Dmitry Mityaev Post-2019 Transvulcania Ultramarathon Interview

Russia’s Dmitry Mityaev took second at the 2019 Transvulcania Ultramarathon, his second time finishing in second place. In this interview, Dmitry talks about how the race unfolded from his perspective including how the early part of the race went when he and other men stayed behind leader Petter Engdahl; how he worked with eventual winner Thibaut Garrivier in the middle of the race to bridge the gap back to the lead; what happened on the 2,400-meter, 18-kilometer descent that ultimately decided the men’s race; and if he’s pleased with his finish.

Don’t miss our results article which describes the full race story.

Dmitry Mityaev Post-2019 Transvulcania Ultramarathon Interview Transcript

iRunFar: Meghan Hicks of iRunFar and I’m with Dmitry Mityaev. You’re the second-place finisher of the 2019 Transvulcania Ultramarathon. And also we’re Katya Mityaev who finished also in the top-10 women yesterday. She’s doing some translation. Congratulations to both of you on your runs yesterday.

Dmitry Mityaev: Thank you so much.

Katya Mityaev: Thank you so much.

iRunFar: So it’s the morning after. Some sore legs, some sore joints, but a good breakfast in the hotel breakfast buffet. Overall, how are you feeling?

Mityaev: Yeah, thank you. Everything is okay. I feel pain but it’s okay after a race.

iRunFar: You said you feel some pain but it’s okay?

Mityaev: Yeah. Yeah.

[sound of an airplane]

iRunFar: There goes some runners. They’re flying home right now. [laughs] Well, second for the second year in a row here at Transvulcania. How does that feel?

Mityaev: Yeah. I’m very happy to be second place again. Now, everything is okay. Yesterday was very hard day. It’s very, very hot. From the start, guys very fast, first uphill I ran on my pulse. My feeling is not so good from the start yesterday. Yeah. I didn’t, not fresh.

iRunFar: Like heavy legs, or what were the feelings?

Mityaev: Feeling, yeah. First uphill for me was very, very hard. Yeah. After first half distance, I feel better.

iRunFar: Okay. Do you mean half the race or a half-marathon distance, or when did you start to feel better?

Mityaev: Uh, after first half distance.

iRunFar: Of the race.

Mityaev: Yeah. After 40 kilometers.

iRunFar: So like after, while you were doing the climb from Reventón up to Pico de la Nieve, you started to feel like yourself?

Mityaev: Yeah.

iRunFar: Okay. I want to ask you what your thoughts are on Petter Engdahl. He took the race out pretty fast and got quite a big gap on the rest of the men including you early in the race. What were your thoughts? Were you like well, there’s nothing I can do, or we’ll chase later, what was going through your head?

Mityaev: Yeah, Transvulcania is a long distance, yeah.

iRunFar: [laughs]

Mityaev: It’s very fast from the start. Very fast run, better day.

iRunFar: Yeah.

Mityaev: I think maybe I can catch first men.

iRunFar: Got it. You thought maybe be patient first and then we see what happens later.

Mityaev: Yeah.

iRunFar: So, talk about the part of the race where you started to feel better and you were able to sort of compete and play a little bit. I just interviewed Thibaut [Garrivier], the men’s winner, and he talked about the two of you worked together up on the volcano rim to try to catch Petter and you were taking splits and watching. Talk about what was going on there.

Mityaev: Yeah. For me it was very comfortable to run together. We see Petter far off. We believe we can catch Petter, yes.

iRunFar: And at that point you and Thibaut were actively helping each other, like working together.

Mityaev: Yeah, yeah. For me it’s very, very perfect.

iRunFar: Go ahead.

Mityaev: Yeah.

iRunFar: Roque de los Muchachos is quite high. You’re up at 2,400 meters, but I heard that, I wasn’t there myself, but our reporter said that it was quite hot. That may have been the hottest part of the course yesterday. How did the weather conditions feel?

