This Week In Running: August 20, 2018

This Week in Running Justin Mock TWIRIt was a Colorado-heavy weekend of racing, and Matt Carpenter course records loomed over much of it. In the Rocky Mountain state, we’ll cover the Pikes Peak Ascent and Marathon, the Leadville Trail 100 Mile Run, and the TransRockies Run. Elsewhere, we’ll look at the Squamish 50 Mile and a bunch more in this week’s column.

Pikes Peak Ascent – Manitou Springs, Colorado

The Pikes Peak Ascent typically climbs 7,815 feet over 13.3 miles to the top of the 14,115-foot peak. Not this year. The threat of late morning severe weather due to a front moving through the state of Colorado forced a big course change, and the race finish was pushed down mountain to 10,200-foot Barr Camp. For perspective, treeline is another 2.6 miles, and 1,750 feet, up the trail. It’s the first time in the race’s long history that this has happened.


Long or short course, it likely didn’t matter in the women’s race. Course-record holder Kim Dobson won for the sixth time, dominating this year’s 7.6-mile run in 1:15. She was almost six minutes ahead of her closest competition.

Tess Amer and Lauren Ayers were second and third in 1:21 and 1:25, respectively.


Colorado Springs-based Eritrean Azerya Weldermariam won the men’s race in 1:06, despite not realizing that the race had been shortened. Weldermariam was second in the race in 2014, and ran 2:31 for sixth last year while coming through Barr Camp, this year’s finish, 16 seconds faster.

Ondrej Fejfar (Czech Republic) and Alex Pilcher (U.K.) were second and third in 1:08 and 1:09, respectively.

Other notable results include:

  • Galen Burrell – 4th, 1:09
  • Andy Wacker – 5th, 1:10
  • Simon Gutierrez – 13th, 1:14
  • Alex Nichols – 21st, 1:16

Full results.

The start of the 2018 Pikes Peak Ascent. Photo: Peter ‘The Prez’ Maksimow, ATRA

Pikes Peak Marathon – Manitou Springs, Colorado

A day later, the threat of inclement weather had passed and the Pikes Peak Marathon was able to run its full course. The race went the standard 26.2 miles, up and down the mountain, turning around at the summit. The race was part of the Golden Trail Series.


When we think about Pikes Peak, we slant to Matt Carpenter and tend to forget that the women’s races also have some lofty, and longstanding, course records. Lynn Bjorklund’s 4:15:18 marathon course record had stood since 1981. Megan Kimmel put together a magical day though and clipped 14 seconds from that mark. Kimmel finished in 4:15:04, thanks to a first-to-the-top 2:42 followed by a 1:33 downhill.

Megan Kimmel resetting a 37-year-old course record at the 2018 Pikes Peak Marathon. Photo: Peter ‘The Prez’ Maksimow, ATRA

Laura Orguè (Spain) was second in 4:30 and defending champion Kristina Mascarenas was third in 4:37. Just like last year, Mascarenas again had the fastest downhill, splitting 1:28, and like Jones, it too was the fastest downhill ever.

Other notable results included:

  • Celine Lafaye (France) – 5th, 4:51
  • Anne-Marie Madden (Canada) – 6th, 4:52
  • Anita Ortiz – 8th, 5:19

It should be noted that Ortiz doubled up, running the Ascent the day before finishing eighth in the Marathon.


Dakota Jones reached the summit second, in 2:18, and then got to work. He sprinted the 13 miles downhill in 1:13, almost three minutes better than anyone else, and won the race in 3:32. And this was after Jones spent the previous week biking 250 miles from Durango, Colorado to the race start. Jones’s 3:32 finish is the race’s fastest since Ricardo Mejia’s 3:30 in 1997, and Jones’s 1:13 downhill split bettered Matt Carpenter’s 1:15 downhill course record from 1993.

Carpenter’s overall course record still stands at 3:16, a mark that remains completely out of reach. That time came in 1993 thanks to a 2:01 ascent and a 1:15 descent.

Oriol Cardona (Spain) was second in 3:37, and local runner Darren Thomas was third, also in 3:37 but 15 seconds back. Thomas had the weekend’s fastest ascent, reaching the summit in 2:17.

Other notable results:

  • Stian Angermund-Vik (Norway) – 4th, 3:37
  • David Sinclair – 5th, 3:38
  • Sage Canaday – 6th, 3:46
  • Karl Egloff (Ecuador) – 7th, 3:48
  • Brian Condon – 8th, 3:55
  • Paddy O’Leary – 13th, 4:13:18
  • Max King – 15th, 4:37

The second through fifth men were just 50 seconds apart, part of a record five sub-3:40 finishes.  It does however look to have been a rough welcome to altitude for Max King.

