The most competitive Wasatch 100 ever!
This year’s Wasatch 100 is lined up to be a burner. Not only will it be warm, ( at this point ) but the heat, dust, and dry overgrown conditions should make it an interesting race to watch, and more interesting to run up front. It’s a tough one to pick. The way I look at it there are 5 guys who could run away. More than likely it’ll be one of the 5 guys on the top of the odds list. It’s fair to say it may take a record to win this year. Kyle Skaggs is hanging on to the record at 19:35 and change. This could be the race that decides the “Speedgoat of the Year”.
The Men:Geoff Roes 7-2. Returning champion with a 20:01 to his credit on his first run here. He’s focused, he’s been sleeping high in Colorado for two weeks, and is now sleeping high here. He looks fit and ready to run sub 20….at least! Speedgoat Karl 4-1. This is my chance to shine right? Well it won’t be easy. I’ve been a little erratic in training because of a foot issue, but it’s gone now and if I can take my normal attitude…”100 miles isn’t really that far” all the way to the finish, I see a sub 20 in me easily. But I’m gonna have to nail it and run hard, cuz’ looking over my shoulder I may just see that light coming at me. This is my 100th ultra and shooting for the 50th ultra win of my career. Needless to say, I have some incentive. Any way you look at it, I’m in it to win it! Hal Koerner 9-5. Mr. Western schooled everyone at the Squaw Track Meet. This race is a little hillier and far more technical. If Hal runs smart and efficient, he may run away, but Geoff and Karl will be right on his tail. He likes to start fast, so watch for that. Geoff and I will probably be chasers from Francis Sheds. Josh Brimhall 5-1. Josh has what it takes to run 20 hours, he just has to tell himself that. He might beat us all at 50k, but this is 100. He’s run one great 100 at San Diego a few years back. He’s also got the heat issue down as he’s from the Vegas area and trains daily with 100 degree temps. Allen Bellshaw 6-1. Allen has run here a few times but hasn’t really nailed it yet. If he does, he’ll slip into the top 3, but this year that’ll have to be sub 21. From the Steamboat area, he’s been sleeping at altitude as well and should be ready to compete for the win, or at least a podium spot….if there was a podium. John Anderson 6-1. Another guy who can certainly run hard. He missed out on Bighorn and is probably hungry to run a good race. Another acclimatized guy too, so look out as he’s the sleeper to win it if we all crack ahead of him. Erik Storheim 7-1. Speedgoat 50k champ and no rookie on technical terrain. If he keeps his game-face on, he’ll run sub 22 and will compete for top 5. Jared Campbell 8-1. He ran real well at Hardrock and it’s time for him to throw one down at Wasatch. If he runs like he does on our occasional training runs, I’d put him top 5 easy. Topher Gaylord 9-1. Former Alta-Snowbird Local who knows the course well and is one of those guys who is often a mystery. He’ll be under 23 for sure, but could also move up if he uses his supreme experience. He’s coming off of UTMB, so may be a bit tired. Corbin Talley 12-1. Wasatch Running Center’s top dog, Corbin is a SLC local and a fast road marathoner ( 2:20 range ). He was in the top 5 a few years back when Roch Horton and I passed him sitting on a rock after Brighton. Chances are he won’t be sitting on a rock this time. He’s got great speed but needs to keep his stomach happy. Brandon Sybrowsky 14-1. If Brandon is in good race shape, he’s easily in top 5. He’s run this thing over 10 times and could go blindfolded if he wanted to. I hope he’s up front with us so we can talk Hong Kong and the Trailwalker 100k experience we had a few years back in 2002 and 2004.
That’s it for the men. Others to watch for a sub 24 finish: Jay Aldous, David Hayes, Dave Hunt, Scott Kunz and a few others I’ve probably missed.
Always a little easier to pick, but this year we have 6 women that could win it. Some faster and more experienced than others, but nonetheless it’ll be competitive to the end.Betsy Nye 4-1. We have to give her the nod here as she’s won this thing a bunch of times. She does not hold the record but will run it textbook style. And with Roch Horton at her side trying to get her that silly Cheetah Buckle she’s got a chance at breaking 24. Around 24 hours should win it. Mandy Hosford 5-1. Mandy brings a great Speedgoat 50k run to the table, but lacks some 100 mile experience. If she nails it though, she’ll surprise lots of folks and run away. She’s got speed, a good coach and determination to go for it. Sarah Evans 6-1. Sarah also has a good coach 🙂 and if she sticks with a good race strategy, she should run strong to the finish. She has to stay smart though, and not let others dictate her race. She’s as fast as the other two ahead of her if she wants to be. Prudence L’Heureux 8-1. I’ve picked Prudence many times to run up front, but she hasn’t really done it yet. I’m thinking this may be her time to shine. She’s got it in her if she nails it. Jane Larkindale 9-1. Jane ran second at the San Diego 100 in June with a solid 21:40ish time. This is her chance to run with the top ladies and prove she’s one to reckon with. The “sleeper” in my book. Darla Askew 10-1. She’s got a veteran pacer ( Krissy Moehl ). If Krissy can keep her moving well later in the race, like she does, she’ll move up late and surprise a few.
That’s the ladies, and there are probably a few I missed, but this time I think I have it right!
Don’t forget to keep tuning in as I am working on a project for next year…once again. But it’s a secret for now, the details are coming soon.
For those out there who can help the needy. Consider donating a few bucks for a good cause. A client of mine, Kieth Kohler, is running the North Country 50 mile run in a few weeks. This charity helps an orphanage in Sri Lanka, a place where real cash is needed to help save these kids’ lives. Check out the website here, and let ultrarunning assist the kids in need!
On another good note, Erik Skaggs is now turning the corner and improving, check out the good words at Rogue Valley Runners.
And don’t forget to click the “Goatman” in the upper right corner for deals at Backcountry.com. It’s time to gear up for winter soon, as another 700″ is ready to fall on the mighty Wasatch Front.