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Welcome to my blog which I hope to develop with some interesting material on ultra running both on the trails and road including reports on races and interesting training runs, views on kit and equipment as well as anything else I find of interest. I love running for adventure, opportunity and well being. Enjoy!

Monday, 15 June 2009

Western States 100 (1)

Auburn, California, in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains. Less than two weeks to go until the 36th running of the famous Western States Endurance Run – 100 miles in one day.

Spending some time exploring the course, getting to know the trails so there is one less thing to worry about on race day; the big climb out of Squaw Valley ski resort, over the top into the Granite Chief Wilderness area, the high country ridges, the canyons, the famous Rucky Chucky river crossing, the fast downhill sections towards the end.

The view accross Granite Chief Wilderness area from Emigrant Pass, 4 miles into the race. Red Star ridge is on the far side.

The race will be an epic journey for each and every one of the 450 participants. We have all prepared long and hard for this race, most of us for nearly two years following the tragic cancellation of last year’s race due to forest fires. I for one have spent every day since Christmas thinking about the race, often my first thought of the day, always my last. It means so much to everyone who takes part, and when you set foot on the Western States trails you soon realise why. This is an incredible place to run. A place that inspires; the tree clad hillsides, the scent of the pine, the history of the trail, the wildlife, the crisp rays of sunshine breaking through the tree canopy.

It’s a tense time but after all the many hundreds of miles of training I feel ready for the race and excited about the prospect of running against some of the best in the world. The mens field is deeper than ever before, it will be a massive challenge trying to compete against all the US runners in their own back yard. But it is a challenge which motivates and excites me more than anything else, it is a once in a lifetime opportunity to be here, I must run strong and enjoy the experience, but above all show what I am capable of.
Myself and Simon Mtuy of Tanzania, on the trail between Red Star Ridge and Duncan Canyon.


Keith Hughes said...

Jez - enjoy it... You have done the work and now can enjoy the rewards of a great race .. Am sure a lot of the family will be tuned in in a couple of week - Cheers Keith

Nick said...

Jez, you've captured the atmosphere well. See you out there very soon. I hear it's a bit parky. It's nice and warm here.

Tim said...

After last year's disappointment I have all my fingers crossed for you Jez. Whatever happens on the day, I'm sure you'll do you best.

Be nice if you could beat a few locals though. ;-)

John Kynaston said...

Enjoy every minute of the experience Jez.

It sounds like you are well prepared and ready for the race.

I look ofrward to hearing all about it!

John K

Subversive Runner said...

Good luck, mate.

Thomas said...

Good Luck, Jez. You'll catch the yanks by surprise.

Marco Consani said...

Good luck Jez. What a fantastic place to run. I am sure you will have a great time and do very well.


Hippo said...

... next best thing to being there Jez

Rob Wood said...

Good luck Jez at WS100.
Should be an amazing event.
I ran with you for the first 3-4 hours at WHW in 2006 and had to drop out later. We then followed you up to your record breaking finish and we saw a very commanding performance. Did your relationship with North Face start from your encounter that day with Topher Gaylord?

Anonymous said...

I read about this race in Dean Karnazes, UltraMarathon Man. A truly entertaining read. The course sounds very challenging Jez, but i'm sure you can get round in a great time. Brilliant blog by the way, thoroughly enjoyed reading it. Even though im not running at present, your attention to detail makes me feel like im running beside you. Keep updating and have a great race. Pain is temporary, pride is forever!! Good luck.

Brian Mc said...

All the very best with it Jez, we're rooting for you. :-)

brendaontheRun said...

I attended the WS training camp in May and it was awesome (a fun way to spend a long weekend). It's a beautiful course - have fun out there!

Davie said...

As one of the new WHW family members can I wish you all the best for the race and hope it is worth the wait from last year.