HURT 100 pushes aside scary conditions, crowns winners Fuchs and Albrecht

As the 2020 HURT 100 approached, things felt … ominous. The annual Honolulu event is typically set in paradise, but this year’s recent weather in paradise has been less than ideal. On January 12, organizers for the race posted a warning:

“Recent high winds and heavy rains may result in poor trail conditions. While we are hopeful that conditions will improve leading up to the event, January weather on O’ahu is very unpredictable … Currently, the HURT course is mired in water, mud, and fallen trees.”

Not exactly music to a runner’s ears. But ultimately, the course was cleared (mostly), the weather cooperated, and the 20+ year-old iconic ultramarathon once again did not disappoint.

The big winner was Trevor Fuchs, who finished muddied and exhausted, but with a big smile on his face. The Ogden, Utah native ran his 100 miles in a time of 22:04:49, more than a half hour ahead of his closest competitor.

“When I first started running, I would have never guessed the places it would take me,” Fuchs wrote on his Instagram a few days before the race, looking forward to a big 2020 that has since started out on the best foot imaginable. “I would have never guessed the friendships I would make or the community that would become such a vital part of my life. I would have never guessed the opportunities that running would present. I am so incredibly grateful, honored, and stoked beyond measure to share that I have joined the @salomonrunning U.S. team. This coming year will have no shortage of adventure with Hardrock and UTMB in the summer. But in a few days, I get to start this thing off with a bang in Hawaii at the HURT 100 as a Salomon athlete.”

Featuring nearly 25,000 feet of vertical ascent, completing this race in the rainforests of Honolulu is anything but a given. Named for the Hawaii Ultra Running Team (HURT), a group of eccentric athletes who trained together on Maui’s jungle-covered mountains, the race was invented when they got sick of traveling all the way to the mainland to find competition. Known for its roots-heavy trails and humid temperatures, it has grown into one of the most beloved 100-milers in the ultra-running community.

On the women’s side, local favorite Anna Albrecht led the pack. The Honolulu native finished 15th overall, with a time of 28:55:50. She also finished more than 3 hours ahead of the second-place women’s participant.

About a week before her run, Albrecht posted a picture of herself kissing the famous sign that serves as a ritual for those who finish the HURT. “I’m so excited and nervous for this journey. It’s been the CRAZIEST ride since my name was drawn in August,” she wrote on Instagram. “This is going to be the hardest race of my life but I’m so ready to go to battle with it. Bring on the blisters, tears, sweaty cast, nerve pain, and bliss. Can’t wait to dance in the jungle for a couple days with all my crazy friends.”

Dance, she did – and she danced well enough to lead the pack. Here’s the women’s Top 10:

1. Anna Albrecht (Honolulu, Hawaii): 28:55:50

2. Denise Bourassa (Lakewood, Colorado): 32:03:50

3. Suzanna Bon (Sonoma, California): 32:19:46

4. Michiko Uchiyama (Shizuoka, Japan): 32:46:58

5. Chelsey Topping (Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada): 33:01:15

6. Jody Sanborn (Banner, Wyoming): 33:24:17

7. Jessica Hardy (Dana Point, California): 33:39:01

8. Hannah Perry (Vancouver, Canada): 33:54:36

9. Candice Burt (Leavenworth, Washington): 33:56:46

10. Mayuko Floyd (San Diego, California): 34:39:10

Men’s Top Ten:

1. Trevor Fuchs (Ogden, Utah): 22:04:49

2. Nate Jaqua (Eugene, Oregon): 22:37:34

3. Brandon Stapanowich (Colorado Springs, CO): 23:28:07

4. Tomokazu Ihara (Takao, Japan): 23:57:20

5. Takeshi Noda (Yokohama, Japan): 24:54:38

6. Daniel List (Santa Maria, California): 26:01:05

7. Will Jones IV (Bellingham, Washington): 26:24:47

8. Tim McDononough (St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada): 26:48:05

9. Shin Iwatare (Suginami, Japan): 27:05:43

10. Sergio Florian (Kaaawa, Hawaii): 27:07:26

Contrasted with the final results, the halfway leaders show that Fuchs, Stapanowich, Jaqua and Ihara were in the driver’s seat for pretty much the entirety of the HURT 100. Also worth noting is the return of Tracy Garneau, who set the course record in 2010. Now 50 years old, Garneau unfortunately was unable to finish.


Weekend Recap Vibram Hong Kong 100k and HURT100

Saturday, January 18th at 8am (local time) saw an unbelievable field of runners compete in the Vibram Hong Kong 100k to kick off the 2019 Ultra-Trail World Tour. Contestants tackled a 5300m of elevation on a 103.6km course spanning dirt and paved trails, stairs, beaches, forests, and mountains.

Photo Credit: Vibram Hong Kong

Vibram Hong Kong 100k Men’s Race

Conditions were excellent on the morning of the race, with light cloud cover and a pleasant breeze. Though Jing Liang set out to an early lead, with Tom Evans and Long-Fei Yan close behind, it was Jiasheng Shen who crossed the finish first at 10:22:45. Liang Jing took second at 10:35:50, and Zhenlong Zhang followed in third.

