Victoria is rather greedy right now. This week sees the second big miler in just eight days in the State with the running of the Alpine Challenge, taking in a plethora of distances from 36kms right up to the 100 miler. For the purposes of the review today we’re going to feature the 100 miler and the 100km events.
Build it and they will come apparently? Well after over 150 people plied their wares at GSER last week, the Alpine Challenge also sees record numbers in its events too. As more and more people complete the classic 100km distance, it’s inevitable they’re going to look for bigger challenges and a miler in the Victorian Alps is certainly a great way to test those wares.
We’ll start with the big one, the Alpine Challenge 100 miler and take you through some of the contenders for this one.
In the ladies race, perhaps the strongest runner in the field is Hayley Teale who finished an excellent third at the Blackall 100 recently. She’s also won the Hubert 100km and Razorback 64km trail races this year too.
Jacquie Hansen has been solid over the years in Victorian Alps racing. This year she was second at the Razorback 64km trail race as well as fourth (2016) and second (2015) and first (2014) in this race over the 100km distance.
Jordan Maki-Richards looks a strong contender having finished fourth at the Mount Solitary ultra earlier this year. In 2016 she won the Orcas Island 100 Mile race as well as finishing sixth at the Cascade Crest Classic 100 Mile race.
Look out too for Viv Johnston who grabbed second at the Hume and Hovell ultra a few weeks ago too.
In the men’s race, Andrew Hough is perhaps the biggest name racing in terms of previous results. This year he’s won the You Yangs 100 miler as well as the Yurrebilla 56km trail ultra too. He also put in a solid run at UTA, finishing just outside the top 20 in a time of 11:05.
Victorian lads in Dave Eadie and Dan Beard are in with a shout. The latter, Mr. Beard is a serial racer on the Victorian ultra running scene, having this year claimed a win at the Wilsons Promontory 100 km as well as second place at the Razorback 64km trail race too. Dan is back at Alpine to defend the crown he won last year in a time of 24:20.
Dave Eadie’s another big personality on the Victorian racing scene. Not racing quite as much in recent years as previously, Dave’s had some a good result at the Surf Coast Century this year, running fifth. Dave’s been mainly running the flatter faster races in recent years, so it will be interesting to see his shift over to the bigger mountain race this weekend.
Dej Jamieson from South Australia is looking good this year with a win at the Heysen 105km, along with third at the Hubert 50km and fourth at the You Yangs 100 miler.
Italian David Giannelli looks to be a good overseas contender with a series of pretty impressive results elsewhere in the world. This includes a fourth place at the TNF Thailand 100km, along with a win at the Doi Chang 65km Mountain Run, also in Thailand. A couple of years also, he was also fifth at the Eiger Trail 51km race.
Watch out too for Luke Glapa, eighth at the Hounslow Classic 64km and third at the Razorback 64km run too earlier this year. He also put in a solid performance at UTA in 2017 too, running 11:43. Also keep an eye on Daniel Oehm who won the 100km race here last year and finished eleventh at the Hounslow Classic in 2017 too.
Alpine Challenge 100km
Perhaps the lead name on the list is Nicole Paton, who’s had a series of wins around the local Victorian ultra scene this year, including the Halloween Howler 50km, the You Yangs 100 km, the Macedon Ranges 50k trail run and the Wilsons Promontory 100 km. She’s also grabbed second place at the Surf Coast Century and Maroondah Dam Trail Run.
Oowan Davies looks strong for the men’s title. He’s had great results this year at Yurrebilla Trail 56km Ultra (third), Macedon Ranges 50k trail ultra (second) and the Razorback 64 km Run (first).
Simon Neale’s had a solid year with a win at the Surf Coast 50km, along with third at Maroondah Dam and fifth at the Berry Long Run. A bit of a flatlander in terms of recent racing, but Robert Middleton is worth a punt, having secured sixth at C2K last year, along with second at the Caboolture Historical Village 24h and a win at the Wild Horse Criterium 50 Miler.
Best of luck to everyone running this weekend.