New This Week: Washington Wins and FKTs
Local runners take the White River 50; The Minnesota Voyageur is (mostly) back to normal; FKT attempts on both coasts
Justin Houck, 28, of Mercer Island, Washington, running the White River 50. Photo by Glenn Tachiyama.
At the Races
The White River 50 Mile (Crystal Mountain, Washington) quietly shaped up to be the weekend’s most competitive trail ultra, and Washington-based runners provided a home-state sweep for the iconic race that runs in the shadow of Mount Rainier.
Justin Houck of Mercer Island, Washington, bested a stout field that included Matt Flaherty of Bloomington, Indiana, and New Zealand's Vajin Armstrong. Houck covered the iconic course, which sits in the shadow of Mount Rainier, in six hours, 26 minutes and 44 seconds, the third-fastest time ever. Meanwhile, Jodee Adams-Moore of Bellingham, Washington, won a nail-biter in the women’s race, finishing just 31 seconds ahead of runner-up Aliza Lapierre of Williston, Vermont, in 7:59:58.
Back in the Midwest, you may recognize the Minnesota Voyageur 50-miler as the race that served as Scott Jurek’s introduction to ultras. Founded in 1981, the latest edition of the race was this Saturday. The course has partially returned to its latest original form after floods ravaged Duluth and the surrounding hills in 2012, rendering key sections of the course unusable the last two years.
Michael Borst running under the powerlines at the Minnesota Voyagueur 50. Photo by Zach Pierce.
Defending men’s champion Michael Borst of La Crosse, Wisconsin, came within reach of Jurek’s course record, winning in 6:53:20. (Jurek’s course record is 6:41, set on a different course.) Christi Nowak of St. Paul, Minnesota, won the women’s race in 8:36:20.