François d’Haene is having a great 2012. He’s won the TNF UTMB (post-race interview), bottled his first wine harvest (more on that in this interview), and won the Oxfam Trailwalker 100k with his Salomon France teammates. In the following interview, find out how long it took him to recover from UTMB, what his recent run at Trailwalker means for his race this weekend, and more about his wine.
We’ll be providing live coverage of the TNF 50 on Saturday. [Update: We’ve posted full 2012 TNF 50 results with links to many other race resources, including to a post-race interview with d’Haene, who finished second.]
[Click here if you can’t see the video above.]
François d’Haene Pre-2012 TNF EC 50 Mile Interview Transcript
iRunFar: Bryon Powell of iRunFar here with Francois d’Haene before the 2012 The North Face 50 Mile Race. How are you doing, Francois?
Francois d’Haene: Good, thank you. You?
iRF: Excellent. Last time we talked, you had just won UTMB. How has life been since then?
d’Haene: Life is very good. It was difficult for me to recover after UTMB. It took two months to begin new training and to program the end of my season. There was a race in Hong Kong a week ago.
iRF: Were you on the team that won the Oxfam Trailwalker 100k?
d’Haene: Yes, it was a team race. It was different, but I think it was in good spirit. There was a lot of emotion. We can discover a new country which is beautiful.
iRF: I’ve just learned more about the Trailwalker over the last couple weeks. It’s very interesting. It’s a team race, not a relay, and it’s four people.
d’Haene: Yes, it’s four people together start to finish.
iRF: So if you’re having a bad day and Julien [Chorier] feels good, then he has to wait for you.
d’Haene: Yes, but it’s the other way. Julien had a bad day.
iRF: I didn’t know.
d’Haene: It’s a very good adventure. We need to wait so everybody runs together and to take care of each other. At every moment, you must go at the speed of the slowest person. It’s difficult.
iRF: It sounds like an emotional challenge.
d’Haene: I think at the end of the season it’s very good because you can reward the team and I think it’s very good.
iRF: How has your recovery been since then? It was a 100k race.
d’Haene: Yes, it’s very short. For me, this [weekend’s] race is a bonus race. I’m really happy to be here. It’s good to be in the US. I’ve never been to the US before. It’s the first time for me. I like to be here. I would like to try to do something. I trained a lot this week, and I have no pain. I feel tired, but I don’t know if it’s jetlag or from Trailwalker. I tried to sleep good today, and maybe on Saturday it will be a good day for me. I will see.
iRF: If you do have a good day, you can celebrate with… (grabs bottle of wine)
d’Haene: My new wine, yes. This is what I do after UTMB. I spoke with you in our last interview that I have a business in wine. This is the first of the season of my wine. Now I bring it here.
iRF: Does it feel like having a baby? Having a child? Are you very proud of it?
d’Haene: Yes. It’s very long to have this wine because you must have a lot of work from January to September. It’s the result of all your work. For me, it’s the first time I can do that, and I can transform my fruit into the wine. It’s very, very special for me.
iRF: Congratulations. Good luck this weekend.
d’Haene: Thank you. I hope we can drink it. Thank you very much.