The 2024 Hardrock 100 is history! Check out our in-depth results article for the full race story, as well as our interviews with champions Courtney Dauwalter and Ludovic Pommeret.

Courtney Dauwalter Pre-2024 Hardrock 100 Interview

A video interview with Courtney Dauwalter before the 2024 Hardrock 100.

By on July 10, 2024 | Comments

Courtney Dauwalter returns to the 2024 Hardrock 100 as the two-time defending champion. This year, she’s coming in with fresh legs having not run the Western States 100 only three weeks before as she did last year. In the following interview, Courtney talks about how she hopes to push the right amount throughout the race to use everything she’s got, how she’s hoping to smooth out the lows of her prior Hardrock experiences, and if she’s thinking at all about time or splits on race day. Oh, and we play a few yard games, too.

For more on who’s racing, check out our in-depth 2024 Hardrock 100 preview and follow our live race coverage on race day.

Courtney Dauwalter Pre-2024 Hardrock 100 Interview Transcript

iRunFar: Meghan Hicks of iRunFar. I’m with Courtney Dauwalter. It’s a couple days before the 2024 Hardrock 100. What the hell are you wearing this shirt for?

Courtney Dauwalter: Wait, we’re twins.

iRunFar: We’re twins. [They are wearing matching watermelon pattern shirts.]

Dauwalter: Well, that’s a funny mistake.

iRunFar: That’s a great mistake. So we’ve done a zillion interviews with you before. We’ve stood in this backyard a zillion times. It’s time to shake things up.

Dauwalter: I’m into it.

iRunFar: So, we have a couple games in mind.

Dauwalter: [laughs] I love games.

iRunFar: How do you feel? So, in honor of Courtney Dauwalter’s Dauwaltermelon coming out full time on Tailwind, we really thought about how we could celebrate that. And a bunch of people got together, thought really hard about it. And what we came up with was watermelon bowling.

Dauwalter: Wait. Okay, I’m in.

iRunFar: So, we’re going to roll watermelons at bags of Dauwaltermelon.

Dauwalter: Perfect.

iRunFar: Okay. Off we go.

Dauwalter: I hope you’re good at bowling, because I feel like I might be.

iRunFar: I feel like, we’re from Minnesota. Bowling is approximately one of the 12 state sports of Minnesota.

Dauwalter: Yeah.

iRunFar: And I never got good at it.

Dauwalter: A major pastime, especially in those winter months.

iRunFar: So, since you are the expert of bowling, do you want to walk us through this?

Dauwalter: Yeah, well, I’ll just start.

iRunFar: Okay, great.

Dauwalter: Lift with your legs. [picks up watermelon]

iRunFar: Yeah, please don’t get injured. It’s the day before Hardrock. Do you want me to help you hold it?

Dauwalter: [laughs] And now we’re just going for strikes. Pure strikes.

iRunFar: I’ll be going for touching the bag.

Dauwalter: Pure strikes.

iRunFar: Pure strikes.

Dauwalter: [rolls watermelon to knock over one bag] Well, I got one.

iRunFar: Maggie [Guterl], what are you doing here? Okay, do I go, or do you go again?

Dauwalter: I get two, right?

iRunFar: Yeah, you get two.

Dauwalter: Oh, this one’s lighter for sure. [rolls watermelon]

iRunFar: Three!

Dauwalter: It was actually a good bowl.

iRunFar: Maggie Guterl, what are you doing here?

Maggie Guterl: I’m at the bowling alley and playing.

iRunFar: Are you going to roll the ball? [laughs] I’m not really sure about my actual skills to touch the bag. Did you one arm it?

Dauwalter: That one I did. It’s much lighter. I actually only used one finger.

iRunFar: [rolls watermelon] [laughs] Nice! So, this actually is also still an interview.

Dauwalter: What? No, no, no, no, no!

iRunFar: How are you feeling ahead of Hardrock this year?

Dauwalter: Good. I’m so excited to be here. I’ve heard the wildflowers are out in force, which you know I love.

iRunFar: You love yourself a good set of wildflowers.

Dauwalter: Yeah, it’s just cool to be back in Silverton. It’s, the mountains here are something else.

iRunFar: And how does it feel to not have 100 miles of Western States on your legs today, a couple of days before the race?

Dauwalter: Pretty neat. [laughs]

iRunFar: That’s neat.

Dauwalter: Yeah, I think I’ve blocked out what it actually felt like last summer to be showing up here. Like, what it physically felt like in those days before. But I feel really good. It’s been fun to just be in a training groove for the past couple months, and now be here, and see about a big day in San Juans.

iRunFar: A big day of, let me guess, eating snacks, hanging out with your friends, enjoying the wildflowers.

Dauwalter: Absolutely.

iRunFar: Bowling.

Dauwalter: And bowling.

iRunFar: [picks up watermelon] Did you do two hands? This is so heavy.

Dauwalter: I haven’t bowled with that one yet.

iRunFar: [Rolls watermelon and it bursts open]

Dauwalter: [laughs] Well, I feel like now it’s snack time.

iRunFar: That was going to be part of the after party. Oh. Rest in peace, little watermelon. Thank you for your service.

