This Week In Running: September 16, 2019

This Week in Running Justin Mock TWIRThis week we’ve got Colorado’s Run Rabbit Run 100 Mile race, a Skyrunner World Series contest in Italy, and a competitive sixth race in the World Mountain Running Association World Cup, in Italy too. We’re rolling into Monday, and glad that you’re coming with us.

Run Rabbit Run 100 Mile – Steamboat Springs, Colorado

It was the eighth-annual Run Rabbit Run 100 Mile, and 13th-annual 50-mile race. The race name plays on the name of nearby Rabbit Ears Pass and a John Updike novel of a similar name. The 100-mile contest again was split between “hare” and “tortoise” divisions, and the hares competed for an incredible $75,000 cash purse. $15,000 went to each of the winners, and that makes this the richest trail ultramarathon in the world.


Thirty-seven miles into the race and Kyle Pietari was reportedly already puking. The 100-mile veteran–10th at this year’s Western States 100–stayed the course though and rallied the rest of the way. Never more than a few minutes away from 2017 race winner Jim Rebenack, the two dueled all day and with just five miles to go, Pietari held a scant 18-second advantage, according to the live-timing splits. And then Pietari hit the gas and finished six minutes in front of Rebenack. Pietari won in 19:14 and second-place Rebenack finished in 19:20. And then Pietari characteristically threw up at the finish too.

Jeff Mogavero was third in 19:49.

In the next-day 50-mile race, Arthur Whitehead was victorious in 7:17, over an hour better than second.

Kyle Pietari on his way to winning the 2019 Run Rabbit Run 100 Mile. Photo: iRunFar/Meghan Hicks


Since being named UltraRunning Magazine‘s 2013 (North American) Ultrarunner of the Year, injuries have kept Michele Yates from racing very often, but she always tries to peak for Run Rabbit Run. Yates won–for the third time–in 22:10. That’s 23 minutes better than her 2018 winning time.

Melissa Beaury moved up all day toward a second-place 23:35 finish, and Tessa Chesser was third in 24:11. They won $8,500 and $5,000 each for their podium finishes.

Raquel Harper won the women’s 50-mile race in 9:38.

Full results.

The 2019 Run Rabbit Run 100 Mile women’s podium (from left to right): 2. Melissa Beaury, 1. Michele Yates, and 3. Tessa Chesser. Photo: iRunFar/Meghan Hicks

ZacUp Skyrace – Pasturo, Italy

We’re almost to the end of the year’s Skyrunner World Series. The ZacUp Skyrace 27-kilometer (17 miles) was the year’s 13th race, and it gained 2,650 meters (8,700 feet) of elevation gain on an above-the-clouds course that included chains and ropes. One uphill section was said to be at a 75% incline?!


Jean Baptiste Simukeka (Rwanda), a 1:02 half marathoner and 2:17 marathoner, won and set a new course record in 2:49. Halfway into the race he was in third and three minutes behind, but he ran down the frontrunners. It was a repeat win from 2018 too.

Series regular Zaid Ait Malek (Spain) was second in 2:52, and Daniel Antonioli (Italy) was third, only 30 seconds back in 2:53.

Early leader Kiyaka Denise Bosire (Kenya) finished fourth in 2:55, and Pere Rullan (Spain) was fifth in 3:00.

Jean Baptiste Simukeka, 2019 ZacUp Skyrace champion. Photo: Skyrunner World Series


Denisa Dragomir (Romania) scored a big win and a new course record in 3:12. It was her third win here and she too did it on the downhill. Overall series leader Sheila Avilés (Spain) was second in 3:14, and Elisa Desco (Italy) was third in 3:22.

From 2010 to 2012, Desco served a two-year doping ban from the IAAF after she tested positive for EPO at the 2009 World Mountain Running Championships.

Ingrid Mutter (Romania) and Georgia Tindley (U.K.) were fourth and fifth in 3:32 and 3:33, respectively.

Full results (when available).

The next Skyrunner World Series race is next weekend’s Pirin Ultra Skyrace 66k in Bulgaria.

Denisa Dragomir, 2019 ZacUp Skyrace champion. Photo: Skyrunner World Series

Drei-Zinnenlauf – Sexten, Italy

The 17.5k Drei-Zinnenlauf race was the year’s sixth World Mountain Running Association World Cup race. The race finished under the three iconic Lavaredo peaks.


