Leadville, Colorado, August 18. Thomas Lorblanchet of Clermont-Ferrand, France won the 30th annual Leadville Trail 100.
Lorblanchet led for much of the first half of the race before Anton Krupicka caught him on the climb to Hope Pass, at 12,600 feet the highest point on the course. Krupicka arrived at the Winfield Aid Station (mile 50) within a few minutes of course record pace, with Lorblanchet hot on his heels. Krupicka, running only his second race after more than a year off dealing with a broken leg and a shin injury, pulled ahead to a 10-minute lead by the Twin Lakes Aid Station at mile 60.5. But the early pace would prove too much, and the steady Lorblanchet caught him before the Fish Hatchery Aid Station at mile 76. Krupicka, who after the race described his last 30 miles as “ugly, running on blown quads”, hung on gamely to finish but faded to fourth.
Tina Lewis, who earlier in the year won the Miwok 100K, passed Liza Howard at about mile 70 and pulled away for the women’s win. Howard held off Ashley Nordell for second, and early leader Aliza Lapierre finished fourth.
Lorblanchet became the second consecutive overseas runner to win Leadville after South African Ryan Sandes won in 2011. In a race often dominated by runners who live at elevation, he’s also the second consecutive sea level runner to win in as many years. Clermont-Ferrand, perhaps best known as the world headquarters for Michelin Tires, is located in the Auvergne region in central France.
Bill Finkbeiner of Auburn, California crossed the finish line in 29:17, recording his 29th consecutive finish. Runners were treated to a good weather day, with most sunny conditions and a typically chilly start (34F), warming to 70F by afternoon.
Of the 795 starters, 358 finished within the 30 hour time limit.
1. Thomas Lorblanchet, 32, Clermont-Ferrand, France, 16:29:27
2. Zeke Tiernan, 36, Carbondale, CO, 16:29:27
3. Nick Clark, 38, Fort Collins, CO, 17:11:15
4. Anton Krupicka, 28, Boulder, CO, 17:21:08
5. Jay Aldous, 51, Salt Lake City, UT, 18:42:42
1. Tina Lewis, 39, Boulder, CO, 19:33:44
2. Liza Howard, 39, San Antonio, TX, 20:44:08
3. Ashley Nordell, 32, Sisters, OR, 20:47:58
4. Aliza Lapierre, 32, Williston, VT, 21:14:32
5. Darcy Africa, 37, Boulder, CO, 23:20:06