Full results.

The next Golden Trail Series race is the September 15 Ring of Steall Skyrace in the U.K.

Leadville Trail 100 Mile – Leadville, Colorado

Affectionately known as “the race across the sky,” the 10,000-foot high Leadville Trail Run 100 Mile had some 713 entrants.


Katie Arnold and Addie Bracy were side by side at mile 60, but Arnold blew things open in the race’s final 40 miles. Arnold finished in 19:53.

Bracy, racing 100 miles for the first time, felt typical debut 100-mile problems late in the race, but finished a strong second in 21:17. Gina Slaby’s in the Navy, a far cry from high-altitude Leadville. Still, she was third in 23:13.


A week after biking 7:08 to finish 14th in the Leadville 100 Mile mountain-bike race, Rob Krar was back and crushed the field in 15:51. It was the race’s second-fastest finish ever, only nine minutes back of Matt Carpenter’s 2005 record. It was Krar’s first 100-mile race since 2015, and was his second in Leadville. He won the race’s 2014 edition in 16:09.

In case you missed it, Krar had quietly piled up 50k wins earlier this year at the Bryce Canyon Ultras, the Stumptown Trail Runs, Quiksilver, and Cedro Peak.

Ryan Kaiser and Seth Kelly were second and third in 17:37 and 18:15, respectively.

Three-time defending champion Ian Sharman did not start the race due to injury.

Dave Mackey finished his incredible Leadman campaign with a 24:54 finish.

Full results.

Rob Krar and Katie Arnold, 2018 Leadville Trail 100 Mile champions. Photo: Leadville Race Series

TransRockies Run – Buena Vista, Colorado

The TransRockies Run stage race happens over six days and 120 miles on a point-to-point run through the Colorado Rockies. The race has multiple divisions, and we’ll cover the big ones.


Twin sisters Lina and Sanna El Kott (Sweden)won the two-person, six-day race in 17:48. Hillary Allen and Lucy Bartholomew (Australia) were second in 18:26. Tessa Chesser won the solo, six-day race in 21:04. And in the solo, three-day race, Amanda Basham won in a collective 8:59.

Sanna (right) and Lina El Kott on their way to winning the 2018 TransRockies Run women’s six-day team race. Photo: TransRockies Run


Men’s six-day team winners were Shawn Lywood and Mike Tucker in 19:25. Cody Reed took the men’s solo, six-day win in 16:37, and Owen Bradley won the solo, three-day race in 8:40.

Full results.

Cody Reed, 2018 TransRockies Run men’s solo six-day champion. Photo: TransRockies Run

Squamish 50 Mile and 50k – Squamish, British Columbia


It’s 2018, and Courtney Dauwalter can’t miss. She won the Squamish 50 Mile women’s race in 8:22. Let’s tally her 2018 results. First at the Western States 100, first at Ultra-Trail Mt. Fuji, first at the Behind the Rocks 50 Mile, second at the Black Canyon 100k, first at the Sean O’Brien 100k, and first at the Coldwater Rumble 52 Miler. Dang!

Darbykai Standrick was second in 8:45, and Kat Drew was third in 9:03.

The day earlier’s 50k was won by Catrin Jones in 5:53.

Adrienne Dunbar won the two-day, two-race weekend double in 17:29.


Karl Augsten led three men under the 8-hour mark, winning the 50-mile race in 7:40. Mike Sidic and Mike McMillan followed in 7:49 and 7:55.

Etienne Robert won a close one in the 50k, running 5:18 to edge Xavier Bouchard‘s 5:20.

Colin Miller had the fastest 50k + 50 mile double in 14:16.

Full results.

Ultravasan 90k – Sälen, Sweden

Six years in and the Ultravasan 90k had a huge field, 1,042 starters.


Weather was favorable and Alexandra Morozova (Russia) ripped a new course record, 6:43. It was seven minutes better than Ida Nilsson (Sweden) ran a year ago. Nilsson, battling a stomach bug for much of the week, was second in 7:06. Sarah Bard (USA) ran 7:27 for third.


Fritjof Fagerlund (Finland) bested Pat Reagan (USA) and Didrik Hermansen (Norway) to win the men’s race, finishing in 6:01. It was the race’s second-fastest time to date. Reagan and Hermansen followed in 6:10 and 6:15.

Full results.

Alexandra Morozova and Fritjof Fagerlund, 2018 Ultravasan champions. Photo: Vasaloppet

Other Races and Runs

Kodiak 100 Mile

Daniela Seyler and Elan Lieber won the sixth annual Kodiak 100 Mile in California thanks to 24:11 and 22:02 runs. Full results.