Petro Mamu (Eritrea) and Joe Gray (USA) dueled at the front of the race, and when Gray took a fall, Mamu escaped for the win. The two raced to 1:22:36 and 1:23:03 finishes, and Mamu’s time marked a new course record.

Mamu tested positive after both the 2017 World Mountain Running Championships and the 2017 World Long Distance Mountain Running Championships for fenoterol. He was given a nine-month doping ban by the IAAF, reportedly a reduction from two years for cooperation.

Filimon Abraham (Eritrea) was third in 1:25, Francesco Puppi (Italy) was fourth, and series leader Andrew Douglas (U.K.) was fifth, both in 1:27.


Sarah Tunstall (U.K.) led the entire way and set a new course too, running 1:41. World Cup leader Sarah McCormack (Ireland) was second in 1:46, and Victoria Kreuzer (Switzerland) was third in 1:47. Lucie Marsanova (Czech Republic) was fourth in 1:50, and Alexandra Hauser was fifth in 1:52.

Full results.

Sarah Tunstall, 2019 Drei-Zinnenlauf champion. Photo: World Mountain Running Association

Tor des Géants – Courmayeur, Italy

The 205-mile Tor des Géants runs in a loop from Courmayeur with a 150-hour cutoff. That’s six days, folks. Along the way this mountain race collects some 80,000 feet of elevation gain.


Oliviero Bosatelli (Italy), 50 years old, won the race’s 10th running. He won back in 2016 too. Bosatelli finished in 72:37 and despite wintry conditions early in the race, his finish time was some 90 minutes better than last year’s winning time and over two hours better than his own finish from 2016.

Second- and third-place Galen Reynolds (Canada, but lives in England?) and Danilo Lantermino (Italy) finished in 77:06 and 79:09.

Deeper results included 16th overall John Kelly (USA, but lives in England) in 92:52, and 27th-place Jason Koop (USA) in 97:06.

Defending champion Franco Collé (Italy) did not finish.


2018 winner Silvia Trigueros (Spain) repeated as champ, and impressively finished sixth overall in 85:23. That’s over two hours better than a year ago, and looks to be a new course best.

Second- and third-place Jocelyne Pauly (France) and Chiara Boggio (Italy) finished in 94:22 and 96:55, respectively.

Deeper results included Darcy Piceu (USA) and Nicky Spinks (U.K.) who finished together in 106:15, and Amy Sproston (USA) finished in 107:15.

Full results.

Other Races and Runs

Tahoe 200 Mile

They’re over two days into the Tahoe 200 Mile race around the Big Blue lake between California and Nevada, and the race continues. The overall winner is in though and Michael McKnight finished the loop in 50:56. Angela Mayer leads the women with 192 miles done at the time of this writing. Tracking.

Pine to Palm 100 Mile

Sergio Morales and Jace Hinesly battled at the Pine to Palm 100 Mile race in Oregon. At 50 miles in, Hinesly led by 10 minutes. Morales pulled even by mile 66, and opened a 20-minute lead at mile 80. Hinesly cut that to nine minutes with 10 miles to go, but couldn’t get all the way back. Morales won in 17:37 and Hinesly was a close second in 17:41. Stephanie Fronk won the women’s race in 26:21, and Dani Reese was the second woman home in a not-too-distant 26:45. Full results.

The North Face Endurance Challenge Series – Wisconsin

The North Face Endurance Challenge Series – Wisconsin race toured the Kettle Moraine State Forest and parts of the Ice Age Trail, and Justin Grunewald won the 50-mile, big. He finished in 6:02, 46 minutes in front of second place. Celia Stockwell led the women in 7:50. Full results.

Plain 100 Mile

The Plain 100 Mile is a tough 100 miler made tougher because it goes without aid, course markings, or much fanfare. 2019 winners were Ian Seabury and Rachel Baird in 23:40 and 33:24. It also appears that Baird was the only female finisher. Full results.

Folsom Lake Ultra Trail

The Folsom Lake Ultra Trail runs 68.5 miles around the lake of the same name in northern California. Michael Cordsen and Meghan Laws won in 12:51 and 13:46. Full results (when available).

Michael Cordsen and Meghan Laws, 2019 Folsom Lake Ultra Trail champions. Photo: Singletrack Running

Call for Comments

Your turn! What are your thoughts on this weekend’s collection of races, and what else did you take part in that you can tell us about? Leave a comment to share results and stories from more events around the world. Thanks!