Dauwalter: Wow, look how it broke though.

iRunFar: Okay, that’s fun. Would you like to play another game? [laughs]

Dauwalter: Yes.

iRunFar: We broke this one. Maggie, what are you doing here?

Dauwalter: Oh my gosh.

iRunFar: I’m all sticky now.

Dauwalter: That was crazy. That was unexpected.

iRunFar: It was really unexpected. The quality of the bowling balls in this alley are really something.

Dauwalter: Yeah.

iRunFar: I’m sorry, my hands are all sticky.

Dauwalter: [removes limes from a bag] So, we’re just throwing limes at bags now?

iRunFar: So, I think this is like, we both grew up in Minnesota. This is like Minnesota State Fair type situation.

Dauwalter: Yep. What’s the prize?

iRunFar: Uh, this interview. Hello.

Dauwalter: Are you going underhand or overhand?

iRunFar: I thought you said you were going to do like the famous Dauwalter.

Dauwalter: [throwing limes, not knocking over bags]

iRunFar: Yeah! Courtney, it was two! Did you play softball?

Dauwalter: [laughs] Wait, now I’m hooked. Now I just really want to get him down.

iRunFar: I really, I’ve never seen somebody do two.

Dauwalter: No, I didn’t play softball. I was just trying something. [laughs] Overhand.

iRunFar: I recommend you stick with ultrarunning.

Dauwalter: Wait, you try.

iRunFar: Yeah!

Dauwalter: [laughs]

iRunFar: [laughs] Our camera person is literally dying in the background right now.

Dauwalter: This is a whole new category of content for iRunFar. [They each knock over a bag with a lime.]

iRunFar: Oh!

Dauwalter: First try! But now a sideways bag.

iRunFar: Now a sideways bag. Oh, wait! But wait! Maggie is here to fix our bags of Dauwaltermelon. Too close! Foul! Too close! Also, what is that style?

Dauwalter: [laughs] Just, just trying things.

iRunFar: Need to do a little lime pickup here. There’s a lot of limes back there. So, Courtney. You’ve been at this race three times.

Dauwalter: Wow.

iRunFar: Two finishes. Two wins. A course record twice. I mean, you set the course record one time, and then you brought it down again last year. What makes a woman like you come back to an event like this after doing what you already have at this event? I mean, besides this experience.

Dauwalter: Yeah, this is, I mean, this is top of the list now for experiences at Hardrock.

iRunFar: Okay, great.

Dauwalter: Thank you. Well, it’s a really cool course. It’s really hard, and I think it’s hard to nail. So I am back because all of my runs here have had, like, just really significant chunks of time that were spent in very low places. So, I’m hoping, I would love to try to smooth out those lows just a little bit, and see if I can, yeah, get around that course without having so many huge hours.

iRunFar: I think we’re starting off on the right track with what’s happening right now.

Dauwalter: Yeah, I feel really good about this. Vibes are great already.

iRunFar: Vibes are great.

Dauwalter: Could be a new race outfit.

iRunFar: I mean, I’m just saying, Salomon, Tailwind. Other people that are not you, have been throwing around numbers of potential finishing times of a fresh Courtney Dauwalter, who’s seen this course, is familiar with it, and doesn’t have a hundred miles of Western States in her legs. I know your husband is the spreadsheet man, but have you, like, thought at all about that? Are you just going to put your head down, eat your snacks, and go to your happy place?

Dauwalter: Yeah, I do better if I don’t have any attachment to numbers during. So, I’m just going to go by effort, and be trying to push as hard as I can without going over the edge too early. And yeah, I mean, it’s a hundred miles. It’s huge mountains. It’s altitude. So, adventure is guaranteed for sure. But I’m hoping to get around the loop and get back to that rock.

iRunFar: Swiftly. Expediently. You have a really great shirt.

Dauwalter: Yeah.

iRunFar: Let’s play.

Dauwalter: Deal. [They continue throwing limes.]

iRunFar: Oh, oh, bam. Oh, bam.

Dauwalter: Don’t walk away like that. That’s what I did, like, 47 times.

iRunFar: This is the microphone which came off because I threw it so hard. Courtney!

Dauwalter: Wait, now I’m dialed.

iRunFar: Hold on. You know how to do the game.

Dauwalter: Now I’m hooked.

iRunFar: Oh. Oh.

Dauwalter: That’s it!

iRunFar: That’s it! Cut! [high five]

Meghan Hicks

Meghan Hicks is the Editor-in-Chief of iRunFar. She’s been running since she was 13 years old, and writing and editing about the sport for around 15 years. She served as iRunFar’s Managing Editor from 2013 through mid-2023, when she stepped into the role of Editor-in-Chief. Aside from iRunFar, Meghan has worked in communications and education in several of America’s national parks, was a contributing editor for Trail Runner magazine, and served as a columnist at Marathon & Beyond. She’s the co-author of Where the Road Ends: A Guide to Trail Running with Bryon Powell. She won the 2013 Marathon des Sables, finished on the podium of the Hardrock 100 Mile in 2021, and has previously set fastest known times on the Nolan’s 14 mountain running route in 2016 and 2020. Based part-time in Moab, Utah and Silverton, Colorado, Meghan also enjoys reading, biking, backpacking, and watching sunsets.