Jonas Buud Pre-2016 Ultravasan Interview

Jonas Buud has won both editions of the Ultravasan 90k, including last year when he set the blazingly fast course record of 5:45. In the following interview, Jonas talks about what’s hampered his training of late, who’s the man to beat this weekend, and why he’s run more races outside his forté this year.

For more on who’s running the race, check out our Ultravasan preview. Be sure to follow our live coverage of Ultravasan starting early Saturday morning in Europe, which is Friday night in the US.

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Jonas Buud Pre-2016 Ultravasan Interview Transcript

iRunFar: Bryon Powell of iRunFar here with Jonas Buud before the 2016 Ultravasan. How are you?

Jonas Buud: I’m okay.

iRunFar: Just a normal day for you here in Mora?

Buud: Yes, I think so.

iRunFar: We’re here at the finish line which you’ve been the first runner to the last two years. Do you think you have it in you to do it again?

Buud: No, not really.

iRunFar: No? Why is that? That’s not the normal Jonas Buud I’m used to.

Buud: I’ve been having some problems the last three weeks with my trail running especially.

iRunFar: Yeah? With your Achilles? How did that come about?

Buud: Yes. It was about two weeks ago during a training. I was running. The plan was to go 29-30k. After 20k I started to feel pain. I continued to run back to the car. I came home and started to feel it a bit more, and in the evening, a bit more even. In the morning, it was terrible. I couldn’t hardly walk. I took some days before I could walk normally again. I had to do some cycling and not so much running. After a week it felt a little bit better. I started to run again, but it came back. I’ve been cycling and trying to run a little bit.

iRunFar: Do you have any hypotheses as to what caused it?

Buud: No, not really, maybe a little bit too much running?

iRunFar: You’ve been doing some more racing this year especially racing on more mountainous terrain. Do you think that might have anything to do with it?

Buud: I think it can be many different pieces that have done this. I don’t know. It was at the end of June that I was at Lavaredo Trail and this is so many weeks after. I don’t think it’s that.

iRunFar: Last year you were injured for a good portion of the beginning of the season. You normally bike a lot anyway. How does three weeks of less training sap your confidence?

Buud: It’s not good, because I want to run. If you can’t run for three weeks, it’s difficult. It’s 90k. You must run. You can’t cycle on Saturday, so it’s going to be tough I think.

iRunFar: Who do you think is going to be your biggest competition out there?

Buud: I think Steve [Way]. He knows the course. He was also here two years ago, and he knows the course. I think he will want to compete well this year.

iRunFar: It was a close race two years ago, yes?

Buud: Yes, until half way.

iRunFar: Until half way, much like last year. This year, there was a little change on the course, a little more technical terrain.

Buud: Yes, but it’s less than two years ago when Steve was here, so it’s better for Steve this year than it was two years ago.

iRunFar: The course has been different all three years, and this is the middle?

Buud: Yes, I think so.

iRunFar: You’re, of course, familiar with that terrain. For folks who haven’t raced it, what’s it like?

Buud: The new part is a little bit more technical. It’s singletrack with a bit of stones. It’s a really nice part. It’s in the forest. It’s a really beautiful area.

iRunFar: So it’s more technical than the rest of the course, but it’s not overly technical?

Buud: No, no, it’s a really nice part. It’s beautiful.

iRunFar: About how many extra kilometers? Not extra distance, but change?

Buud: I think it’s 4-4.5k.

iRunFar: There’s almost now 13-14k of technical trail on that stretch?

Buud: Yes.

iRunFar: This year—unlike last year where you were injured early and didn’t run a lot, cycled a lot, didn’t race a lot—this year you’ve been racing since February.

Buud: Yes, I made three races in Ultra-Trail World Tour. It’s been really fun.

iRunFar: What did draw you to those? Last year you had tremendous success here and World 100k. What had you going toward more technical, mountainous terrain?

Buud: It’s fun to try new things also. I really love to run in the mountains also. I don’t think that course, it’s good for me, but I want to have so many hills. I want to run flat. But I really love to run in the hills also.

iRunFar: Obviously you’ve had some great success at Comrades in the past. What went wrong there this year?

Buud: I was sick two weeks before Comrades. I just got in shape to run one or two days before Comrades, so it was bad preparation for Comrades also.

iRunFar: Before you got injured a couple weeks ago, do you think you were in similar shape to last year?

Buud: Yeah, I think so. I think I was in good shape.

iRunFar: If I recall correctly, and please correct me if I’m wrong, last year before this race you were doing a lot of cycling as well and not a whole lot of running. So… you ran 5:45 here last year off cycling.

Buud: Yes, but the weeks before the race I could run really good, and I felt really strong in the run. Now, I haven’t run for three weeks almost, so it’s a little bit different.

iRunFar: What’s the weather looking like for this weekend?

Buud: It’s going to be really nice running weather, I think… maybe a little bit rain. But it’s not too hot and not too cold. I think it’s going to be really good conditions.

iRunFar: By rain, not a lot of rain? A nice cool day?

Buud: Oh, no. And the course is also really dry right now. I think it’s going to be a fast course.

iRunFar: Even a little bit of rain is not going to slow the race?

Buud: No, I don’t think so.

iRunFar: Awesome. You think Steve is going to be some good competition. Anybody else out there?

Buud: Yes, there are a lot of runners, good runners this year. I think Steve has the advantage as he was here two years ago. You think that’s a big help on this course?

Buud: Yes.

iRunFar: You’ve seen this course more than anybody, so even if you’re a little low on confidence going in, best of luck out there and enjoy.

Buud: Thank you.

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