Photo Credit: Vibram Hong Kong

The uncomplicated results from the men’s field come as a welcome relief to racing fans, after last year’s finish was marred by a disqualification on Jing Liang’s record setting first place time of 9:28. The win fell to the second runner to finish, Min Qi, only seconds behind at the 9:28 mark himself.

Photo Credit: Vibram Hong Kong

Vibram Hong Kong 100k Women’s Race

From the women’s field, Yangchun Lu finished first, in 11:43:20. Fuzhao Xiang followed at 12:17:32, and Guangmei Yang took third in 12:43. The course record of 10:40, set by last year’s women’s winner, Yao Miao, was not seriously threatened.

It’s no surprise that times rose across the board after changes were made this year to increase the difficulty and distance of the course.

Vibram Hong Kong

Photo Credit: Vibram Hong Kong

With UTWT 2019 officially up and running, there’s a whole lot of great racing coming up. Check the schedule below to see what’s on the horizon, and check back often for constant coverage of the biggest wins, best times, and most shocking DNFs.

132 Endure the HURT100

On Saturday, January 19th, 132 runners took on 100 miles of punishing forest trail in one of January’s most anticipated racing events: The Hawaiian Ultra Running Team’s Trail 100-Mile Endurance Run, or the HURT100.

Photo Credit: HURT100

The course, maintained by the State of Hawai’s  Department of Land and Natural Resources, Division of Forestry and Wildlife’s Na Ala Hele program, runs 5-laps and 100 miles of semi-tropical rain forest, primarily on narrow single-track packed dirt paths in the mountains above Honolulu, and features 24,500 feet of cumulative elevation gain.

This year Nate Jaqua finished in first with a time of 22:37:54. Trevor Fuchs finished in second at 23:24:32, and top returning competitor Masazumi Fujioka took third in 23:38:57, improving on the 24:03:34 which landed him 3rd in 2018. No runner seriously challenged Gary Robbins’s 2013 course record of 19:35:00.

First in the women’s field was top returning competitor Sabrina Stanley. She improved on her 2018 3rd place time of 29:45:04, finishing at 28:28:06. Solange Saxby’s 29:07:16 followed, and Anna Albrecht’s 29:54:55 was good for 3rd. No runner faired as well as 2018 women’s leader Darcy Piceu, whose 25:48:27 was the third best women’s time in course history.

If you want to learn more about the Hurt100, check out “Rooted: The Story of Hurt” for a fun view on the history of the Hawaiian Ultra Running Team and the evolution of the HURT100.

SCHEDULE – MAYBE USE THE OFFICIAL IMAGE INSTEAD? https://www.ultratrail-worldtour.com/races-all/races/

January, 19th, 2019 – Vibram® Hong Kong 100 – 100 km – Hong Kong, China
February, 6th-10th 2019 – Tarawera Ultramarathon – 102 km – Rotorua, New Zealand
February, 20th-24th 2019 – Transgrancanaria HG – 125 km – Gran Canaria, Spain
April, 5th-15th 2019 – Marathon des Sables – +/- 250 km – Sahara, Morocco
April, 12th-14th 2019 – 100 Miles of Istria – 100 miles – Umag, Croatia
April, 12th-13th 2019 – Patagonia Run – 160 km – San Martin de Los Andes, Argentina
April, 27th 2019 – Madeira Island Ultra-Trail® – 115 km – Funchal, Portugal
April, 26th-28th 2019 Ultra-Trail® Mount Fuji – 170 km – Fujisan, Japan
April 13th, 2019 – Penyagolosa Trails HG – 109 km – Castellon, Spain
May, 16th-19th 2019 – Ultra-Trail Australia – 100 km – Katoomba, Australia
June, 15th – mozart100® – 105 km – Salzburg, Austria
June 28th-30th 2019 – La Sportiva Lavaredo Ultra Trail – 119 km – Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italia
June, 29th-30th 2019 – The Western States 100 Mile Endurance Run – 100 miles – California, United States
July, 19th-21st 2019 – Eiger Ultra-Trail® – 101 km – Grindelwald, Switzerland
August, 28th 2019 – TDS® – 119 km – Courmayeur-Chamonix, Italy – France
Aug, 30th 2019 – CCC® – 101 km -Courmayeur-Chamonix, Italy – Switzerland – France
Aug, 30th 2019 – UTMB® – 170 km – Chamonix, France – Italy – Switzerland
September, 6th- 7th-8th 2019 – Harricana Ultra-Trail® – 125 km – La Malbaie, Canada
October, 20th 2018 – Salomon® Cappadocia Ultra-Trail® – 119 km – Urgup, Turkey
November, 2nd-3rd 2019 – Javelina Jundred 100 miles – Arizona, United States
November, 30th 2019 Ultra-Trail Cape Town® – 100 km – Cape Town, South Africa