A busy summer of ultramarathon racing rolled on for New England residents in the final full weekend of July, and that included performances in the Midwest, West, and East. The biggest day of all came from Cambridge resident Simon Guerard, whose quest for the Grand Slam of Ultrarunning took a big step forward with his top-10 finish at the Burning River 100 in Ohio. Several other races haven’t yet posted results, so the busy weekend produced some light reading in this week’s roundup.
Simon Guerard’s quest for the Grand Slam of Ultrarunning continued at the Burning River 100 on July 24-25 in Willoughby Hills, Ohio. The race is taking the place of the Vermont 100 in the Grand Slam lineup after VT100 was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, so the 35-year-old resident of Cambridge, Mass., pivoted and headed to Ohio.
Guerard had a strong run and finished ninth overall out of 170 finishers within the 30-hour time limit, completing the course in 20:18:42 for his second step in the Grand Slam. Arlen Glick, 28, of Ohio cruised to the overall win in 14:15:33, topping his closest competitor by nearly two hours. Lindsey Dwyer, 30, of Texas led the women and finished fifth overall in 17:36:59.
Five other Massachusetts residents joined Guerard in successfully completing the race. Alex Wirth Cauchon, 60, placed 41st overall in 24:09:41; Kathryn Campbell, 46, finished in 29:07:54; Juan Santos, 34; finished in 29:18:23; Leanne Sorrento, 57, finished in 29:42:39; and Kevin Koncilja, 32, followed in 29:42:53.
In the 50-mile race, Connecticut 26-year-old Johnny Shea raced his way onto the podium, finishing third overall in 7:49:38 and 25 minutes behind race winner Jeremy Pope, 35, of Ohio. Three more New England residents also were among the 199 finishers within the 15-hour time limit. Todd Falker, 39, of Providence, Mass., finished 33rd in 9:52:14; New Hampshire’s Sandy Reich, 42, placed 47th in 10:18:42; and David Huang, 37, of Cambridge, Mass., finished 135th in 12:45:56 in his tune-up for the Cuyamaca 100K in California in early October.
Nearly a half-dozen New England residents were among the finishers of one of the toughest 50Ks in the West at the Speedgoat 50K on Saturday, July 24, at the Snowbird Ski Resort in Utah. Speedgoat is known for its high altitude – the entire race takes place at 7,600 feet or more above sea level with much of it above 9,200 feet. Additionally, runners amass 11,800 feet of vertical gain while racing on the highly technical course. Ultimately, 227 runners finished the race within 13 ½ hours, highlighted by a blazing performance by 25-year-old Adam Peterman of Missoula, Mont., as he toppled the course record set by Jim Walmsley four years earlier.
Peterman hammered the course in a winning mark of 5:04:31, shaving 24 seconds off of Walmsley’s previous course record. The race runner-up, 29-year-old David Sinclair of Truckee, Calif. – a former Vermont resident and winner of the 40-mile race at the 2018 TARC Fells Winter Ultra – posted the 10th-best time in course history with his finish in 5:18:57. Ashley Brasovan, 30, of Golden, Colo., led the women’s field and finished 11th overall in 6:23:14.
Two Massachusetts residents and three from New Hampshire were also among the finishers. Graham Simon, 27, of Jamaica Plain, Mass., led the local contingent, finishing 53rd overall in 8:13:39. He was followed by 33-year-old Sean Berry of Portsmouth, N.H., who placed 79th in 8:51:34. Additionally, 27-year-old Jack Murrel of Jamaica Plain, Mass., finished in 10:11:49; Tobin Krieg, 31, of West Lebanon, N.H., finished in 10:46:36; and Stephen Carroll, 52, of Auburn, N.H., finished in 11:40:16.
MCW Westfield Ultra
As the ultramarathon racing scene attempts to move beyond the COVID-19 pandemic and races are resuming in earnest, Dane LeBlanc has followed suit. The 63-year-old resident of Littleton, Mass., has been a mainstay at ultra starting lines in the region for several years, and has already had a busy 2021 with successful finishes at the Traprock 50K in Connecticut in April, the Big A 50K in Maine and Manchester to Monadnock 55-miler in New Hampshire in May, followed by a 91.43-mile effort at the Forbidden Forest 30-Hour Ultra in Connecticut in June.
LeBlanc was the lone New England resident to travel to Westfield, N.J., for the inaugural MCW Westfield Ultra on Saturday, July 24. The event was a fundraiser for MissionCleanWater, a nonprofit organization that provides clean drinking water and sanitation to communities in need. Proceeds from the race benefit the organization’s effort to bring clean water to residents and students in eastern Uganda.
Runners had 24, 12, 9, 6, or 3 hours to complete a 0.8-mile loop course as many times as possible. LeBlanc entered the 6-hour race and logged 30.4 miles, good for seventh place. Rhiannon Schade, 31, of Bernardsville, N.J., led the way with 38.4 miles.
LeBlanc will look to build upon his effort when he races the Ragged 50K in New Hampshire in August, followed by the Oregon Cascades 100-miler in late August, Midstate Massive Ultra-Trail 100 in October, and Runamuck 50K in Vermont in October.
*Editor’s Note: Results are found on a variety of sites, including ultrasignup.com, UltraRunning Magazine, and official race websites. We do the best we can to find as many results as possible to report on and recognize the local ultrarunning community.