After a year’s hiatus, we’re excited to welcome back our This Week in Running column, where we round up a week of trail and ultra racing news from around the world! Today, we’re traveling to New Zealand and onto Spain before stopping into Oregon and Illinois. We’re covering such runners as Joe “Stringbean” McConaughy and his new fastest known time on the Arizona Trail and Ruth Croft running a super fast 10k on the roads in New Zealand.
[Editor’s Note: As you return to racing, we hope you’ll research and follow regulations and recommendations in your running-related travel. Here’s our science-based article on how to lower COVID-19 risks as you travel and race.]
Ultra Montseny — Barcelona, Spain
The 76-kilometer (47-mile) Ultra Montseny happened in the Montseny Natural Park, just west of Barcelona. The race gained 4,374 meters (14,350 feet) across five big climbs. The event also had 44k and 22k races.
Pere Aurell (Spain) won the 76k men’s race in 8:09, while Jordi Gamito (Spain) and Victor Del Aguila (Spain) were second and third in 8:17 and 8:26. The 44k saw victory in 4:33 for Spanish speedster David Palacios.
Ragna Debats (Netherlands, lives in Spain) won the women’s 76k in 9:46. This means wife-and-husband duo Debats and Aurell swept the long event. Feliciana Orquiola (Spain) and Marta Muixí (Spain) had the podium positions for the women in 10:16 and 10:28, respectively. In the 44k, Angels Llobera won in 5:28.
Peterson Ridge Rumble — Sisters, Oregon
The 19th Peterson Ridge Rumble included 36- and 20-mile races, not far from Bend, Oregon.
Brett Hornig went 3:55 for the win in the 36-mile event. Jeff Stern and Scott Williams were close together for second and third in 4:01 and 4:02, respectively. Colton Gale won the 20-mile contest in 2:06.
Keely Henninger dominated the women’s 36-mile run, finishing in 4:13. Watch our interview with Keely after that win. Natalie Chirgwin was the second woman in 4:26 and Leah Brown was third in 4:55. Dani Moreno won the 20-mile race in 2:14.
Patagonia Run — San Martín de los Andes, Patagonia Argentina
The Patagonia Run, made up of six races between 10k and 100 miles long, was contested with an all-Argentinian field this year, courtesy of the pandemic. Sergio Pereyra was the runaway men’s victor in the 100-mile race. His 21:30 was almost a half hour better than the rest of the field. The women’s race was tight, however, with two well known Argentinian ultrarunners vying for the win. In the end, Adriana Vargas edged Tania Diaz by four minutes to win in 26:26. Hugo Rodriguez in 3:50 and Roxana Flores in 4:28 were the winners of the marathon, which together with the 100 miler, are the distances pointing toward the inaugural Spartan Trail World Championships in the Trail Ultra and Trail Run categories, respectively. Full results.
Beyond Limits Ultra — Mountain Center, California
The quirky, weekend-long festival included races from 50k up to 72 hours, all over a two-mile loop. Ed Ettinghausen totaled 112 laps, or 224 miles, at the front of the 72-hour men’s contest. Stephanie Barnes won for the women with 101 laps, 202 miles. In the 48-hour race men’s race, Daniel Geary emerged with the win in 116 miles, while Susan Kokesh totaled 132 miles for the women. Ruperto Romero and Jian Springer went the distance in the 24-hour race with 128 and 112 miles, respectively. Full results.
Rattler Trail Race — Colorado Springs, Colorado
Potawatomi Trail Races — Pekin, Illinois
The 22nd Potawatomi Trail Races happened over muddy 10-mile loops in Illinois’s John T. McNaughton Park. Race distances ranged from 10 miles up to 200 miles. Official results aren’t yet available, but social-media reports share that Aneta Zeppettella finished the 200-mile race in 70:37, Greg Trapp won the 150-mile race, and Ben Kerezman topped the 100-mile field in 22:40. Leave a comment to share more results! Full results (when available).
