trail runners. MUT member Nancy Hobbs coined the MUT moniker at the USATF Convention in Orlando Florida in 1998, the first convention attended by the newly appointed subcommittee members. Two years later, MUT was elevated to the status of a Running Council at the 22nd annual USATF Conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico on December 3, 2000. The Council status gives MUT higher visibility and recognition within the USATF organization, which in turn will help MUT to better serve it’s running communities.

THE 2012 AWARDS

this information is taken from Scott Dunlap and the original post may be viewed here

Tune into Talk Ultra this week (30th November) for interviews with Stevie Kremer and Max King

Mountain men open: Sage Canaday, Boulder, CO, is the recipient of the Lyndon Ellefson Memorial Award as the Runner of the Year in this category. Canaday won the 2012 USA Mountain Running Championship by winning the Mt. Washington Road Race, clocking the fastest time ever by an American. He finished in 5th place at the Jungfrau Mountain Marathon, leading the USA mountain team to a second-place finish in the Long-Distance World Mountain Running Challenge. And in his debut 50-mile trail race, Canaday won the White River 50, breaking the course record by nine minutes.

Mountain men master: Dave Dunham, Bradford, MA, dominated his 45-49 years age group in mountain running and cross country in the Northeast in 2012, as demonstrated by his winning his age group in the USATF New England Mountain Running series and taking first place in his age group in USATF New England Mountain Running Championships. Dunham also excelled in running on trails, roads, and track.

Mountain women open: Morgan Arritola, Ketchum, ID, achieved her Runner of the Year award by winning – with but one exception – every race she entered in 2012. The exception was a stellar achievement in itself: the individual bronze medal at the World Mountain Running Championships; Arritoa led the USA women to the team gold medal.

Mountain women master: Laura Haefeli, Del Norte, CO, led the master’s field at the USA Mountain Running Championships at Mt. Washington, where she was the 4th place woman overall and set the age 44 course record. She was the top female master as well at Loon Mountain, finishing 7th overall and qualifying for the USA world mountain team.

Ultra men open: Mike Morton, Lithia, FL, has won the Ted Corbitt Memorial Award for his selection as the USATF Men’s Ultra Runner of the Year. “Ultra” does not begin to describe Morton’s impressive season in 2012. He won the World 24-Hours Championships, breaking the American record with a distance of over 172 miles. Morton also won the notorious Badwater ultramarathon, a race of 135 miles in Death Valley, California. In addition, Morton had multiple sub-14-hours finishes in other 100-mile races, breaking course records along the way.

Ultra men master: Roy Pirrung, Kohler, WI, competing in the 60-64 years age group, once again won multiple USA titles to become Runner of the Year in this category. Pirrung won the national championship in the USATF 50km Championships at Caumsett Park, Long Island, NY, then came back to win another national title in the Burning River 100-mile USATF trail championships near Cleveland, OH.

Ultra women open: Connie Gardner, Medina, OH, had another blockbuster season in 2012, to win the USATF Ruth Anderson Award as Runner of the Year in this category. Gardner won the USATF women’s 50-mile national championship in both the open and masters classes. She won both the open and masters first-place prizes at the USATF women’s100-mile trail championships. And Gardner led the USA women to the team gold medal in the IAU World 24-Hours Championships, taking home the individual silver medal for second place; in doing so, Gardner set a new American women’s record of 149.3 miles.

Ultra women master: Connie Gardner doubles this year as Runner of the Year in this category, to go with her award as Runner of the Year in the Ultra women open class.

Trail men open: Max King, Bend, OR, for the second consecutive year, is the trail men’s open award recipient. King repeated his victories from 2011 in this year’s USA Half Marathon Trail Championships and USA 50km Trail Championships. He was the winner of the XTERRA National Trail Running Championships, the Siskiyou Out Back 50km Trail Race, the Ultra Race of Champions 100K, and the Transrockies 3-day event, among other fine race performances.

Trail men masterTim Van Orden, Bennington, VT, is a repeat winner in this Runner of the Year category. Van Orden finished as the first masters competitor in the USA Marathon Trail Championships, the USA Half-Marathon Trail Championships, and the USA 50km Trail Championships. In addition to his running, Van Orden competed at the highest levels cross country skiing and snowshoe racing.

Trail women open: Co-winners in this Runner of the Year category are Stevie Kremer, Crested Butte, CO and Megan Kimmel, Silverton, CO. Kremer won the Jungfrau Marathon in Switzerland, the 2012 world championship race, and placed 7th in the World Mountain Running Association Championships. Kimmel won the USA 10km trail championship in course-record time, and finished a close second in the USA Half-Marathon Trail Championships.

