by Helen Malmberg, Race Director
After a quick prayer to “Our Father and Forest Gump in the sky,” we proceeded down the yard to the start line. It was still dark and half the runners had their head lights on. The Halliburton Forest Ultras 100 Mile, 50 Mile and 50K races started at 6 a.m. (26k and 12k runners got to sleep in until 9 a.m.). Runners continued down a sandy road for the first 4.5 miles until hitting the first single track.
“Hali” has a nice combination of half single track and half old sandy road. It is a 25 mile out and back, which is repeated for the 100 milers. The race had a nice blend of weather – sun, rain for a few hours, and very windy through the night, but at dawn the sun rose again.
The men’s winning time for the 100 Mile was David Carroll in a time of 20:34 (David is author of the book “Ultra,” a children’s story of running 24 hours based on the Hailburton Forest Ultra course). Second was Jamieson Hatt in 20:58, with third place going to Dustin Beach in 22:01. Top woman was Amber Konikow (25:35) with Stephanie Bales (27:18) and Angie Hawley (27:53) rounding out the podium.
The fastest 50 miles was sub-8! Just barely, at 7:59, by Chris Wedeles, followed by Evan Koebel in 8:14 and Derek Merkley in 8:35. Top 50 Mile woman was Helen Francis in 10:18, chased by Kayley Gravelle (10:25) and Patricia Clune (10:41).
The first 50K finisher was familiar face John McAllister (4:37), with Ryan Saunders (4:40) close behind and Cory Gould in 4:53. Top woman, Jenny Bierworth, was next across the line in 5:01. This was a dominating win, with second and third place, Karen Batsford and Tara Bassili finishing in 5:43 and 5:59 respectively.
26km: MEN 1. Chris Percival (2:43), 2. David McCaw (3:05), 3. Shane Taylor (3:06). WOMEN 1. Jaime Bell (3:06), 2. Melanie Boultbee (3:07), 3. Sarah Halstead (3:08) – Wow, close race!
12km: Fastest two times were both women: 1. Gillian Fleming (0:59), 2. Shannon Eyre (1:02:53), 3. Danielle LeBlonc (1:18). MEN 1. Greg Gee (1:02:54), 2. Kevin Black (1:09), Dylan Hamilton (1:23)
Next year will be the 25th annual Halliburton Forest Ultra and plans are already under way for a great race. We hope you will join us.