Waldo 100k

In Oregon, Rachel Drake and Duncan Hoge won the Waldo 100k with 11:42 and 10:15 finish times. The women’s race was particularly close at the end with second-place Amy Streeter coming in a little over 3 minutes back of Drake. Full results.

Great Cranberry Island 100 Mile

Clear to Maine for the free Great Cranberry Island 100 Mile. Winners Rebeccah Geib and Michael Wardian finished the back-and-forth run in 28:02 and 15:29, respectively.

Twisted Branch Trail Run

The fourth running of the 100k Twisted Branch Trail Run went point-to-point through upstate New York’s Finger Lakes region. Heavy rains battered the sold-out field early. Emeline Lagache and Jim Sweeney were victorious in 14:03 and 10:12. It was Sweeney’s second straight win, and a new course record. Full results.

Appalachian Trail Supported FKT

Going north on the Appalachian Trail, Karel Sabbé (Belgium) is in New Hampshire and is tracking two to three days ahead of Joe McConaughy‘s 45 day, 12 hour unsupported Appalachian Trail FKT. If continuing to be successful, Sabbé would stand to break the supported FKT, while McConaughy would continue to hold the unsupported FKT. Sabbé would also of course break Scott Jurek’s northbound supported FKT, and Karl Meltzer‘s overall supported FKT, which he set going southbound. Confusing? We hope not. Additional commentary.

Call for Comments

  • Bigger fields and more races, is that the combination leading to more and more races changing course because of weather? Is there a solution to be had here?
  • What else happened this weekend? Tell us about other races in the comments field below.
Justin Mock

is a family man, finance man, and former competitive runner. He gave his 20s to running, and ran as fast as 2:29 for the marathon and finished as high as fourth at the Pikes Peak Marathon. His running is now most happy with his two dogs on the trails and peaks near his home west of Denver.

There are 26 comments

  1. Lee S

    Wasn’t the Leadville 100 course lengthened by ~2 miles after Carpenter set his record. Krar only missed by 9 minutes. Seems within the margin of extra distance to me.

    1. Evan K

      Leadville Website: “Based on GPS data from several sources, the course we used in 2016 was approximately 98.5 miles. The course we will use in 2017 (and the foreseeable future) is slightly longer in each direction, but gets the overall course length to 100.4 miles.”

      Question: When Carpenter set the CR in ’05, were they running the same course used in 2016 (the 98.5 mile route?) I

      IF so, it means a +1.9 mile addition this year which added 18 minutes to Krar’s finish time (if you subtract his overall pace to the old course distance he would’ve finished in approx 15:34).

      Whatever the case, it was awesome to see Krar roaring back into the scene…..he came floating through Winfield at 7:34 split and he looked like he just got out of his car to start the race. Fresh as a daisy.

      1. Markus

        The Leadville course was slightly changed in 2008 I believe after that Helicopter crash near Mt Massive.
        Carpenters run was before that.

        No idea if the course was changed again.

        I had never the impression that Ken Chobler cared about the correct distance.

  2. Emerson Thoreau

    “Carpenter’s overall course record still stands at 3:16, a mark that remains completely out of reach.” Not so sure about this statement.

    1. Justin Mock

      It’s often debated which is the tougher Carpenter CR, the Pikes Peak Marathon or the Leadville 100. I’m firmly on the PPM side. Although Dakota Jones ran down Pikes Peak faster than Matt Carpenter, he was farther away – both in minutes and much more so in % – from Carpenter’s CR than what Rob Krar was at the Leadville 100. Jones was 16 minutes back of the PPM CR, in a 26-mile race. And that’s despite Jones running faster than anyone has since 1997.

      The record is 3:16, and no one has run under 3:30 since 1996, and there is only a single sub-3:20 run ever.

      1. Sam

        Hate to be that guy, but, I wonder what walmsley could do….

        And Krars run at Leadville was so damn impressive. I wonder if he will still run at CCC?

    2. Scott

      I agree w/ Justin that for now, Carpenter’s overall PPM record remains out of reach. There is no evidence to suggest that it will be broken anytime soon. I suppose the Walmsley hypothetical is interesting. I believe Dakota ran 1:37 at Kendall Mountain this year, while Walmsley ran 1:31 last year? (I’m not 100% sure on those numbers) So, maybe on paper Walmsley could throw down a fast time…but who knows what would happen on race day!

      But what an amazing weekend of racing! In addition to the CRs by Kimmel and Dakota that were mentioned, consider that 8 guys broke 4:00 hours in the marathon! I’m not sure that’s ever happened – and you have to go back to 1995 for the last time 5 guys broke 4:00! I believe only 6 guys had ever run faster than 1:20 on the descent, and yesterday there were 4?!?! Amazing! And only three guys have ever run faster than Dakota on the current course! (Carpenter, Mejia, and Waquie).