Trail women master: Julie Thomas, Canby, OR, was selected as Runner of the Year in this class with a pair of outstanding age-group performances. She was the gold medallist for women in the 40-49 group at the USA Trail Marathon Championships (9th place overall), and the silver medallist for women in the 45-49 group at the USA 50km Trail Championships (8th place overall).

USA Trail Championships Series Winners: Megan Kimmel, Silverton, CO and Jason Bryant, Elkin, NC are the USATF Trail Series Champions for 2012. These individual series winners are the athletes who garnered the most points in the 2012 annual USA Trail Championships (sub-ultra) series of events. The events include the 10km, half marathon, and marathon trail championships.

Contributor of the Year Tom Raffio, President of Northeast Delta Dental, Concord, NH
Northeast Delta Dental and Tom Raffio, the firm’s president and chief executive officer, have been avid and generous supporters of the USA mountain running. Northeast Delta Dental has been the primary sponsor of the USA Mountain Running Championships for the past three years and has committed again to be title sponsor for 2013.

 

Ultra Race of Champions

The best of the best, one course, one day?

Erm, well, not really…. UROC wanted to bill itself as the best of the best but it will be a race of the best of the best that turn up!

Joe Grant, Dakota Jones and Tony Krupicka are in Spain preparing for the 84km Cavalls del Vent Ultra Skyrunning race and this therefore leaves a few notable names missing from UROC. When you add to that Run Rabbit Run happened just a few weeks ago, it also means that Timothy Olson, Mike Wolfe, Karl Meltzer and Dylan Bowman will be doing other things and of course Geoff Roes is out of racing at the moment as is Mike Wardian…  In the ladies, Lizzy Hawker is at Spartahlon, Frosty is at Cavalls, Devon Crosby Helms is injured, so, who is left to race?

Well actually, UROC still has a very competitive field and of course the terrain and the distance will suit the fast guys and girls.

Top tip is Dave Mackey who races so well at 100k closely followed by Ian Sharman. Ian has been running super quick lately and setting a few CR’s. The distance and the speed will suit him. Dave James is toeing the line but raced Run Rabbit Run and that has got to have taken something away from a great UROC performance, however Nick Clarke will be arriving fresh, however, true to form he may well take 3rd place ;-).

Notable newbies and potential race winners are Max King and Sage Canaday. Max with a 2:14 marathon pace is super quick and although this is longer than he normally runs he always comes to a race super prepared and once again 2012 has been a great year for him with top 3 at Speedgoat and Pikes Peak plus other notable wins! Sage in a rookie year had an awesome run at White River 50 mile which didn’t quite the coverage it should have… this may keep him a little under the radar but 4th at Pikes Peak and a win at Mt Washington will mean he is one to watch

The ladies race will be won by Ellie Greenwood (I am almost certain) and she will probably figure highly in the mens race too! I don’t need to go into what Ellie has achieved as it would be easier saying what she hasn’t… the ladies race does have one or two contenders but unlike the mens race where anything can happen, the ladies race is really more about who will be 2nd and 3rd? Names to look out for are:

Ragan Petrie winner of last year’s UROC 100k, Krystle Martinez, Jacqui Palmer and Verity Breen as an outsider.

Real Time Race Splits HERE

Video Coverage HERE

Speedgoat 50K & Giir di Mont

Two great races – many great champions. Winners at Saturday’s Speedgoat 50k , the second World Series Ultra, were Kilian Jornet and Anna Frost.  Jornet finished in 5h14’10” breaking the course record.  Rickey Gates was a close second in 5h18’27”  followed by Max King (5h23’10”) and Anton Krupicka (5h23’36”) 4th in a great come-back after his long lay-off. You can read my pre-race predictions here

The result was not without controversy however as Jornet was declared winner but his record and prize-money withheld for ‘cutting switchbacks….. I will be interviewing Speedgoat Karl for a ‘Meltzer Moment’ on episode 15 of Talk Ultra so make sure you tune into the show to hear what he has to say.

Anna Frost, despite worries of not being on top form, led the race from start to finish. Kerrie Bruxvoort was second while local runners Sarah Evans and Emily Sullivan where third and fourth, respectively.

Back in Europe at Italy’s Giir di Mont, predictions aside, no-one was ready for American Kasie Enman’s triumphant win and record together with Tofol Castanyer’s great come-back in a stacked men’s field.  Brit Tom Owen’s was second and Luis Alberto Hernando, third.

