Canada, Tennessee, and multiple races in Spain highlight this week’s column. We recap the Golden Trail World Series finale, peek in on the still-happening Big’s Backyard Ultra, and eye other running fun too. Monday, let’s do this.
The One Race – El Hierro, Canary Islands, Spain
Set up specifically for the Golden Trail World Series finale, The One Race ran 37k and with 2,800 meters (9,200 feet) of elevation gain under hot skies. Many runners commented on the high temperatures during which the race was run.
Maude Mathys (Switzerland) beat the women’s field by five minutes with a 4:05 winning time and was incredibly close to the top of the men’s race as well.
[In 2015, Mathys received a warning without suspension from the Disciplinary Chamber for Doping Cases of Swiss Olympic for two positive tests for clomifene [previously clomiphene] after it was determined that she was mistakenly taking the drug without first obtaining a World Anti-Doping Agency Therapeutic Use Exemption.]
2021 breakout star Nienke Brinkman (Netherlands) was second in 4:10, also close to the front of the whole race. Five minutes back of race winner Mathys, Brinkman was incredibly almost 14 minutes ahead of the third-place woman. Mathys and Brinkman gapped the rest of the women’s field by a wide margin.
Anaïs Sabrié (France) was third in 4:24, and she herself finished in no (wo)man’s land too, far behind second place but also well ahead of fourth.
Odile Spycher (Switzerland) and Dani Moreno (USA) were fourth and fifth in 4:37 and 4:39.
The rest of the women’s top 10 included:
6 – Blandine L’Hirondel (France) – 4:42
7 – Elise Poncet (France) – 4:50
8 – Nuria Gil (Spain) – 4:54
9 – Anna-Stiina Erkkila (Finland) – 4:56
10 – Caitlin Fielder (New Zealand) – 5:08
Mathys of course was the GTWS female winner. She was undefeated across four GTWS races this year.
Francesco Puppi (Italy) shook off a challenging start to his year and finished with a surprise 3:58 first-place run. Thibaut Baronian (France) was a close second, almost two minutes behind, in 4:00. The two frontrunners gapped the rest of the men’s group.
Barely a minute separated the next three men. Anders Kjaerevik (Norway) was third in 4:09. Frederic Tranchand (France) was fourth, also in 4;09, and Jan Margarit (Spain) was fifth in 4:10.
Stian Angermund (Norway) dominated the start to the series, but was just sixth here in 4:13. Bartłomiej Przedwojewski (Poland) was 12 seconds behind for seventh. Rémi Bonnet (Switzerland), Johann Baujard (France), and Anthony Felber (France) were eighth, ninth, and 10th in 4:14, 4:18, and 4:22, respectively.
Angermund did just enough to win the overall series ahead of second-place Puppi.
Big’s Backyard Ultra – Bell Buckle, Tennessee
They’re still running the 4.16-mile loop in Tennessee and will likely keep going well into Monday. The once-small Big’s Backyard Ultra run is now the world championship for the last-person-standing format, where each runner has an hour to finish the loop, and then begin the next interval.
At the time of this writing, 16 runners are still running. That group includes race veterans like Courtney Dauwalter, Maggie Guterl, and Harvey Lewis. Dave Proctor (Canada) sits atop the leaderboard with the shortest cumulative time, working from a 47:30 average loop. Mike Wardian, a predicted favorite, dropped from the race at around 8:30 p.m. Tennessee time, completing 36 laps (149.76 miles).
Thirty two, of 35, runners ran for at least 26 hours.
Penyagolosa Trails – Castellón, Spain
Two competitive races – a 109k and a 60k – made up the Penyagolosa Trails event in eastern Spain.
Anete Svilpe (Latvia) won the 109k race with a 14:44 finish. She led for the entirety of the race. Spanish runners María Obrero Catalán and Leire Martínez were second and third in 15:22 and 16:08, respectively.
Spanish runners took the first five spots in the 60k race. Marta Molist broke free from Gemma Arenas in the race’s second half to gain the victory in 6:28. Arenas was runner-up in 6:37 and Eva Mesado was third in 6:56.
Aleksei Tolstenko (Russia) escaped his chasers to win the men’s long-course race in 11:48. Just over a minute separated second- and third-place Rodrigo Monasor (Spain) and Robert Hajnal (Romania) in 12:07 and 12:08.
Much like in the women’s 60k, Spanish men stuffed the podium. Miguel Caballero won for the third time, and first time since 2017, with a 5:34 run. José Ángel Fernández and Abel Carretero were second and third in 5:41 and 5:45, respectively.