      A low point was Salomon’s supposed “live” coverage of the marathon. I understand technical difficulties, but after a week of hyping their live coverage, including getting many athletes to do so, I don’t understand why they couldn’t post *any* updates on FB, Instagram or YouTube during the race. Lame. Also puzzling why some of their athletes didn’t run, even though they were featured in race promotion.

    3. Buzz

      Matt’s 3:16 PPM is one of the top endurance marks in history, in any sport. The best runners in the world speak of it with reverence while shaking their heads.

  3. Mike

    The only person who has a shot at the Ascent or Marathon record is Kilian…if he’s truly motivated for it. I don’t think he could get the ascent time, but I think he could take the PPM on the downhill. I thought he would break the PPM record when he ran it in 2012, but I don’t think he had the high motivation that it would take to get that record. Maybe the trail is not technical enough to give him the focus needed to pursue this record, but in any event, it speaks to the prowess of this record if he’s the only one who *might* approach it, and even then it would take an inspired downhill.

    1. Frederic Bard

      I agree 100% on the “if he’s truly motivated”. That has been mentioned multiple times about Kilian not giving it all when racing. And I can understand when there is no need for it (UTMB 2011 when he ran with Chaigneau, Karrera and Heras and just had to accelerate a tiny bit at the end to win. Why go faster and risk injury or use energy that can be kept in the tank ? And it happened again at Mt Marathon (2015), multiple HardRock wins where he was literally waiting for people…..etc, etc, etc…
      The issue is that we never really know his true potential. We know he is strong and fast but how strong and fast ?
      I don’t see him ever trying to get the record, let alone run the race again unless forced by his sponsor as he declared in 2012 : “The race was really hard because it’s flat” (source :

  4. 18342772

    At this point, it feels like someone needs to convince Nike there are a lot of shoes to be sold by #Breaking3:16, and throwing a few 2:05 guys at the problem.

    Leadville, I think, just needs a real race. (Granted, Carpenter didn’t have one, on his day.) Ian Sharman posted, after the race, that he regretted not being there to give Krar a push, and it’s hard not to agree. Maybe next year?

  5. Chris

    PPM was Matt’s main focus for most of his brilliant career, and is in his back yard for daily training. Leadville was a [relatively] short detour from that focus. I believe several folks could take down the Leadville record if so inclined, but the PPM is much harder. Partly because of the altitude. Where else can you get a smooth runnable 14er 5 minutes from downtown?

  6. Rick

    Just a question if anybody knows but Pikes peak marathon was at one time a Littel longer than 26.2 to finish in town close to 27 or it was in 94 are the still running exactly the same course and distance?

    1. Mojo Jojo

      I cried a little when Katie ran into Outward Bound Aid Station with the biggest smile on her face! She was definitely the strongest runner I saw, nevertheless, consistent throughout the race. Also, go Midd!!!

  7. Sean

    I wouldn’t necessarily call PPM a “rough welcome to altitude for Max King”, rather, a “rough welcome-back to altitude: might be more appropriate. In addition to running TransRockies numerous times, he ran PPM the year that Kilian did (2012), finishing in a solid 3:50 for 3rd place, with the fastest downhill split that day of 1:20. Looking at his splits this year, particularly the downhill where he usually crushes it, it looks like he might have been dealing with some issues other than just altitude. One of the things I really respect about Max is that he doesn’t offer excuses.

  8. Gary Gellin

    Great to see Dakota on top again. I was just trying to think who else besides Dakota has broken a stout Matt Carpenter CR (two now, with Pikes Peak Descent and San Juan Solstice 50 mile) and beaten Kilian (Transvulcania).

  9. Brody

    So I ran PPM this year for the first time with these guys (a whopping 5:25) and I feel like our commentary about Matt Carpenter’s record and Dakota’s decent is missing a major point — you guys, a 1:13 descent on this course is insanely fast. Insanely fast. I didn’t understand until Dakota flew by me (probably around 12,500 ft me on my way up him headed down) and I watched him run the next few switch backs below me. A solid 30% of this course is not “runnable” but wicked, pick every foot placement, technical. How more of these guys don’t wipe out when pushing that hard is beyond me. This is all just to say, these guys are going way beyond elite level fitness/speed and are at a genius-level descent skill that I think few of us “normal” trail runners can wrap our heads around. My head is still spinning.

  10. Owen Bradley

    Cody Reed was the men’s solo six day champion, not the three day champ as the picture caption states. I want him to get full credit for all 6 days. :-)

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