It would be hard to argue that Dave Mackey (Hoka One One, Injinji) hasn’t been the the top American trail 100k runner over the past decade. From Miwok to Waldo, he’s been the man. Last year, Mackey led a talented field for the first half of the UROC 100k before dropping out… but he’s back again this year. In the following interview, find out what he thinks have been the highlights of his 2012 race season, what happened to him at last year’s UROC, and why he’s psyched about Karl Meltzer’s and Mike Morton’s recent wins.
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Dave Mackey Pre-2012 UROC 100k Interview Transcript
iRunFar: Bryon Powell if iRunFar here with Dave Mackey before the 2012 UROC 100k. How are you doing, Dave?
Dave Mackey: I’m doing well, Bryon. How are you?
iRF: As usual, you’ve had a busy race season. What have been the highlights so far this year?
Mackey: I don’t know. It’s not as good a year compared to last year as far as race results. I had more wins last year. I dropped in this race last year, so I’m looking forward to doing better in that case tomorrow. Yeah, pretty good. My highlights—actually the whole experience—probably CCC. Just going over and racing overseas. I haven’t been over there in awhile. The course is totally different than anything I’ve ever experienced in the US, and the culture and the glamour and everything… Yeah, I didn’t have a great result, but I had an awesome time. I’m happy.
iRF: On the result side of things, you kind of showed by far probably your best 100 mile race, I think, at Western States this year. You kind of faded a bit at the end, but you put it out there. Does that give you more confidence racing a harder 100k?
Mackey: Well, not 100k-wise, but when I choose to do more 100’s, I’m definitely going to feel more confident. But that was definitely the perfect constellation of events that kind of lead to a good race with weather, and… mainly the weather, I guess, that was the huge thing. Yeah, it gives me more confidence for sure. I’m definitely going to do more 100’s in the future.
iRF: In terms of weather you mean because it wasn’t as hot?
Mackey: Yeah, exactly.
iRF: You don’t deal particularly well with the heat?
Mackey: No, historically I don’t. I’ve done okay at Western, but it needs to be cold for me to do well.
iRF: That time you were second … was it 2005 that you were second? 2004?
Mackey: 2004 with [Scott] Jurek.
iRF: Which was a pretty reasonable year temperature-wise.
Mackey: Yeah, reasonable. It was like 105F.
iRF: The good news is it will be reasonably cool—no warmer than on the Front Range — tomorrow here on race day. You were here last year and lead in the early miles; you probably went out a little aggressively. What happened?
Mackey: I’m not going to make any excuses as far as what led up to the race, but I ran out pretty hard. I felt comfortable with the level of effort, though, for the first half of the race. Then my immune system was fighting something, so I kind of cratered. It was myself and [Mike] Wardian was right behind me, and Geoff [Roes] and Matt Flaherty and… I just kind of imploded on myself at that point. I had a great time. I like the course. There’s nothing else like it anywhere that I know, even in the world, as far as this kind of course with the trail and road.
iRF: I would say if you have a best distance so far, historically it’s been the 100k. You have won pretty much all the 100k’s you’ve run. You’re good on the road; you’re good on the trail. It suits you pretty well.
Mackey: Yeah, we’ll see.
iRF: Max [King] and Sage [Canaday] have a ton of speed and trail experience. Karl Meltzer showed us at Run Rabbit Run just 2 weeks ago…
Mackey: Yeah, that was awesome. Yeah, exactly. The Master is still competitive.
iRF: That brings a big smile to your face.
Mackey: Yeah, it was inspiring to me. It was inspiring to a lot of people to see Karl win that. Then to see Mike Morton do his 24-hour thing, and that wasn’t just beating people in the US, that was in the world, so… It’s kind of inspiring. It gives more energy to me and probably a ton of other people, as well. I’m psyched to see that. We’ve got a few more years, us old guys.
iRF: Best of luck out there this weekend and in the years to come.