2022 Hardrock 100 Preview

An in-depth preview of the 2022 Hardrock 100.

By on July 6, 2022 | Comments

Hardrock 100 logoFriday, July 15 will see the start of the 2022 Hardrock 100. The route alternates direction, and this year it will run clockwise, packing 33,000 feet of elevation through the San Juan Mountains of Colorado, starting and finishing in the mountain hamlet of Silverton.

There are a few key changes to the route this year, with the movement of three aid stations and the rerouting of a bit of the course, resulting in an additional 1.37 miles on last year’s route, and an additional 1.98 miles since the last clockwise event in 2018. The run looks to be 102.5 miles long this year.

Both the men’s and women’s fields are stacked, with most of the focus on the men’s side being on the two favorites, Kilian Jornet and François D’Haene, both previous champions. In the women’s field, despite a DNF last year, Courtney Dauwalter stands ready to take on the course again along with last year’s second place woman, Darcy Piceu. That said, there is plenty more talent in both fields, and as we all know, 100 miles is a long way and anything can happen!

The men’s clockwise course record stands at 22:41:33, and was set by Kilian Jornet back in 2014. Last year, François D’Haene set the counterclockwise and overall course record at 21:45:50. On the women’s side, Diana Finkel holds both the clockwise (28:32:00, set in 2010) as well as counterclockwise and overall (27:18:24, set in 2009) course records.

Ahead of the race, we’ll publish interviews with some of the race favorites and, of course, we’ll be covering the race live starting at 6 a.m. Mountain Daylight Time on Friday, July 15. Enjoy!

2022 Hardrock 100 Men’s Preview

This year, the talk of the men’s run is the showdown between current course-record holders, Kilian Jornet, the clockwise record holder, and François D’Haene, the counterclockwise record holder. But there’s plenty more talent in this stacked field. Read all about the top men below.

Top Men

Francois D'Haene - 2021 UTMB pre-race portrait

François D’Haene

In 2021, France’s François D’Haene (pre-race interview) set himself the ambitious target of running the Hardrock 100 and UTMB in the same season. D’Haene is not the most prolific racer generally and respects the 100-mile distance, so this was somewhat out of character. But he pulled it off epically, winning and setting a new course at Hardrock and going on to claim his fourth victory at UTMB. A 100-mile specialist, D’Haene’s lengthy CV also includes four wins at the 168-kilometer Diagonale des Fous, a win at the Ultra-Trail Mount Fuji in 2014, and second behind Jim Walmsley at the 2018 Western States 100. He’s started this year in winning ways, too, with a victory in the 118k race at the Volvic Volcanic Expérience in France.

Kilian Jornet (pre-race interview) has so far been undefeated at Hardrock, having won all four of his starts (2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017). He wasn’t on the start line for 2021 and held the counterclockwise course record prior to D’Haene’s win, so this is going to be a hell of a showdown! Jornet is hard to beat over any distance in the mountains. As well as his Hardrock wins, other high-profile 100-mile victories include the 2011 Western States 100 and UTMB, and the 2012 Diagonale des Fous. Over shorter distances, he holds the record for the hotly contested 30k Sierre-Zinal mountain race, and the Zegama Marathon, which he won this year in a record time of 3:36:40. At the 2017 UTMB, Jornet finished second to D’Haene by a 15-minute margin. The two ran much of the race together, waiting for each other at the earlier aid stations before D’Haene eventually pulled away. It’s likely we can expect a similar display from these two gentlemen of ultrarunning, and it remains to be seen who will have the legs to break away before the finish.

Dakota Jones - 2018 Ring of Steall Skyrace

Dakota Jones

Dakota Jones (pre-race interview) won the 50k race at this year’s Canyons by UTMB, and finished just outside of the top 10 in a savage field at the Zegama Marathon, placing 11th. A promising start to the year for the two-time Hardrock finisher, who placed third back in 2012. Jones does well in shorter races, but also placed second in the 2020 IMTUF 100 Mile and seventh in both the Lake Sonoma 50 Mile and the Black Canyon 100k in 2019.

Jeff Browning has buckets of form in 100-mile races. The five-time Hardrock finisher won the run in 2018 before winning the Bear 100 Mile and the Tarawera 100 Mile in 2019. He placed ninth in a speedy 15:55 at the Western States 100 in 2019 but failed to finish on return in 2021. More recently, he won the Scout Mountain 100 Mile in May. He was also second in the competitive Sean O’Brien 100k in February of 2022 at age 50 and won at least three 100 milers last year, as well as placing fifth in Hardrock. He’s definitely a serious contender for a podium spot.

