October’s full of fun. There’s Oktoberfest, Halloween, and Frugal Fun Day. And this past week, there was Ultra Pirineu, Spartathlon, and some World Mountain Running Association World Cup racing. Get a warm drink for your Monday read, and is it pumpkin spice for you too?
Ultra Pirineu – Bagà, Spain
Several race distances blew through the Pyrenees, but the 100-kilometer run with its 6,600 meters (21,650 feet) of elevation gain was the premier contest. The event was part of the Spartan Trail World Championships.
Núria Picas (Spain) stayed just ahead of Claudia Tremps (Spain) all day, but never really got that far away. That was enough, though, and Picas won in 12:12, and Tremps followed in 12:23. The two gapped the rest of the field, and there was another big gap between fourth and fifth place.
Varvara Shikanova (Russia) was third in 13:00. Emily Schmitz (USA, lives in Colombia) and Irene Fuertes (Spain) were fourth and fifth in 13:47 and 15:26, respectively.
The front three men created some late race excitement. Only in the last 10k did Miguel Heras (Spain) and Dmitry Mityaev (Russia) separate, and then it was 47-year-old Heras going to the front. Heras won in 10:38 and Mityaev, the race’s 2019 winner, was second in 10:42.
It was way back in 2010 that Heras first won The North Face Endurance Challenge 50 Mile Championships in San Francisco, California, and this was Mityaev’s second straight runner-up finish here.
Lurking just behind, Pau Capell (Spain) made a second-half charge to gain the leaders, and finished third in 10:43.
Ionel Manole (Romania) was fourth in 11:03 and Jordi Gamito (Spain) was fifth in 11:05.
Dylan Bowman (USA) was seventh in 11:24.
Esther Chesang (Kenya), a 2:26 marathoner as recently as 11 months ago, won the women’s race in 4:16. It’s certainly been a breakout year in European mountain races for Kenyans.
Núria Gil (Spain) chased to second in 4:19, and Emelie Forsberg (Sweden, lives in Norway) was just behind in third at 4:21. Ida Nilsson (Sweden, lives in Norway) and Gemma Arenas (Spain) were fourth and fifth in 4:26 and 4:35, respectively.
Peyton Thomas (USA) was 11th in 4:58.
Robert Pkemboi gave Kenya a sweep of the top position, and the men’s race wasn’t that close. Pkemboi’s 3:37 finish brought him to the line a full 10 minutes faster than everyone else.
Spanish runners did take the next 13 finish positions though with Daniel Castillo, Victor Del Aguila, Eduard Teixidor, and Julen Calvo running 3:47, 3:48, 3:48, and 3:57, respectively.
Spartathlon – Athens, Greece
The historic race celebrated its 40th year by running the historic 153-mile route between Athens and Sparta. In addition to the tradition, the Spartathlon course is known for daytime heat, nighttime cold, and mountain passes going as high as 3,900 feet above sea level.
Diāna Džaviza (Latvia, lives in Austria) won in 25:03, the second-best time ever. The finish was only 15 minutes back of Patrycja Bereznowska‘s 2017 course record, and was 21 minutes better than Džaviza’s own winning time from 2021.
Marisa Lizak (USA) was second in 25:34, the race’s fifth-fastest finish ever, and Micah Morgan (USA) was third in 27:23.
Hellas yeah. OMG, I hope that line hits for you too, or do I only make myself smile? Zisimopoulos Fotis (Greece) overcame an early wrong turn and still won in 21:00. That wrong turn was said to have added some 7k to his distance, but Fotis incredibly raced to the race’s third-fastest time ever. It was a repeat win, way better than his 21:57 first-place finish from 2021.
Somiya Toru (Japan) was second in 21:18, and that was the race’s fourth-fastest finish ever. It was a fast year! The 42-year-old Toru ran a 2:16 marathon in December 2021. That’s incredible on multiple counts. A 2:16 marathon as a 42 year old is really fast, and to turn from that to a competitive Spartathlon run so quickly is some big range!
The 2018 winner Ishikawa Yoshihiko (Japan) was third in 23:06.
Additional Races and Runs
Zumaia Flysch Trail – Zumaia, Spain
The race’s 13th running was again part of the World Mountain Running Association World Cup. The contest ran 22k with 850 meters of climbing. Lucy Murigi (Kenya) and Loïc Robert (France) won in 1:39 and 1:28, and both were new course records. Full results.
