Friday, 20 January 2012
Rocky Raccoon preparation and all things UTMB
Today the lottery for the 103-mile Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc and the other related races posted results and there's less of the top male North American talent going over (only just), probably due to so many running Hardrock 100 and Run Rabbit Run 100, although the women seem to be crossing the pond with a strong group to go for that podium. Will be interesting to see how all these runners do against the locals and Brits (the ones who still live in Europe).
Here's a list of notable North American residents running UTMB and I apologize for missing names - this is from a quick scan on the UTMB website based on my own ability to recognize names.
I'll be running the shorter Courmayeur-Champex-Chamonix (CCC) 61-miler to not overload my season and to still enjoy the fun of the whole set of events. Plenty of friends will be out there from England so I'm looking forward to it and just hope there's a bit more sun than last year.
In the build up to UTMB, I'm lucky enough to have persuaded Krissy Moehl (the female course record holder, amongst other accolades) to join the All-Star Running team and we'll be hosting a UTMB training camp around the entire UTMB route from 26th May to 2nd June. Should be a great experience for everyone involved as we cover the 103 miles over five days and get to hang out in Chamonix too. More details here.
But right now my focus is on Rocky Raccoon 100 and seeing if that 12:44 course record is breakable. I've had some time off over Christmas and since then have been working on my speed, since that's the thing that's dropped off over the past year. Plenty of half marathons on the treadmill including a few under my best road time, so these should pay off as I look forward to the final two weeks of tapering. I chat about it more in the Ultrarunner Podcast show that is out today on itunes and here.
This is about the point last year when the Rocky Raccoon entrants list exploded with fast 100-mile racers, but it doesn't look like it'll happen again. At the least I know Karl Meltzer and Oswaldo Lopez (Badwater winner last year) will be really pushing the pace and running amazing times and Liza Howard will beat any of the men who can't run sub-15 hours.