Additional Trail Races, Ultramarathons, and Runs
Joe McConaughy’s Arizona Trail FKT
Joe McConaughy set a new men’s supported fastest known time for the 800-ish-mile Arizona Trail from Mexico to Utah. He finished in 13 days, 3 hours, and 21 minutes, and recounted the adventure for iRunFar. McConaughy also holds or has previously held records on the Long Trail, Appalachian Trail, and Pacific Crest Trail.
Zion Ultras 100 Mile
Jeff Browning won Utah’s Zion Ultras 100 Mile men’s race in 17:44. That’s Browning’s 23rd 100-mile win. In the women’s race, Gwendolyn Rudy took home the win in 26:15. The large event held four other distances. Full results.
Ozark Foothills 100 Mile
Shane Nelson and Emily Larson won Missouri’s Ozark Foothills 100 Mile race in 21:29 and 25:45, respectively. Randy Taylor and Rosa Moriello won the accompanying 50-mile race in 8:18 and 9:46. Full results.
Rattling Creek Trail Run 50k
The first-ever Rattling Creek Trail Run 50k in Pennsylvania championed Stefano Ruzza and Justyna Wilson as its winners in 4:10 and 5:00, respectively. Full results.
Singletrack Maniac 50k
Nick Cruz and Cristina Bertone won the Williamsburg, Virginia Singletrack Maniac 50k in 3:59 and 4:53. Cruz dipped under the four-hour mark by 46 seconds. Full results.
Endurance Hunter 100 Mile
Georgia’s Endurance Hunter 100 Mile was also a first-year event, and Jordan Stokes and Johanna Ylanen hit a bullseye with victorious 23:34 and 24:10 finishes. Full results.
Trail and Ultrarunners on the Roads
Any surface, any distance, kind of. When trail runners and ultrarunners race on the roads or on shorter distances, we still like to cover it.
- Seth Demoor, the 2020 Pikes Peak Marathon champion and a popular YouTuber, raced Florida’s 10k Run for Music. Demoor ran 30:46 and won by just over three minutes. He’s targeting a fast time at Ohio’s Glass City Half Marathon in two weeks. Full results.
- Ondrej Fejfar (Czech Republic), the 2018 Pikes Peak Ascent runner-up, competed at the Czech national half marathon championship at the Pardubický Vinařský Půlmaraton. Fejfar finished third in 1:07:38. Full results (when available).
- Both Francesco Puppi (Italy) and Gerda Steyn (South Africa) raced Italy’s Tuscany Camp Global Elite Race marathon. Puppi was 42nd in 2:16, and Steyn, the 2019 Comrades Marathon winner, was eighth in 2:25. Full results.
- Two months after winning the Tarawera Ultras 102k, Ruth Croft (New Zealand) won her country’s Christchurch Marathon 10k. Croft won in 32:44, a new race record. It looks like she’s targeting a road marathon in the near future. Full results.
COVID-19 Race Date Changes
- The Spartan Trail San Luis Obispo, California event was pushed back to November 2021.
- The spring classic Lake Sonoma 50 Mile race in California was to be this past weekend, but now is scheduled for September 2021.
- The Yamacraw Trail Runs in Kentucky pushed back one month, to May.
- Virginia’s Bull Run Run 50 Mile event was postponed toward an anticipated fall 2021 date.
Next Week and Weekend
- We’re on standby for Des Linden‘s planned 50k world record attempt. The 2018 Boston Marathon champ is expected to contest the distance this week, in Oregon, on a 6.5-mile out-and-back course. Aly Dixon (U.K.) holds the current world record at 3:07, and set the mark at the 2019 50k World Championships.
- The 2021 Skyrunner World Series looks to get underway next weekend at Japan’s Mt. Awa Skyrace. Entry appears open to runners living in Japan, and other invited racers.
Call for Comments
Help us get our groove back! Leave a comment to share details if you were at one of the races we covered, or to add results from a race we didn’t.
[Author’s Note: I had so much fun over the past year with the Catching Up With column! Thanks to everyone who chatted with me so openly. I really enjoyed the wide-ranging life stories. We talked about themes as diverse as life on a Caribbean island, business start-ups, and sex—all the good things, and the bad things that may be. I hope you all enjoyed that year-long stretch too.]