For the second-straight year, Andrea Huser took second at UTMB. In the following interview, Andrea talks about why she didn’t think it was her day early in the race, why she didn’t want to catch Núria Picas at the end, how the length of UTMB might just lead to her winning one of these years, and why she’ll be head to Diagonale des Fous in October.
Check out our in-depth results article to find out what happened at UTMB 2017!
Andrea Huser Post-UTMB Interview Transcript
iRunFar: Bryon Powell of iRunFar with Andrea Huser after her second place at the 2017 UTMB. How are you, Andrea?
Andrea Huser: I’m fine, thank you. I didn’t sleep much, but I feel good.
iRunFar: No? Why is that?
Huser: I go late into the bed last night and woke up very early.
iRunFar: Did you have a good celebration last night?
Huser: Yeah, we did some things, but after doping control it was late.
iRunFar: Another year, the same result—are you happy with your second place?
Huser: Oh, yes, I’m very happy. It’s like last year. It’s like a victory for me.
iRunFar: You think you had a very good race for you?
Huser: I had a good race. Yeah, at the beginning, I was not very happy because I felt tired. I didn’t sleep the night before. It was horrible. I thought, No, it’s not my day. Keep going. Have a look.
iRunFar: Meghan [Hicks] said she talked to you at Saint-Gervais at 20k, and you were already “tired.” What happened?
Huser: I told her, “I’m tired.” I felt tired.
iRunFar: Maybe that was nice because you just kept running strong all day. Did it feel that way that you just had a good day all day later?
Huser: Until the night I thought it wasn’t my day today.
iRunFar: In the night did you feel better?
Huser: Yeah, after, I think so. After Col du Bonhomme, my legs came slowly. They woke up.
iRunFar: How about on the second day?
Huser: Quite good. I didn’t have any big crises. At the end, that’s normal. After Champex-Lac, the tiring in the legs starts because after is a very steep uphill, but then I had…
iRunFar: What did you think about the couple changes to the course, taking out the Pyramids Calcaires and taking out the ending?
Huser: The end was a bit… I think it was nearly the same height meters because we had to go up and after we have to go down a long way. I thought, No, I don’t want to go down. I want to go up to La Flegere. It took time to come to La Flegere.
iRunFar: I heard the new descent at the end was very technical and wet?
Huser: Yeah, it was very technical.
iRunFar: Even for you?
Huser: Yes, for me. I had to be very careful there.
iRunFar: If they’d made another course change and they made it 10k longer, maybe you would have won. You had an even closer finish this year than last year. When did you find out you were really getting closer to Núria [Picas]?
Huser: Up to La Flégère, the last refreshment point, they told me she’d been there before 18 minutes. Then I ran down and two guys told me she was 10 minutes before me. I run down, and then 2k before Chamonix after the forest one guy told me, “Núria is walking and she’s two minutes before. If you go fast, you can catch her.” I thought, No, I don’t want to.
iRunFar: But you almost did.
Huser: Yeah, 2k to go and she was in front the whole race, and I thought, I’ll keep going and when I meet her, I’d take her and go with her.
iRunFar: You wouldn’t have just gone?
Huser: No, I decided I’d go with her.
iRunFar: It almost happened. She finished… she was maybe two-and-a-half minutes ahead and she almost didn’t cross the finish line. She went out to say hi to the crowd. It almost happened by accident, I think. Did you think your race this year was as strong or better than last year? How did they compare?
Huser: No, last year I was stronger and I felt better. I felt very good at the beginning and until the end. This year at the beginning, I thought I didn’t have the legs. I was slowly because all the other women started very fast, and I couldn’t. Last year, I felt more comfortable from the start.
iRunFar: You’ve been second here the last two years, does it make you want to come back and do it again next year? You’re so close. It’s not one hour or half-an-hour. It’s seven minutes or two minutes.
Huser: That’s a good question. I don’t know if I want to come again next year. I’d like to win, yes, but I always think there are women like Núria Picas and Caroline Chaverot where I can’t win because normally I’m not at that level, but it’s long enough that it’s possible.
iRunFar: Anything can happen.
Huser: Yes, anything can happen.
iRunFar: Caroline has had another strong year, but you have to finish.
Huser: That’s true.
iRunFar: What’s up next for you?
Huser: Next is Glen Coe.
iRunFar: A shorter race?
Huser: No, I do the ultra, the Ben Nevis [Ultra] in Scotland.
iRunFar: Are you excited for that?
Huser: Yes, very excited as I’ve never been in Scotland.
iRunFar: Any other long races this season?
Huser: Yes, Diagonale des Fous, yes, of course, once again.
iRunFar: Why not? What attracts you to Diagonale des Fous and Réunion?
Huser: I love it. It’s my favorite place. I love the island. I love the route. I love the technical terrain. I love the people. It’s cool.
iRunFar: Make a vacation down there? Congratulations on your great run here, Andrea. See you soon.
Huser: Thank you, Bryon.