The men’s field was an exciting match with Rumenian Ionut Zinca leading strongly in the first part of the race, before ceding to pressure on the final ascent from Hernando, with Castanyer and Owens alternating the lead. Owens was hampered on the final downhill due to severe blisters from last week’s Dolomites SkyRace® but managed a heroic second position.

In the women’s field it was Enman’s race from start to finish, breaking the course record and closing 14 minutes ahead of her competitors.  Sweden’s Emelie Forsberg kept a steady second place throughout most of the race, to be overtaken by Silvia Serafini – Italy’s new skyrunning hope.  No doubt last week’s superb record at the Dolomites SkyRace® took its toll on Forsberg who slipped down to fifth position. Oihana Kortazar finished third, not on her best form and Blanca Maria Serrano, fourth.

After the weekend’s races, the Skyrunner® World Series ranking is lead by Luis Alberto Hernando, Kilian Jornet and Tom Owens and Emelie Forsberg, Blanca Maria Serrano and Kasie Enman.

On August 9th I will be heading out to Switzerland to report live and record some interviews at the next World Series’ race on August 12 with another star-studded line-up at the Course de Sierre Zinal in Switzerland.

Follow us on twitter and Facebook for latest updates.

Skyrunner® World Series ranking

Speedgoat 50k 2012 – Ultra Skymarathon Series

Start training now….. cuz’ it’s gonna hurt!

What else would you expect from Speedgoat Karl Meltzer. In 1989, Karl moved to Utah and in his own words became a ‘ski bum’. But in 1990 he started to run and in 1996 he became an ultra runner. To date he has 55 race wins, 47 of them in ultras. He has won Hardrock 100 5 times, Wasatch 100 6 times, Massannutten 100 3 times and in addition to this he has run the Appalachian Trail, 2176 miles in 54 days, 21 hrs and 12 min and recently, in 2010, he did the Red Bull Human Express running from CA to St Joseph, MO a distance of 2064 miles in 40 days. So, he likes races that are tough, long or a combination of both.

Speedgoat 50k is no different. What it lacks in distance it makes up for in severity and vertical gain.

This race consists of 11,420′ of total climbing. With the whole race taking place above 7600′, with the majority above 9200′. Karl is proud when he says:

“it is the most technical race east and west of Snowbird Ski Resort.”

Rocky, Rooty, snowy, very steep hills, even steeper descents all over nasty, wet rocky terrain. If you like a fast 50k, this race is NOT for you. Needless to say, there is nothing easy about it. If you enjoy tough races, this race is for you.

photo by Jared Campbell

The 2012 edition of the Speedgoat 50k is now part of the new Skyrunning Ultra Skymarathon Series. The first race in the series was the 80km Transvulcania La Palma in the Canaries, won by Dakota Jones in the mens race and Anna Frost in the ladies race.

Ultra SkyMarathon® Series

*SPAIN:  TRANSVULCANIA ULTRA MARATHON – La Palma – May 12 
USA:  Speedgoat 50K – Snowbird, Utah – July 28
ITALY:  Trofeo Kima UltraSkyMarathon® – Valmasino, Sondrio – August 26
SPAIN:  Cavalls del Vent – Cadi-Moixeró Natural Park – Pyrenees – September 29
FRANCE:  La Course des Templiers – Millau, Grands Causses – October 28

Race Director – Speedgoat Karl Meltzer

The addition of Skyrunning to the Speedgoat 50K means that it’s profile for this year will be greatly increased. When I spoke to Karl, his excitement was palatable:

“I’m stoked, the race is gonna be sick. We have a stacked field and in the mens race it is almost impossible to predict who will triumph the field it is so competitive. Anton Krupicka is using this race as his ‘comeback’ after a long lay off, last years winner Nick Clark will toe the line and from Europe we have Thomas Lorblanchet from France, young star Philipp Reiter and of course the ‘king’ himself, Kilian Jornet from Spain. In the ladies race we have a great field but it’s less deep than the mens and providing that Frosty (Anna Frost) is fit and well she is the out and out favourite but Nikki Kimball will be hot on her heels”

Karl also added;

“This year we are proud to announce a $10,000 prize purse, with a few extra $1000 for incentive bonuses on the mountain. Top 3 runners will recieve the cash awards.”

So as Karl has pointed out this is a stacked field. But who will win the race and can the course record of 5:43:20 set by Kevin Shilling set in 2010 be taken down… certainly one would think that if the record is going to fall, this may very well be the year!

