The big news this month came from the Canadian Trail & Mountain Running Association. CTMRA informed us that for the first time ever the Canadian Mountain Running Championships would be held in Quebec this year
This is exciting news for the east as it will allow an interesting crop of runners to attempt to crown them selves champion at one of the most successful and demanding races in the country.
XTRAIL Asics Sutton has quickly become a proving ground for the elite runners of the east and now for a select few Canadians as well. The event, expertly directed by Nicolas Taillefer, will be held on June 1st and will welcome 80+ elite athletes.
After finishing one of the hardest winter ultras in the world Derrick Spafford penned a moving race report about his run at the Yukon Arctic Ultra on his blog at Spafford Health & Adventure. Spafford has long been a hero of mine and reading his report resonated deeply with me. The challenges he faces while stepping out into the unknown is a lesson in determination and grit.
As bad as I felt after my bivy, it never really got any worse. I felt I reached as low as I could, and there was something about that knowledge that was comforting. I continued trying to sneak some food into my upset stomach. I also had to stop regularly and melt snow for drinking water, which is something that I wouldn’t have needed to do had things been going well.
To read the rest of his excellent race report, please follow this LINK.
A little further south in Washington, 24 year old Jonathan Heinz took fourth overall at the always competitive Orcas Island 50km. Heinz, who hails from Calgary, AB challenged for the top positions most of the day and held on to finish 4th place. Coming off a win a week earlier at the Orcas Island 25 km, Heinz will surely be an athlete to follow in the years to come. Not to be outdone Canadians Stacie Carrigan of Kelowna, BC and Lisa Polizzi of Vancouver, BC took 3rd and 4th place respectively in the overall female category.
Canadians once again dominated the Trail Runner Magazine Trophy Series in all categories in 2012 with many of the top podium winners hailing from the great white north. Age division winners in the non-ultra categories was Mike Ticker (30-39), Kelly Rupoli (40-49) and Wanda Ferguson (50+). In the Ultra division, Canadians took 3 of the possible 6 podium spots in the combined categories of male and female. Winning the women’s division was Lisa Van Wolde (38) of Innisfil, ON. Van Wolde raced 6 races in the series and took the win with solid efforts at Haliburton and Sulphur Springs ultramarathons. The Ultra division had the ageless Glen Redpath of New York, NY (Canadian citizen) capturing second overall in the standings with only 4 races! Oleg Tabelev of Calgary took the 3rd overall spot running 3 of the series races. Congrats to all the athletes that competed in the Trophy Series. If you want to learn more about the series and the races you can follow the this LINK to the Trail Runner website for more details.
Gear Review: Columbia Trail Drier Windbreaker
Living in Kingston, Ontario forces me to be very picky about my choices of what to wear when I head out for a run. The reason is because the weather here is somewhat sketchy. I often look for jackets that can do a bit of everything and still allow me to push my effort and not feel like I am taking a bath. This is where the Trail Drier Windbreaker by Columbia comes in handy.
This ultra-lightweight jacket has a myriad of technologies to help make it one of the most versatile jackets I have test this year. The fabric is Omni-Wick EVAP, which to put in basic terms is that it is a wind-stopping ripstop material with a water-repellent coating. The other part of this technology is that the fabric remains highly breathable and help transport sweat away from the body.
I can attest to the effectiveness of this fabric as during a two night test of the coat it did an exceptional job keeping me dry and still allowing most of the sweat vapor out.
Being lightweight, the jacket can be stored when not in use, so its no hassle to have during longer outings on the trail incase the weather turns.
Some of the other features I really liked was the slightly oversized hoody, the three pocket design (one chest pocket and two hand pockets) as well as adjustable hem to keep the cool wind at bay.
Overall Columbia’s Trail Drier WIndbreaker is a do it all jacket that won’t disappoint you when it counts, on the trail.