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 17 comments

  1. John Vanderpot

    Sept. is just packed with tough long courses — Mogollon was this weekend too, up in Pine, AZ, had a great time, many thanks to Noah & Co.!

  2. Jeremy

    Couple of details on Mogollon Monster – Buck Blankenship and Nathan Moody were battling it out all day, and Moody prevailed. In the women’s race, Erin Dial was leading most of the day, but Elle Spacek reportedly overtook her on the last climb and finished almost 45 minutes ahead.

    9 runners got the 24 hour buckle, possibly due to good cloud cover (and some sprinkles) in the afternoon.

    1. John Vanderpot

      And from the Footnote Dept., Tony Russ ran the 400+ miles from New Mexico, through the woods and in sandals, to get to the start…any word on whether he ran home?

  3. Nathan Leehman

    Hey IRF Team. FWIW, John Kelly did not run Tor des Geants this year. He was the top American finisher in Tor des Glaciers, a longer, unmarked course (450k!!) run for the first time this year. American Kevin Hadfield (I believe living outside the US) was the highest credited American, with Jason Koop coming in second. I was a few hours behind that finishing 3rd American and 51st overall. Just to set the record straight since I spent over 100 hours working my ass off… :)

    1. Sean

      Nathan, John Anderson was the top American finisher at Tor des Glaciers in 7th place. John Kelly finished 16th at Tor des Geants. Kevin Hadfield was 19th at Tor des Geants and he lives in Colorado, and Jason Koop was 27th and he, too, lives in Colorado.

      Nice job in getting through that incredible adventure run/race!

      1. Nathan Leehman

        Yup, got my Johns confused. Happens more often than you’d think. Worth mentioning Kevin’s finish, though. Sorry for the error on the US placements – I was going off TOR’s categorization…never occurred to me to check other registrations. Again, that’s why you all get paid the big bucks. Thanks for the effort and updating to include Kevin.

    2. Amy Sproston

      Dude! You were there. John Kelly certainly didn’t run Glaciers, as this was his first go at Tor (I believe), and only past finishers could apply for Glaciers (plus he’s listed in the results). And while I realize Tor does it differently, John Kelly is as American as can be, so regardless of where he’s living, he’s still an American finisher. Just like I’m technically now Jordanian per Tor, but I’m calling myself an American finisher, not a Jordanian one…

      Loved hanging out with you! Come visit!!

      1. Nathan Leehman

        Dudette! I was there, but never met the guy. He finished way ahead of me, went ‘sploring around Europe after finishing, and was registered under another country (and nope, TOR had you as an American…sorry, you’re still officially on the books)! :) You KNOW I was at the finish line for every American I could track…which was all but two at the time. Totally not questioning anything about his finish, he did GREAT, and I’m sure will do even better if he chooses to with a finish under his belt. Cheers! Also, my apologies to John Anderson, who I was defending with the shoutout to Glaciers…

    3. Nathan Leehman

      Yeah, so leave it to me to be both completely sure of myself and completely incorrect! Must have been the jet lag, but that’s why I generally leave it to you all, the pros. WTH – I’ll just stay off the internet. John crushed it, just not registered as an American… :). FWIW, I think you might have missed Kevin, but my impression is he’s living overseas as well. Who knows. I’m probably wrong on that as well…

        1. Nathan Leehman

          You got me with all that Montane gear. :) Bad assumption, but we were rooting for you! Victor B made sure my wife knew who you were during the race, and the real goal to all my misinformation above was to make sure you were included…I should have just shut up after that! Cheers & great job, and don’t just throw that out there…I may be at your door sooner than later!

  4. The Woodsman

    That’s Mike McKnight’s second 200 win in a row (after the Big Foot 200 last month) AND second Course Record in a row! (CCW direction) Guy’s on fire. Next up: Moab 240.

    Should be getting some Ultra Runner of the Year votes!

  5. Kevin Hadfield

    Ha! Thanks for the shoutout in the comments all!! I finished about an hour and a half after John Kelly who had a great race at TOR. Confirming for all that yes indeed, Galen lives in London, England but he’s Canadian through and through. Awesome job to everyone out there this year. Big american contingent this year… fun times! @Nathan, did we meet out there? Sorry we missed each other if not.

    Also, I’m Carbondale, CO based, I just try to get out to TOR every year.

    Kevin Hadfield

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