Predictions MEN:

Anton Krupicka has been racking up his training and made the decision not to race at Hardock and make sure that his recovery from injury was more controlled. Speedgoat 50k is his first race in 18 months and one has to assume that if he is turning up, he is turning up to race!

Anton Krupicka

Kilian Jornet missed Western States after a tragedy during one of his ‘Summits‘ attempts but returned to racing form with a Vertical K win at Mont Blanc and then a win in the Mont Blanc Marathon. He was then in Spain for the Kilian Classic and then this coming weekend, 20-22nd July he will be racing in Italy at the Skyrunning Dolomites race. The Speedgoat will certainly suit Kilian.

Kilian Jornet

Nick Clark had seemed a little despondent with his racing form in early 2012. He had expressed to me on several occasions that he just wan’t ‘firing’ on all cylinders. Particularly his race in Zegama made him re think. But re think he did and once again turned up at Western States and came away with a podium place. Nick has won the Speedgoat before and holds the third fastest time on the course at 5:46:38. You can never rule Nick out.

Nick Clark

Max King is not an ultra runner as such but he is a mountain runner and on paper is the fastest marathon runner at the race. Max also had a disappointing race at Zegama but the 50k distance and this course may very well play into his hands.

Max King

Joe Grant has previously run the Speedgoat race and holds one of the fastest top 10 times with 6:12:15 (almost half an hour slower than Nick) but in 2012 he has increased strength and has excellent form. However, Speedgoat falls just 2 weeks after Hardrock 100 and after a superb 2nd place at that super tough 100 miler one has to ask if Joe will have recovered to be able to ‘race’ at Speedgoat.

Jason Loutitt is a top mountain runner and has placed 2nd at the IAU Ultra Trail Championships, has won Hurt 100 and is quick over the marathon distance. All these elements make him a real contender for the Speedgoat title.

We said this field was stacked and from Europe we have Thomas Lorblanchet and Philipp Reiter, both of these runners raced at Transvulcania La Palma and placed well. Philipp in particular has won several races and most recently was victorious at the Salomon 4 Trails. The fifth fastest time ever recorded at Speedgoat was set by Erik Storheim with 6:08:42 in 2009 he has race experience and along with Nick Pedatella they may prove to be the dark horse outsiders.

Predictions LADIES:

Anna Frost is the out and out favourite after a stunning run at the Transvulcania La Palma, she not only obliterated the ladies record but made big inroads to the overall results and nearly creep into the top 10 overall. However, she has recently posted on her blog “Currently placing a question mark over this race with fatigued legs still keeping my two feet on the ground.” so we are unsure if she will race…

Frosty – Anna Frost

Nikki Kimball is back on form! No doubt. She showed some real emotion on the finish line of the Transvulcania La Palma with a stunning 3rd place and then pre Zegama with tired legs I asked her how she intended to race “I’m gonna kick ass!” and she did placing in the top 10. Her most recent top 5 at Western States in 18:31 is a further indication that she will be turning up at Speedgoat to run and race hard.

Nikki Kimball

Meghan Arbogast is fast! Certainly she is more suited to the flatter, fast courses and she excels on the road. She placed 10th lady at Western States in 19:45. Meghan will be up at the front of the ladies race and the shorter distance may well play into her speed hands!

A fight for the podium may very well come from Julie Bryan who has had two wins in 2012, admittedly over shorter terrain and more notably Kerrie Bruxvoort who has won 3 50k races; Golden Gate Dirty Thirty, Greenland Trail and Mesquite Canyon. My outsider would be Bethany Lewis.

 

photo by Jared Campbell

You can hear pre race chat and post race chat with race director, Karl Meltzer in a Meltzer Moment on Talk Ultra. Episode 14 will be released on Friday July 27th with pre race chat and episode 15 released on Friday August 10th will have analysis, results and hopefully some interviews from the race. Shows are available on iTunes and Libsyn

Race Website HERE

Skyrunning (ISF) HERE

The African Attachment – Salomon

Within minutes of recording audio with Greg and Dean from The African Attachment for episode 11 of Talk Ultra and they release the next instalment in the Salomon Running TV S2 E03 – Learning at Zegama.

This episode features Emelie Forsberg who placed 3rd at the Zegama race.

It’s a wonderful film that sums up the spirit of why we run… the passion, the bond, the learning curve and importantly the friendship.

Footage shows the severity of the Zegama course, the ability of the runners and the passion of spectators.

This is why I love running. Why I love ultra running…. enjoy!