It’s getting late in the year and it’s getting cold in some parts of the world, but we’re still here, and so too are the JFK 50 Mile in Maryland, the Golden Gate Trail Classic in California, and Ultra-Trail Cape Town is on deck in South Africa. Let’s dig in, and if you’re on the U.S. East Coast, maybe dig out, for another Monday.
JFK 50 Mile – Boonsboro, Maryland
It was the race’s 60th year! The point-to-point “horseshoe” style course combined both trail and road terrain, and cash money went 10 deep with $1,500 to each of the winners. A big field of 966 finished the historic race.
Garrett Corcoran was just off the lead 25 miles into the race when coming off the trail, but he smoked the field the rest of the way. The former University of California runner, also a sub-4:00-minute miler, finished in 5:29. It was the race’s fifth-fastest finish ever. That means that Corcoran is trailing only Hayden Hawks, Adam Peterman, Jim Walmsley, and Stephen Kersh on the all-time chart. The breakthrough wasn’t totally from nowhere though. This 26-year-old was earlier eighth at this year’s Canyons 100k by UTMB and second at the Speedgoat 50k by UTMB.
Makai Clemons made a late charge to move into second, running 5:32, and third-place Preston Cates had his best race of the year with a 5:33 finish. Cates was just over a full minute back of runner-up Clemons. Matt Seidel and Ryan Sullivan were fourth and fifth in 5:41 and 5:47, respectively.
Sarah Biehl went off, and to the top of the record books. The 28-year-old finished in 6:05, and that smashed Ellie Greenwood‘s decade-old 6:12 course record. Biehl was six minutes better than Greenwood, and she’s another five minutes ahead of third-best-ever Emily Harrison while leveling up the all-time charts. Biehl finished last year’s race in 6:22 as runner-up, and the year before she finished fifth in 7:22. She earlier ran 2:39 at October’s Columbus Marathon too.
Caitriona Jennings (Ireland), the 2022 European 50k champion, was a distant second in 6:28 while setting a masters record. Shea Aquilano ran 6:40 for third. Fourth- and fifth-place Natalie Sandoval and Tara Dower both went under seven hours too with 6:42 and 6:48 finishes.
Additional Races and Runs
Everest Trail Race – Kathmandu, Nepal
Miguel Heras (Spain) won the 170-kilometer (105 miles) six-day stage race, and Phurwa Sherpa (Nepal) was the leading woman. Heras dueled with Summan Kulung (Nepal) for the win, and Sherpa had to overcome a late race ankle injury that nearly kept her from starting the final stage. The race winners totaled 21:28 and 33:43 for the six days.
K-Way SkyRun – Witteberg Mountain, South Africa
Simon Tshabalala (South Africa) repeated from last year as the men’s 100k winner in 13:58. Simone Malan (South Africa) blew past her sub-20-hour goal and won the women’s crown in 17:55. Grobler Basson (South Africa) fought back against a few wrong turns and still set a new 65k course record in 8:02, and Biana Haw (South Africa) was first female while finishing alongside her fiancé in 11:21. Full results.
Cape Mountain 50k – Florence, Oregon
Tyler Green went high above the Pacific Ocean on the two-loop course and won in 3:44. Eliza Irish totaled 4:52 for the women’s win. Full results.
Golden Gate Trail Classic – San Francisco, California
David Laney and Amelia Boone won the 100k race in 8:43 and 10:48, and both were way ahead of everyone else. Laney was two hours in front of the next closest man, and Boone was an almost three-hour winner in the women’s race. Both Laney and Boone won $2,500 and prize money went five deep, though there were just nine women’s finishers. The 50k winners, Oleksandr Skorokhod and Susie Lozick, came through in 4:31 and 5:02, respectively. Some $2,300 went to each of the half marathon winners and Eddie Owens and Arielle Fitzgerald won in 1:15 and 1:36. Fitzgerald finished just nine seconds ahead of Chris Lundy to secure the win. Full results.
