OK, with Andrew off to run in the Western States 100 miler next Saturday, needless to say, the rest of Ultra168 is very excited for him. He flew off today (hopefully avoiding the ash cloud, which delayed my trip back from NZ earlier this week), and should be somewhere over Fiji right now.
Bryon Powell, one of the leading trail writers over the US (and competitor too), has got the ball rolling with a predictions article where people can choose their top eight runners in both the men’s and women’s events. I must admit to not being overly au fait with the leading ladies in the 100 mile scene, suffice to say that I do hope Australia’s Beth Cardelli can do us proud. She has a real chance of a podium we believe and could cause a flew shocked glances when she runs over the finish line.
In the men’s, I’m putting all my cookies on a certain Kilian Journet. Most yanks don’t rate him (no surprise), but I think he’ll kill it this year. When he visited Australia, a few of us were lucky enough to speak with him and it’s patently clear from his attitude that this year is all about Western States. This is a guy who hates losing. He is a born winner and he made some mistakes last year that he’s keen to rectify.
As for the other placings, as a Brit, I think Jez Bragg and Ian Sharman are serious contenders for top 5 placings. Ian ran the race of his life at the Rocky Raccoon 100 miler, setting one of the quickest 100 mile trail times ever recorded (12hr 44mins), and Jez is a very consistent performer too. Of course, last but not least will be the US contingent, Geoff Roes, Andy Jones-Wilkins, Hal Koerner and Dave Mackey are also up there with quite a few others too – it’s going to be an absolute dog-fight for top 10 placings this year.
If you’re interested in putting some predictions in, click here to read Bryon’s article and how to enter.
4 thoughts on “Western States mania – The irunfar.com predictions”
Dan, I thought Beth had been injured and wouldn’t be racing? – all out anyway?
Can you give us some more inforation regarding Andrew. How his training has been, what are his goals etc. Is it really a possibility he could go top 10? He would have to go sub 18 hours for that wouldn’t he?
As far as I know, Beth is all set and ready to go. I haven’t spoken to her personally, but from what I understand she’s running well.
As for Andrew, he’s in tip top shape and ready to give it 100%. I’ll be honest in that I really don’t know what his splits are, he keeps that pretty guarded, but having trained with him the last 4 months, I’ve never seen him in better shape. Some of the training runs we’ve done, he’s left us for dead. For a top 10 finish, it has to be 18 hours or less yes, especially given the field that’s running this year. I think Kilian will win in the low 15’s.
It’s a really tough one to call too, as Andrew’s not seen the course either, it’s not like GNW where he knows it like the back of his hand and knows who his competition is. There’s a lot of unknowns.
Sticking my neck out and based on my own personal opinion, I think he’s capable of a top 20 finish, which would be outstanding.
Dont forget Nick Clark is a Brit too. He ran 16 hours for 4th last year in his rookie run.
Andrew will just need to run his own race and, if he paces well, will finish well up the ladder when some of the favourites blow up chasing Jornet.
Yep, oversight on my part Charlie. Nick Clarke is indeed in with a great shot. In fact here’s my top five, hugely swayed by my biased towards the Queen and country :):
Vizey will run his own race, I gave him the pep talk last night. What more could he want from a double podium’ing 6ft track Beer Better? 🙂