Yngvild Kaspersen looks to test herself against the mountain and her competition at this weekend’s Pikes Peak Marathon. In the following interview, Yngvild talks about why she’s raced less the past few years, what sort of races she’s focusing on now, and why she’s looking forward to the fast trails of Pikes Peak.
Yngvild Kaspersen Pre-2019 Pikes Peak Marathon Interview Transcript
iRunFar: Bryon Powell of iRunFar here with Yngvild Kaspersen before the 2019 Pikes Peak Marathon. How are you?
Yngvild Kaspersen: I’m great, thank you. How are you?
iRunFar: I’m great. I understand you’ve been in the United States for a few weeks.
Kaspersen: Yeah, I’ve been here for a bit over two weeks now.
iRunFar: Yeah? And is that for vacation, for training?
Kaspersen: I have some friends living in Nederland outside of Boulder, so I’ve just been there visiting them, training, having a vacation, being in the altitude.
iRunFar: So a little bit of both. Preparing for Pikes Peak.
iRunFar: So back in 2015 and 2016 you were racing a lot, and then not so much in 2017 or 2018. What happened?
Kaspersen: So I didn’t stop running. I’ve been continuing running but mostly I’ve been running more roads trying to train more speedwork. Also I was a bit tired in 2016. I was traveling a lot, doing a lot of races, and I just needed a break from it. But then I missed the trails too much and I decided to do more this year.
iRunFar: And the schedule even this year is a bit different than when you were racing in 2015, 2016. Some shorter races. A mix of higher profile races. Were you at Sierra-Zinal?
Kaspersen: No, I wasn’t. I was here when Sierra-Zinal was.
iRunFar: What was your big race so far this year?
Kaspersen: I had done Zegama.
iRunFar: Zegama. Yes, yes. So it’s a bit of a change. Was that intentional?
Kaspersen: Yeah, I wanted to do more shorter races so I could use my speed, like what I’ve been working for, but also there’s so many nice races I wanted to do, like Pikes Peak, and Zegama. I like the more runnable races.
iRunFar: You do?
iRunFar: I was going to ask you about that because of your resume. Probably your biggest result is Zegama. Winning there, that’s incredible, but you prefer the faster.
Kaspersen: Yeah, I do. I love also the technical races and I like to do the combination of them both, but if I could choose I would choose the runnable.
iRunFar: So this, Pikes Peak could be very good for you.
Kaspersen: It depends. I think so but also like altitude, and the heat and stuff, I don’t really know how it’s going to be and I don’t know the course, I haven’t seen it yet, but hopefully.
iRunFar: Do you prefer on a more runnable course do you prefer the uphill or the downhill?
Kaspersen: I like the combination. I like rolling, and yeah.
iRunFar: You mentioned you raced little the last couple of years. Was that anything to do with you being a full time medical student?
Kaspersen: Not really. I’ve been focusing more on my studies so now I do a bit less runs but it was always about running, so not really.
iRunFar: Not really, yeah. And you don’t, even though you live inTromsø and way up north you’re not really much of a Nordic skier. Running is your game.
Kaspersen: I am running the whole year. I can do skiing for training but I mostly run.
iRunFar: And how do you feel about your fitness coming into this year’s Pikes Peak?
Kaspersen: I’m actually not so sure because I had some weeks out basic and just getting back into it and I have some good days and some bad days, so I’m just hoping I’ll have a good day on Sunday.
iRunFar: Yeah. Who do you think will be your top competition?
Kaspersen: I haven’t really looked at who’s coming but I guess it would be a strong field like it has been in all of this Golden race series races.
iRunFar: And does that make a race like this attractive for you, having that strong competition?
Kaspersen: Of course. I like to do races where the level is high and to compete against the best is what I like.
iRunFar: Excellent. Well I look forward to seeing what you can run on a faster course like this this weekend.
Kaspersen: Yeah, me too.
iRunFar: Best of luck.
Kaspersen: Thank you.
iRunFar: Thank you.