While there was plenty of great competition, it should surprise no one that Jonas Buud won the 2016 Tarawera Ultramarathon. He hung with David Byrne in the lead for the first 60 kilometers before putting on a clinic over the last 40k to win by more than 20 minutes. In the following interview, Jonas talks about how he won Tarawera, how runner-up David Byrne looked out there, and where you’ll see him racing next.
To find out how the race played out, read our Tarawera results article.
Jonas Buud, 2016 Tarawera Ultramarathon Champion, Interview Transcript
iRunFar: Bryon Powell of iRunFar here with Jonas Buud after his win at the 2016 Tarawera Ultramarathon. Congratulations, Jonas.
Jonas Buud: Thank you.
iRunFar: It looked like a classic Jonas Buud textbook victory from start to finish. You were with the leaders at the start. You were in the lead or with the lead until 60k. You took off when you hit the road. Did it feel as perfect as it looked?
Buud: Yes, it did. The first 60k, I was in the lead but not in the front. So I just pulled over, and yes, the pace was just as perfect as it could be. I was just waiting until the road should come. This is the best part for me. I increased the speed, and it turned out perfect.
iRunFar: Was it instant that you pulled away from David [Byrne]?
Buud: No, it was near Tarawera Forts. That’s the part it’s a little bit better and a little bit easier to run. I started to get a little bit bigger gap.
iRunFar: Did you make a real move, like, I’m going to break him and get a gap, or did you just go to your ’40k to go’ pace?
Buud: No, I just continued running my own pace. Others may have slowed down a little bit, but I don’t know.
iRunFar: Obviously you knew some of the other runners in the race like Ryan Sandes and Michael Wardian. Did you know much about David Byrne before the race?
Buud: No, I didn’t. I had to ask him after 55k if he was going to run the 100k or 80k or what his distance would be.
iRunFar: Did that give you confidence a little bit?
Buud: No, he told me he was going for 100k. Okay, maybe I must start to compete against him also.
iRunFar: Did he seem very smooth, easy for that first 60k?
Buud: Yeah, he ran just perfectly. He was running perfectly in the flats and a little slow in the uphills, so that was just perfect for me.
iRunFar: It was a good match. Your skill sets were…
Buud: Yeah, really, really good.
iRunFar: Do you think if he had a little more experience with longer races he could have hung in there with you longer?
Buud: Yeah, maybe. We’ll see.
iRunFar: So you felt good all day?
Buud: Yeah, maybe the last hour… it rained for the first half, I think, and then it stopped raining and then the last hour the sun came, and it was really, really hot.
iRunFar: You’re maybe glad it wasn’t like today yesterday? It would have been pretty hot?
iRunFar: What’s next on your radar? When’s your next race?
Buud: I will do Transgrancanaria in about four weeks. I’ll go home and maybe do some hill running and hopefully be a little bit prepared for Transgrancanaria.
iRunFar: Yeah, it’s kind of hard having seen where you live. I can’t imagine you can do too much vertical training at this point.
Buud: We’ll see what happens.
iRunFar: Will you go down with Zandra and the kids?
Buud: Yes, will be a kind of vacation also.
iRunFar: A little vacation… but this was an early season race to start off the season, and you won this. Do you expect another good result at Transgrancanaria?
Buud: No, this race is not one of my main goals; it will be Comrades later on. Transgrancanaria is more just for fun and to get some experience with the hill running.
iRunFar: Congratulations on your win, Jonas. See you in Spain in four weeks.