With a fat carrot for the winner of this year’s innaugural “Run Rabbit Run 100“, we would assume the field would be deep with talent. Yup, it’s got talent. No doubt the winning time will be swift, and it’ll be competitive up front all the way around the mountain town of Steamboat, Colorado.
I’ve been around almost all of the course now, and I’ll say that it’s gonna be pretty fast. Most of the trails are very runner friendly, actually “biker” friendly. This only means one thing….they are (in general) not that steep. The climbs are long and gradual,the downhills are the same. It’s a runners course….a good route for lots of carnage and a few super fast times.
I really feel it’s a bit of a shame more US runners aren’t here for this first year race. With $10,000 bucks going to the winner, and 5 -deep in the money, it was a no-brainer in my mind. My predictions below:
1. Timmy Olson. Gotta pick Tim with the season he’s had so far. He’s hands down the favorite with his past races this season, his results show he can run with anyone. With real money on the line, the rest of us are gonna follow along closely and see if he handles the pressure. He seemed pretty calm yesterday hanging out at Rabbit Ears Pass with his little man. He’s fit and ready and has been in Steamboat for two weeks. Will he pull it off and keep a chance at UROY in the mix…..He’s gonna need to cuz’ Morton just crushed Jurek’s record.
2. Mike Wolfe. He’s the only guy that knows what it feels like to take home a $10,000 check (NF50 last year). I’m sure he’s gonna want another. His season has not been typical of the wolfeman, but that tells me…..he’s probably hungrier than any wolfe in the wild. He’ll be right there all day.
3. Jason Schlarb. He already asked me about changing up his sleep patterns before the early afternoon start. So, needless to say, he’s thinking about this one pretty intensely, his performances this year have been stellar. We know he’s got speed, we know he’s fast…..the only thing he lacks is alot of 100 mile experience, but if he pulls it together, he’ll run up front as long as possible and give himself a chance. He could be the “sleeper” to upset everyone.
4. Dylan Bowman… Pretty much the same deal as Jason above. He’s fast, has run very well all year, including Western where I believe he was 7th. And, it’s a runners course. He’s a runner. He’ll do well if he holds together.
5-6. Arnulfo Quimare, and Miquel Lara. We know Arnulfo from that book that some guy wrote. Miquel, we know nothing except what Bryon at Irunfar mentioned. I’m looking at one of our Tarahumara boys to show up here. If there are any guys I’d hope to pay off, it would be them. Pinole’ anyone?
7. Speedgoat Karl. I”m getting older, that’s true, but in reality, we don’t need to run fast, we only need to run all night. I”m gonna run all night and hope to hit the podium. Will I? Good question. I am pretty fit and haven’t raced since Hardrock. My neuritis is doing pretty well. Although not 100%,it should not affect me. I hope to run top 5 and pay for some tile and paint.
8-9. Jason Loutit and Dave James. Really hard to say here. I expect Jason and Dave James to go out fast. Both typically, are not afraid of the early fast miles. We’ll see if they hang on. It is a runners course as I mentioned before, both these guys can motor
10, 11,12. Duncan Callahan, Nick Pedatella, and John Anderson. Look for all three of these guys along with me to be close all day. Not sure on Andersons’s fitness, but he’s a fast guy when he’s fit. Pedatella is a sneaky fast guy and very rarely has a bad day. Duncan Callahan….same gig, he always runs strong. All three don’t have the overall speed of the front runners, but will pick up any carnage late in the run. Hopefully the carnage is not me.
13. Juan Carlos Sagastume from Guatamala. I have no freakin’ idea, but he’s 40…..so he’s in the mix with me for the “over the hill” award of $1000.
I expect these 13 to be the mens race.
And the ladies:
1. Lizzy Hawker. UTMB or not (where she ran 5th overall) Yup 5th. She is hands down the favorite. But will she be tired? She’s flying in two days before the event, so sleep and jetlag could play a factor. The late start time probably works in her favor, so we’ll see. She goes out hard and fast, it’s likely she’ll be leading early. If she feels good, the flight was worth it.
2. Nikki Kimball. She’s been training for it, is ready and would just love to go home with 10k. Her hands are now full, hopefully she’ll deal with the pressure of Lizzy taking off early and pick up her carnage late. Nikki is as strong as they come.
3. Sandy Nypaver. Sandy comes in with the most experience of the two below,so I gave here the nod to make top 3. She excels in the mountians well and should be accustomed to altitude well.
4. Aliza Lapierre probably has the best resume behind Hawker and Kimball, but from Vermont, doesn’t have the altitude. If it doesn’t affect her, she’ll likely be on the podium. She’s posted fast times, but mostly on smooth, flatter routes….so we’ll see.
5. Ashley Arnold should also be in the mix for top 5 and a few extra bucks. Not the level of Nikki and Lizzy, but podium worthy for sure.
6. Michelle Suszek is high on the “ultrasignup” list,, but lacks 100 mile experience. Hard to give her better than 6th. She posted fast time in short races.
7. Melanie Fryar, also coming from low altitude, fast but unsure of how it’ll affect her.
8. Rhonda Claridge from the high town of Ophir, Colorado won’t hurt her chances.
9. Harvey in the ditch is picking Jenny Pierce, how smart is that wabbit anyway?….probably pretty smart.
10. Leila Degrave….will round out top 10.
That’s all I got for now, but also go over to Irunfar and check out Bryon’s post on his picks and I’m sure we’ll see some more interviews once the athletes come to town. Bryon will also be covering the race live as always, so make sure you tune in for that.
Sure wish there was more fast guys and gals…..but hey, it’s the first year and a prize purse of $40,000, how can I complain? Big thanks to Fred Abramowitz and Paul Sachs for putting this together. It’s gonna be exciting to be running whether I win money or not.
Time to chase a carrot