South Africa’s Ryan Sandes has proven his credentials over the 100 mile distance by winning his debut race at this level, and with it recording the third fastest time in the history of the race, finishing in 16:46:56.
Sandes who spent the last month or so at altitude preparing for the race recently spoke with Ultra168 and discussed his thoughts ahead of the big dance. The Leadville 100, an out-and-back course is not regarded as one of the toughest 100 milers around in terms of elevation, but is known for it’s searing altitude, where the entire race is run between 9,200 feet and 12,600 feet, the majority is on forest trails with some mountain roads.
According to reports, Sandes took the lead a little over half-way into the race and presumably at the turnaround point, with Dylan Bowman second in 17:18:59 and Neal Gorman took third in 17:48:57.
Sandes was paced in the race by the Salomon entourage that is now a common feature at the major races across the globe. Kiwi Salomon International, Anna Frost, Salomon US team boss Adam Chase and Salomon Canada’s Phil Villeneuve were all on hand to help push Ryan through to the finish.
The win by Sandes sees a remarkable 1-2-3 for the Salomon team in the three 100 milers which feature as part of the US grand slam. First up, Kilian Jornet won the Western States 100miler, closely followed by Julien Chorier at the Hardrock 100 and now Sandes at Leadville.
In the women’s race, Lynette Clemons has just been crowned the 2011 Leadville Trail 100 women’s champion in 19:59:06.