Diagonale Des Fous 2021 - Daniel Jung

Daniel Jung

Italy’s Daniel Jung (pre-race interview) is having a cracking year. Already in 2022, he won the Gran Raid – GR70 64k in Italy, placed second in the 108k race at the Penyagolosa Trails in Spain, and third in the 48k Cortina Trail at Lavaredo Ultra Trail. He had some great results last year too, sharing the win in the 100-mile Diagonale des Fous with Ludovic Pommeret, and winning the 64k Garda Trentino Trail in Italy. His back catalog includes a fourth-place finish at the 2018 Transgrancanaria. He is definitely one to watch on his Hardrock debut.

Like Browning as another five-time Hardrock finisher, Nick Coury has good form coming into this year’s event. He was fourth in the 2021 Run Rabbit Run 100 Mile and third in the Black Canyon 100k, also in 2021, and placed second behind Tim Tollefson at the 2020 Javelina Jundred Mile. So far in 2022, he’s won the Copper Corridor 50k in Arizona and placed second at both the Leona Divide 50k and the Ram Party 50 Mile. After a very full-on year’s racing in 2021, which also included three 24-hour races culminating in running 173 miles to set the American record last December, the easier build-up with some shorter ultras might work in his favor going into Hardrock. His most recent Hardrock result was fifth in 2017, so let’s just see if he can improve on that.

John Kelly - Lake District - May 2021

John Kelly

John Kelly is a runner who is very comfortable with being uncomfortable and should feel right at home on this difficult course. In 2017, he was the winner and only finisher of the Barkley Marathons, completing all five loops with 30 minutes to spare. In 2020, he won the brutal 268-Mile Winter Spine Race in the U.K., setting a new men’s course record of 87 hours and 53 minutes. He also holds the supported FKT for the Pennine Way (the same route as the Spine Race, but the race permits little support and requires runners to carry a thru-hiker-style kit list) at 58 hours and four minutes. This year, he also set an FKT on the Wainwrights Round in the U.K., a route that traverses 214 peaks in England’s Lake District. Kelly has some form in more runnable trail races too, and placed eighth man, ninth overall, in the 2016 JFK 50 Mile and 10th in the 2018 Bandera 100k. All of these credentials said, the Hardrock 100 will be his first 100 miler.

More Men to Watch

  • Jamil Coury – 9th 2017 Hardrock 100
  • John Fitzgerald — 3rd 2019 Bear 100 Mile; 1st 2019 HURL Elkhorn 53 Mile
  • Jason Koop – 8th 2018 Leadville 100 Mile; 7th 2022 Cocodona 250 Mile
  • Jeason Murphy — 6th 2018 Hardrock 100
  • Luke Nelson — 1st 2021 Plain 100 Mile; 8th 2018 Tor des Géants 330k; Nolan’s 14 finisher
  • Mike Wolfe — 3rd 2021 River of No Return 108k; 2nd 2019 High Lonesome 100 Mile; 3rd 2018 Scout Mountain 100 Mile [Updated July 8]

Notable Withdrawals

  • Aurélien Dunand-Pallaz (France)

2022 Hardrock 100 Women’s Preview

This year sees the return of each of last year’s top-three women, as well as Courtney Dauwalter, who failed to finish Hardrock last year. Read about them, and the other women to watch out for below.

Top Women

Sabrina Stanley - 2021 Hardrock 100

Sabrina Stanley

Sabrina Stanley has decided to not race Hardrock. [Updated July 9]  Sabrina Stanley is the defending Hardrock 100 women’s champion. As well as having won the event twice — in 2021 and 2018 — she is local to the route and the Hardrock trails are her regular training ground, so she will have a distinct home advantage. As well as her wins at Hardrock, she’s also podiumed at Western States 100 (third in 2017) and the Hurt 100 Mile (third in 2018). Stanley has the speed over shorter ultras as well, having won the Quest for the Crest 50k in May of 2022 and in 2021, and placed fourth in 2021 at the uber-competitive 115k Madeira Island Ultra-Trail. Now, the only question that remains is whether Sabrina will run Hardrock, as she’s living in Europe ahead of UTMB and won the Scenic Trail 119k in Switzerland the last weekend in June.

