This is my race report for the Antelope Island Buffalo Run. This is a race that I started three eyars ago and it's grown every year. This year I had about 250 runners split between the three races. The 50 mile (starts at 6am), the 50K (starts at 8am), and a 25K (starts at 9am). As usual, a tremendous amount of work is involved in putting on the race, beginning about 6 months before race day and it's still not over even a week after.
Two new course records were set this year. Erik Storheim defended last year's 50 mile win with a new course record of 7:04, handily beating the 2nd place runner by over 30 minutes. Brad Mitchell also defended his 50K title by setting a new record of 3:49 for the distance. His win was only 4 minutes ahead of the previous record holder, Kevin Shilling.
Other race winners include Milada Copeland winning the women's 50 mile, Eve Davies winning the women's 50K, Billy Peterson winning the men's 25K, and Jennifer Koldewyn winning the women's 25K.
The weather cooperated again this year. It was very windy the night before and during the race start, but as the day progressed, the wind died down. The runners were treated to low 30's at the start warming to the upper 40's by the afternoon. One of these years, the weather is going to be really bad on race day.
A few things were done this year to improve the race, we added a portajohn to the 50 mile turnaround point, moved the Lone Tree aid station to a different location another .4 miles down the trail, and had canopies for each aid station for a little bit of shelter.
As usual, I had plenty of wonderful volunteers who gave up their day to help out at the race. Some of my volunteers have been with me all three years now. As with most races, this race would certainly not take place without the volunteers giving their time to help out.
The race went off without a hitch, there were the usual minor items, drop bags not getting back fast enough, a few 50K runners who elected to drop after 25K. We did have plenty of food and drink at all the aid stations. Running out of food/drink is always a big concern of mine during the race because it's very difficult to just run to the store to pick up stuff. The nearest store (WalMart) is well over 10 miles away.
As usual, I waas exhausted after the day's events and felt like I had run the race myself, but I also felt really good that another race was in the books and I can start planning for next year's race.
If you've never run a trail race or an ultra, give the Buffalo Run a try. Registration opens in mid October. This year's race filled to its limit in three weeks, howver, I'm in talks with the park to possibly expand the number of entries substantially. Check out the race website at www.buffalorun.org