This Week In Running: May 24, 2021

This Week In Running’s trail and ultra recap for May 24, 2021.

By on May 24, 2021 | Comments

Thanks to BOA for sponsoring This Week in Running!

Unfortunately, the tragic Yellow River Stone Forest 100k in northwestern China overshadows anything else that happened this week in running. iRunFar has separately covered that fateful race where 21 runners died in a powerful storm.

A loss of this scale has never happened in ultrarunning, and I can’t help but think of the 1996 Mount Everest disaster, recounted in the book Into Thin Air. But, only eight climbers died in that storm and only 12 that whole season on Everest. We feel profound heartbreak for the 21 runners who lost their lives, and we grieve with all of you.

Stick with us though, as we’ll attempt to recap the rest of the week in trail and ultramarathon racing with results from South Africa, Spain, Minnesota, New Mexico, California, and elsewhere around the globe.

Nedbank Runified 50k — Gqeberha, South Africa

We’ve had a string of world records in recent weeks to report on, and South Africa’s Nedbank Runified 50k delivered another. Ketema Negasa, a 2:11 Ethiopian marathoner, won the speed contest in 2:42:07. The mark bettered South African Thompson Magawana‘s 2:43:20 road record that had stood since 1988. Remarkably, the top-five men all ran under 2:43, and the top six all broke the previous world record.

Negasa also bettered American CJ Albertson’s 2:42:30 track, or all-surface, record from November of 2020, and so too did the top-four men.

Irvette Van Zyl (South Africa) won the women’s race in 3:04:23. The time is just over five minutes off of Des Linden’s 2:59:54 pending world record from April 2021. Van Zyl is a two-time Olympian and holds a 2:31 marathon best. Lillian Chemweno (Kenya), herself a 2:41 marathoner, was second in 3:05.

iRunFar has separately covered the race in greater detail.

Full results.

Ketema Negasa - 50k World Record

Ketema Negasa setting a new 50k World Record at the 2021 Nedbank Runified 50k. Photo: Nedbank Running Club

Trail Menorca Camí de Cavalls — Menorca, Spain

Camí de Cavalls is an historic path around the island of Menorca, and the Trail Menorca Camí de Cavalls 185k (115 miles) gets all of it.


Antoine Guillon (France) again finished in front, this time in 16:46. It’s at least his fifth win here, and appears to be his best finish time too. This one was close though, and second-place Juan José Larrotcha (Spain) and third-place Juan Maria Jimenez (Spain) chased to 17:07 and 17:16 finishes.

In the 100k race, Jordi Gamito (Spain) won in 8:50, and Tòfol Castanyer (Spain) won the 85k in 6:54.

2021 Trail Menorca Cami de Cavalls mens podium

The 2021 Trail Menorca Camí de Cavalls 185k men’s podium (l-to-r): 2. Juan José Larrotcha, 1. Antoine Guillon, and 3. Juan Maria Jimenez. Photo: Trail Menorca Camí de Cavalls


In the women’s 185k, Claire Bannwarth (France) dipped under the 20-hour mark to win in 19:51. Marina Kollassa (Germany) and Eva Orives (Spain) gained podium finishes in 21:13 and 23:04, respectively.

Karina Gómez (Spain) won the women’s 100k in 9:48, and Neus Antich (Spain) led the 85k in 9:54.

Full results.

2021 Trail Menorca Cami de Cavalls womens podium

The 2021 Trail Menorca Camí de Cavalls 185k women’s podium (l-to-r): 2. Marina Kollassa, 1. Claire Bannwarth, and 3. Eva Orives. Photo: Trail Menorca Camí de Cavalls

Additional Races and Runs

The North Face 100k — Moganshan, China

In eastern China, Jia-Sheng Shen and Wen-Fei Xie won The North Face 100k men’s and women’s races in 11:12 and 14:55, respectively. In a challenging realization, Shen won the 2019 Vibram Hong Kong 100k ahead of runner-up Jing Liang, one of the runners who died in this weekend’s Yellow River Stone Forest 100k in northwestern China. Full results.

Willamette Valley Marathon — Salem, Oregon

Ian Sharman negative split the road Willamette Valley Marathon to win in 2:37. Melissa Hand was the women’s champ in 2:57. Full results.

Bishop High Sierra Ultras — Bishop, California

The 24th Bishop High Sierra Ultra 100k crowned Humberto Baeza and Gina Myers as winners in 9:56 and 12:01. Baeza’s time ranks third-best ever, and Myers gained her second win at the event. The event held a number of race distances, including a 50-mile race. Can anyone share more results from the weekend? Full results (when available).

Hootenanny 50k — Missoula, Montana

Racing on a 10.5-mile trail loop, Jeff Mogavero and Erin Clark won the Hootnenany 50k in 3:56 and 4:12. Full results.

Jemez Mountain 50 Mile — Los Alamos, New Mexico

Nathan Moody and Darcy Piceu won the Jemez Mountain 50 Mile race in 10:28 and 11:21. This marks, we think, Piceu’s fourth Jemez victory over the years. Katie Arnold, also the race’s 2018 winner, was second this year in 11:39. John Herrick and world-class snowshoer Michelle Hummel won the 50k race in 4:38 and 5:09. Hummel bettered a 2018 course record by just seven seconds. Full results.

Superior Spring Trail Race 50k — Lutsen, Minnesota

Kirk Dewindt and Nathan Swenson won the Superior Spring Trail Race 50k and 25k. The pair went for 4:03 and 1:58 finishes on the Superior Hiking Trail course. Kaelyn Williams and Kerrie Berg topped the women’s distances in 5:27 and 2:50, respectively. Full results.

Witch Dance Trail Run 50k — Houston, Mississippi

The Witch Dance Trail Run 50k runs on the Witch Dance Trail just off historic Natchez Trace. Robert Kazery and Anna Felz won the race, though we don’t have their finish times. Can anyone share more information from on site? Full results (when available).

Yamacraw 50k — Stearns, Kentucky

Alex Minor, a recent Marshall University cross-country runner, raced through the Daniel Boone National Forest to win the Yamacraw 50k in 4:19. The race has an iconic finish at an abandoned coal mining town with a giant pedestrian bridge. Women’s winner Ruth Caraway finished in 5:52. Full results.

Possum’s Revenge 69 Mile — Graford, Texas

There’s the United Kingdom, and the Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses, and in Texas, there’s the Possum Kingdom State Park. Trail Racing Over Texas hosted the Possum’s Revenge group of races there and over 69 miles, Cory Lewandowski and Lindsay Dwyer won in 12:22 and 12:33, respectively. Codie Hair and Jen Strawn led the 52-mile race in and 10:15 and 11:49, respectively. And in the 56k, it was Maks Mikhalov and Kailyn Yackell who won in 5:01 and 5:57, respectively. Full results.

Lindsay Dwyer - 2021 Possums Revenge 69 Mile champion

Lindsay Dwyer, 2021 Possum’s Revenge 69 Mile champion. Photo: Trail Racing Over Texas

Call for Comments

It was a tough weekend out there for the ultrarunning community, but what good news can you share?

Justin Mock

Justin Mock is the This Week In Running columnist for iRunFar. He’s been writing about running for 10 years. Based in Europe, Justin has run as fast as 2:29 for a road marathon and finished as high as fourth in the Pikes Peak Marathon.