Despite a DNF last year due to stomach issues, it’s still hard to argue against Courtney Dauwalter (pre-race interview) as the women’s favorite for the 2022 Hardrock 100. Since last year’s run, she’s added to her list of ultra achievements another victory at UTMB, breaking Rory Bosio’s 2013 course record. She also reset the course record at the 2022 Madeira Island Ultra-Trail. She declined a place at the start of Western States 100 recently in favor of focusing on this year’s Hardrock, and will likely go into the event very determined.

2021 Hardrock 100 - Darcy Piceu

Darcy Piceu

Darcy Piceu (pre-race interview) has eight Hardrock finishes to her name, and she’s never been further back than second. She’s won the event three times — in 2012, 2013, and 2014 — although her best time on the route was logged in 2015, when she finished in a time of 28:57 behind Anna Frost. Outside of Hardrock, other standout results in Piceu’s long career include third at UTMB in 2011, and wins at the Javelina Jundred Mile and the Hurt 100 Mile in 2018. At the 2021 Hardrock, she finished second once again behind Stanley, and it would be against the run of play for her not to do well here.

They don’t come much tougher than Maggie Guterl (pre-race interview)! Guterl’s standout results include an outright win at the 2019 Big Dog’s Backyard Ultra, where she racked up 250 miles over 60 hours; and a win at the 2021 Cocodona 250 Mile. She made it to the start line of the 2021 Barkley Marathons, on a year where no one made it to the finish line. Guterl was timed out by just 12 minutes at the end of loop 2.

2021 Hardrock 100 - Meghan Hicks

Meghan Hicks

Meghan Hicks has three Hardrock 100 finishes to her name and has moved further up the field with each attempt, culminating in a third-place finish last year, which was also her best time on the course at 33:04. She’s also a six-time Marathon des Sables finisher, winning the 250k desert stage race in 2013. More recently, she took third at the Scout Mountain Ultras 50 Mile in 2021 and fourth at the Bear 100 Mile in 2019. She is another runner who will benefit from home advantage, with Hardrock taking place on her doorstep and usual training ground.

In 2021, Stephanie Case (pre-race interview), a Canadian who lives in the Middle East, won the 450k Tor des Glaciers and placed third in the 162k Val d’Aran by UTMB. She’s also a three-time 330k Tor des Géants finisher, including a second-place finish in 2016 and, most recently, fourth in 2018.

Benefiting from a late stage wait-list entry, and back for a second run at Hardrock 100, is former Bear 100 Mile winner Hannah Green. Green placed seventh in the 2017 Hardrock, the same year as she won the Bear, and is likely capable of improving on that place. Other standout results include a third-place finish at the 2016 Wasatch Front 100 Mile Endurance Run, and a win at the 2015 San Juan Solstice 50 Mile. In spring of 2022, she backpacked the length of the Grand Canyon in Arizona, beginning at Lees Ferry and finishing at Pearce Ferry, and no doubt the time-on-feet training will stand to her.

More Women to Watch

  • Emily Halnon — 1st 2021 Siskiyou Out Back 50 Mile; 11th 2019 Cascade Crest 100 Mile
  • Angela Shartel — 8th 2020 IMTUF 100 Mile; 1st 2018 Mogollon Monster 100 Mile

Women with a Chance for Last Minute Entry

  • Becky Bates (Canada) – 2nd Women’s Else waitlist – 5th 2017 Hardrock 100; 10th 2021 Run Rabbit Run 100 Mile; 2nd 2022 Scout Mountain 50 Mile
  • Hannah Green – 1st Women’s Else waitlist – 2022 John Cappis 50k finish (1 of first 2 women to ever complete the event); 7th 2017 Hardrock 100; 1st 2017 Bear 100 Mile [Updated July 9]

Notable Withdrawals

  • Amanda Morgenstern

Call for Comments

  • Who do you think will be the first woman and first man to finish?
  • Who do you think will surprise everyone at this year’s Hardrock?
Sarah Brady

Sarah Brady is Managing Editor at iRunFar. She’s been working in an editorial capacity for ten years and has been a trail runner for almost as long. Aside from iRunFar, she’s worked as an editor for various educational publishers and written race previews for Apex Running, UK, and RAW Ultra, Ireland. Based in Belfast, Ireland, Sarah is an avid mountain runner and ultrarunner and competes at distances from under 10k to over 100k. When not running, she enjoys reading, socializing, and hanging out with her dog, Angie, and cat, Judy.