Dead Horse Ultra – Moab, Utah
Mad Moose Events crowned Morgan Galvin and Nora O’Connor as its 50-mile winners in 6:35 and 8:04, and Gary Messina and Katherine Robinson were the day’s best over 50k in 3:22 and 3:58, respectively. Full results.
Wild Hare – Bastrop, Texas
Thomas Orf and Heidi Meades led the Tejas Trails 50-mile race in 8:01 and 10:33, and Kyle Eaton and Jessie Winnett won the 50k in 4:36 and 6:27. Full results.
Duncan Ridge Trail 50k – Blairsville, Georgia
Course records came down at the race’s 12th running. Grant Barnette and Shannon Wheeler Deboef both set new marks at 5:05 and 7:00. Full results.
Next Weekend – Ultra-Trail Cape Town – Cape Town, South Africa
Maybe I’m weird, but I don’t like American Thanksgiving food. The holiday dulls the trail and ultra race schedule next week in the U.S. too, but we’ve got Ultra-Trail Cape Town coming through!
The weekend-long event includes five race distances and a first-year 100 miler. Prize money across the races totals 500,000 South African Rand, and that’s nearly $30,000. The races traverse Table Mountain National Park and the surrounding areas.
The event’s social media has revealed many of the top entrants, and we’ll hit the highlights here.
The 100-mile race champions will be the weekend’s richest. Sixty thousand South African Rand, roughly $3,500, goes to each winner. The 2022 Spartathlon winner Fotis Zisimopoulos (Greece), Prodigal Kumalo (South Africa), and Elov Olsson (Sweden) are expected in the men’s race, and Hillary Allen (USA), Naomi Brand (South Africa), and Ragna Debats (The Netherlands, lives in Spain) could challenge for the women’s win.
The 100k race is certainly the most competitive of the event’s fields, and leading 100k contenders include:
- Pere Aurell (Spain) – 3rd 2022 Transgrancanaria
- Jared Hazen (USA) – 3rd 2022 Canyons 100k
- Drew Holmen (USA) – 5th 2022 Western States 100
- Anton Krupicka (USA) – 3rd 2021 Leadville 100 Mile
- Ionel Cristian Manole (Romania) – 1st 2021 Val d’Aran 162k by UTMB
- Dmitry Mityaev (Russia) – 2nd 2021 Madeira Island Ultra-Trail
- Hannes Namberger (Germany) – 1st 2022 Lavaredo Ultra Trail by UTMB
- Sebastian Spehler (France) – 2nd 2022 Grand Trail des Templiers
- Michelino Sunseri (USA) – 3rd 2022 Speedgoat 50k by UTMB
- Olivia Amber (USA) – 1st 2022 Seven Sisters Skyline
- Nicole Bitter (USA) -3rd 2022 Javelina Jundred Mile
- Camille Bruyas (France) – 10th 2022 Western States 100
- Mimmi Kotka (Sweden) – 1st 2022 Lavaredo Ultra Trail by UTMB
- Ekatrina Mityaeva (Russia) – 3rd 2021 Madeira Island Ultra-Trail
- Maryline Nakache (France) – 3rd 2021 Ultra Trail Cape Town 100k
- Kelly Wolf (USA) – 4th 2018 Ultra Trail Cape Town 100k
Robbie Simpson (U.K.), Jeshurun Small (USA), and Tessa Chesser (USA) are counted on as among the men’s and women’s frontrunners.
Top entrants include Bernard Dematteis (Italy), Martin Dematteis (Italy), 2015 race winner Christiaan Greyling (South Africa), Janosch Kowalczyk (Germany), and women’s favorite Jasmine Nunige (Switzerland).
Call for Comments
- The December 4 California International Marathon, December 10 Hellgate 100k, and the December 10 and 11 Desert Solstice Track Invitational are still among the end-of-year highlights to come. What races besides these are on your watch list before the end of 2022?
- What other details can you share to fill in on this week in running?