Ultra Sanabria – Sanabria Lake Natural Park, Spain
The fifth-year event included a six-day stage race totaling 212k (132 miles) with 10,000 meters (32,800 feet) of gain, a three-day stage run, and then two single-day races on the weekend.
Carla Junquera Marques (Spain) led the women’s six-day race with a 31:43 cumulative time, and Bruno Coelho (Portugal) topped the overall field in 22:02. Both winners also won each day’s stage, though there were only two female runners.
Over three days, it was Oihana Kortazar (Spain) in 11:51 and Manuel Merillas (Spain) totaling 9:25. Merillas was just two minutes ahead of Miguel Heras (Spain) at the end of the race. It was way back in 2012 that Heras won The North Face Endurance Challenge Championship.
Additional Races and Runs
Cappadocia Ultra-Trail – Turkey
The 119k Cappadocia Ultra-Trail raced around a part of central Turkey known for its distinctive rock formations, nicknamed “fairy chimneys.” Dominika Stelmach (Poland) won the women’s race in 13:16. Men’s winner Diego Pazos (Switzerland) led everyone in 11:50. Full results.
Squamish 50 Mile – Squamish, British Columbia
The weekend-long Squamish 50 Mile event started with Saturday’s 50-mile mountain run. The race took off in heavy rain, what race director Gary Robbins called an “atmospheric river” event, amassing almost six inches of rain (150 millimeters) in 28 hours. Anne-Marie Madden gained the women’s win in 9:44, and only 31 seconds separated men’s 1-2 finishers Mike Sidic and Nick Elson. The pair ran 7:43 and 7:44. Sunday included a 50k, affording runners the chance to double up, but conditions were no better and just as wet as the day earlier’s race. Katherine Short and Brendan Hunt won the 50k in 5:41 and 5:12, respectively. Full results.
PCT 50 Mile – Cleveland National Forecast, California
Jade Belzberg was the women’s winner in 8:15. It was the race’s fourth best finish in history. Orion Feist led the men in 9:12. Full results.
Pony Express Trail Run – Faust, Utah
Ashley Paulson was the 100-mile winner, running 17:26. Richard McDonell was the first man in 19:55. [Ashley Paulson served a six-month doping sanction, in 2015 and 2016, due to a doping violation in triathlon for a positive test for ostarine, a selective androgen receptor modulator (SARM).] Full results.
Cedro Peak 54k – Tijeras, New Mexico
Madison McClintock beat the women’s field with a 6:31 finish time, and seven months after serious knee surgery, Jason Schlarb was back atop the ultra podium. He finished in 4:44. Full results.
Mines of Spain – Dubuque, Iowa
Run on a 20-mile loop inside Louis Murphy Park, the Mines of Spain 100-mile race afforded runners with big views of big muddy, the Mississippi River. Timothy Adamski and Anna Curtis won the race in 19:10 and 23:10. Full results.
Suffer Better Fall Trail Run 50k – Pine, Colorado
The fifth Suffer Better Fall 50k ran around Staunton State Park west of Denver. Official results aren’t yet available, but social media points to Darcy Piceu winning the women’s race. Let us know who was out front in the men’s race! Full results (when available).
Sage Burner 50k – Gunnison, Colorado
Emma Page Patterson and Noah Williams won close ones at Mad Moose Events’s Sage Burner 50k. Page Patterson finished in 4:41, five minutes ahead of second place, and Williams ran 3:54, just over a minute better than his chaser. Full results.
Wild Duluth Races – Duluth, Minnesota
The rocky and rooty Superior Hiking Trail near Lake Superior featured at the Wild Duluth Races. Janelle Lantz and Thomas Lerdall won the 50k in 5:43 and 4:29, and Gretchen Metsa and Mike Ward won the 100k in 11:53 and 11:25. Full results.
Oil Creek 100 Mile – Titusville, Pennsylvania
Unforgiving, historic, and gnarly, the Oil Creek 100 Mile race proclaims. The race happens in northwest Pennsylvania on a three-loop course. Tami Sari won the women’s race in 27:47 and Shawn Bubany was first among the small group of 26 finishers in 21:23. In the 100k, Rebecca Kosek won for the women with a 12:56 finish, while David Endress won for men in 12:19. Full results.
Cloudsplitter 100 Mile – Norton, Virginia
Mika Thewes led the race and the women in 22:37. Men’s winner Steve Campbell came in 22:59. Full results (when available).
Call for Comments
Did you follow Big’s Backyard, the Golden Trail World Series, or other races this weekend? What race best got you excited to run?