Mityaev: For me, it’s good. After 40 kilometers it was very, very hot. First half distance is weather, good. For me it’s very, very hot is not so bad. Before Transvulcania I trained in Turkey.

iRunFar: Yeah.

Mityaev: Weather same.

iRunFar: And you were also training on the Canary Islands, too.

Mityaev: Yeah, yeah.

iRunFar: It all is just warm weather for you.

Mityaev: Yeah.

iRunFar: Now, a lot of men that I talk to talk about your downhill running. They say Dmitry is quite a downhill runner. Were you pretty excited to get to Roque de los Muchachos where you knew now is a long descent?

Mityaev: No.

iRunFar: No? [laughs] Why not?

Mityaev: I’m not very fast downhill.

iRunFar: You don’t think so? Okay. You and Thibaut worked together also on the downhill, but I think at first he took a fall, and you got a little bit ahead, then later on you took a fall and he got ahead. And in the end that’s where the race for win played out, and he arrived down at the port a few minutes ahead of you.

Mityaev: Yeah. Last downhill after 55 kilometers I fell. I stopped for a second, I feel pain. I lost contact with…

Katya Mityaev: It’s not so good.

iRunFar: It was a tough time.

Mityaev: Yeah. I could not fast downhill, second half last downhill.

iRunFar: Okay. You looked really happy, and also it was a sense of relief at the finish. Were you just happy to get across the line?

Mityaev: Yeah. More emotion. I like Transvulcania. It’s very, very, good atmosphere. Yeah. I’m very happy.

iRunFar: In the end you are happy.

Mityaev: Yeah.

iRunFar: Now are you spending the rest of your season racing skyraces? Or are you also doing other races?

Mityaev: Yeah. Next race in four weeks is Madeira Skyrace.

iRunFar: Okay. Another island in the ocean. [laughs]

Mityaev: [laughs] Yeah. Today, come back to home to Russia.

iRunFar: You go home today?

Mityaev: Yeah.

iRunFar: Oh okay.

Mityaev: For a week. Then come back to island in the Atlantic Ocean.

iRunFar: Is that right? You’ll go to Russia for a week and then go to Madeira for a couple weeks?

Mityaev: Yeah. After Sky Madeira I will run [adidas] Infinite Trails.

iRunFar: Okay.

Mityaev: After, High Trail Vanoise or BUFF Epic Trail.

iRunFar: High Trail is another long one. Like, it’s a lot of kilometers.

Mityaev: Yes. My favorite race.

iRunFar: Really?

Mityaev: Yeah. I like races more altitude. For me, more snow, very beautiful race. High Trail Vanoise this year is not a Skyrunner World Series race.

iRunFar: Which one? I’m sorry. Which race?

Mityaev: High Trail Vanoise.

iRunFar: Oh, it’s not?

Mityaev: Yeah. This year it’s not series.

iRunFar: But you do it anyway.

Mityaev: Yeah, for me it’s not good.

iRunFar: Okay.

Mityaev: Next serious race TDS.

iRunFar: Okay.

Mityaev: Yeah, big focus.

iRunFar: Again on TDS.

Mityaev: Yeah. My preparing.

iRunFar: This year you’re sort of repeating races from last year.

Mityaev: Yeah. I like these races I repeat every year.

iRunFar: Well congratulations on your third-place finish and congratulations also to you Katya.

Katya Mityaev: Thank you. Thank you very much.

iRunFar: I hope you guys recover quickly.

Mityaev: Thank you so much.

Katya Mityaev: Thank you. Thank you very much.

Mityaev: Yeah, very sorry my very bad English.

iRunFar: Oh, come on. It’s super good. It’s super good.

Mityaev: Thank you so much.

iRunFar: Congrats again.

Mityaev: Thank you.

Meghan Hicks

is iRunFar.com's Managing Editor and the author of 'Where the Road Ends: A Guide to Trail Running.' The converted road runner finished her first trail ultramarathon in 2006 and loves using running to visit the world's wildest places.

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