In this week’s What’s Up in Ultra, we hunt for Golden Tickets, explore the trails of the the Delmarva, run through California’s Daley Ranch and go on a quest to find Florida’s illusive skunk ape.
One of the two remaining Golden Ticket races takes place this weekend in Mayer, Arizona, at the Black Canyon 100k, where a deep field of ultra athletes will try and run their way into this year’s Western States 100. The top three female and top three male runners in the 100k distance will punch their tickets to States. You can tune in and follow the live action here. This should be a fast and highly competitive race with over 1,000 runners entered in the 100k event alone. This year’s Black Canyon event also offers a 100-mile challenge and a 60k race.
Mud or Blood?
Run through water or scrape your way through the briars? That’s the question presented by the race directors of the eighth annual Algonquin 50K. Starting in Pocomoke City, Maryland, the ALQ 50k showcases the best trails of the Delmarva Peninsula and winds through the Chesapeake Forest and Pocomoke State Forest. The historically fast race is a modified out-and-back course, with 95% of the race taking place on trails.
Back at the Ranch
Next we head west to the Daley Ranch, a 3,201-acre conservation area in Escondido, California, for the fifth running of The Ranch 50k. This challenging race consists of two 15-mile loops which combine for over 6,300 feet of elevation gain. Event organizers, Second Wind Trail Running, are proud sponsors of The Wounded Warrior Project.
For this week’s Wild Card Race (where we feature an event you may not be familiar with), we journey to Dade City, Florida, for the Skunk Ape’s Revenge 60k. The name race caught my attention for two reasons. One, a local brewery near my home makes a delicious red IPA called Skunkape (and I may have once experienced its revenge once or twice), and two, I was curious to learn more about a race named after Florida’s “Swamp Sasquatch.” It turns out the Skunk Ape Revenge 60k includes two 17-mile loops, and according to the race website, covers “almost all of the terrains Florida has to offer.” Good luck to this year’s runners and please post any photos you happen to capture of the illusive skunk ape!
Good luck to everyone racing this weekend and be sure to check out the UltraRunning Magazine calendar for more events on the horizon.