Šmarna Gora – Ljubljana, Slovenia
The race’s history goes back to 1979, and runners have been going 10k with 710 meters of gain toward a mountaintop finish. And for the seventh time, Andrea Mayr (Austria) topped out first. The uphill great won this year’s race in 48:38. Local runner Timotej Bečan (Slovenia) beat the men’s field in 43:47. Full results.
K-Way MaxiRace Cape Winelands 120k – Cape Winelands, South Africa
Douglas Pickard (South Africa) and Lodelia Odendaal (South Africa) took top honors in 15:59 and 13:57. Full results.
Orcas Island 50k – Olga, Washington
The longtime Rainshadow Running race crowned Alli Lowestein and Masazumi Fujioka as 2022 winners in 6:15 and 5:16. Full results.
Perpetua Coast 50k – Yachats, Oregon
Ashley Nordell and Nick Slenning won the coastal 50k in 5:03 and 4:47. Full results.
Whitefish Trail Legacy Run 50k – Whitefish, Montana
Jennifer Lichter was first woman in 4:29, and Dyer Healy won the men’s in 4:22. Lichter won The Rut 50k and was second at the Speedgoat 50k earlier this year too. Full results.
Bogus 50/50 – Boise, Idaho
Brittany Peterson was the 50-mile winner and set a new course record in 8:54. Nick CliffOrr led the men in 9:20. Danielle Marquette and Josh McAdams, the 2009 U.S. 3,000-meter steeplechase champion, won the 50k race in 4:43 and 3:59. Both times were new course records. Full results.
DC Peaks 50 Mile – Kaysville, Utah
Becca Frei and Kilian Korth won the point-to-point run in 10:48 and 8:54. Full results.
Crested Butte Ultra – Crested Butte, Colorado
There were lots of fall colors on course. Carolyn McShea and Tim Shepard were best over 50 miles in 10:45 and 8:41, and Andrea Stofko and Anderson Heagy won the 55k in 5:34 and 4:54. Full results.
Hennepin Hundred Mile – Sterling, Illinois
The Hennepin Hundred Mile races run flat and fast on the Hennepin Canal State Trail. May Barker and Jim Macaluso won the 100-mile race in 19:21 and 15:19, respectively. And Heather Proft and Phil Young won the 50-mile race in 8:20 and 5:41. A year ago, Young ran 6:17 at the Hennepin Hundred 50 Mile race, and then won the Tunnel Hill 100 Mile in 12:44. He’s expected back at Tunnel Hill in November, and what can he now run coming off this 5:41? Full results.
Stump Jump 50k – Chattanooga, Tennessee
Lea Mulligan was first female in 5:35, and Peter Kazery won a close men’s race by 50 seconds at 5:07. Full results.
Arkansas Traveller 100 Mile – Perryville, Arkansas
Laura Kearns and Chas Kabanuck won the longtime 100-mile race in 20:49 and 18:21. Full results.
Yeti 100 Mile – Abingdon, Virginia
Rebecca Joyner and Lee Whitaker were race winners in 19:55 and 14:50. Full results.
Cat’s Tail Trail Marathon – New York
The threat of severe weather from Hurricane Ian never materialized at the eighth Cat’s Tail Trail Marathon. Runners instead enjoyed bluebird skies in the Catskill Mountains. Kirby Mosenthal and Ian Shultis were victorious in 5:22 and 4:38, respectively. Full results (when available).
Morgan Hill Meat Grinder 50 Mile – Fabius, New York
Sara Niccoli and Elias Dawli won in 11:35 and 8:51, and Dawli’s time marked a new course record by over two hours at the second-year race. Full results.
Hudson River 50 Mile – Fort Lee, New Jersey
Alison Heslin and Ryan Clifford won the first-year race in 8:01 and 5:47. Each earned a $2,000 cash prize. Nikki Niemeyer and Mason Coppi led the single loop 25-mile race in 3:54 and 2:44. Full results.
Call for Comments
- What else are you looking forward to this month? Maybe a pumpkin patch or haunted house, Ohio State or Cincinnati Bengals football?
- Several U.S. East Coast races were canceled or otherwise impacted by Hurricane Ian. Did you feel some of this weather too?
- What other races can you share results and information from this weekend?