January 19th, 2019
KM100 - One Race Director's Celebration
Sunday June 8th, 2008
Tim (Timo") Yanacheck
Timo here. The story of the 2008 Kettle Moraine 100 Endurances Runs has now been written in the big gold book of ultramarathoning. The rain hit us hard this weekend, but the tornadoes, lightning and falling trees all missed. Enough about that, though. I'll let others write about the weather. I say, what a great day it was for a trail race. Ultramarathoners are tough - they are the toughest of all athletes.
Congratulations to those who showed up, to those who ran at least part of the way, to those who met their personal distance goals, to those who completed the 100-kilometers and 100-mile races, and to our four champions.
And to our volunteers who stayed at their posts all day and all night to make the completion of our race possible, thank you, thank you, thank you.
And to my friend and co-race director Jason Dorgan (The Man Who Ran The Entire Ice Age Trail, 1,079 miles, in just 22 days), well, words can't describe how happy I am to do this race with you every year. Seven glorious years and still looking forward to the next.
In addition to our faithful Midwestern runners, the Kettle Moraine 100 attracted new friends from all over the country again this year. And I'd like to give a special welcome to Veronica Black who came all the way from Melbourne, Australia, to try her first 100-mile race.
In the 100-miles event, ultramarathon newcomer Joel Eckberg, 31, of Downers Grove, Illinois, ran his first 100-miler and won in a pretty darn good time of 18:10:07. Defending champ Mark Tanaka finshed second in 20:39:37; Mark won last year's race in 16:28:25, which gives me a good idea of how hard this year's trail conditions were. Rick Gaston was third in 16:28:25. Our first-place woman, Darla Brader, 35, of Bend, Oregon, was tied with Chris Askew for fourth overall, in 22:04:50.
In the 100-kilometers event, continuing a Kettle Moraine 100 tradition, a woman was once again our overall winner. Christine Crawford, 38, whose home borders on our trail, won in 11:08:12. Second place overall and first man was Matt Aro, 29, of Superior, Wisconsin, in 11:14:00. Mark Dziedzic was third in 11:49:40. And how about this? Tom Bunk, 66, who had also marked and re-marked the trail for us in the days before the race, was the third man and fourth overall finisher, in 12:18:23.
The 100-miles relay event was a good one again this year. The youthful studs calling themselves Psychic Mary kept ahead of the competition from start to finish and came in at 15:48:44.
And our innovative fourth event, the 38-Mile Fun Run, was also a big success once again. This is a non-competitive run that puts 20 or 30 fresh people out on the trail starting at about nightfall (8 p.m.) for the final 38 miles of our 100-mile course. With such a high DNF rate this year, it seemed especially important for the fun-runners to be out there on the dark trail to accompany the remaining 100-mile racers.
Owing to chaotic weather conditions, I was not able to personally present the place award plaques to those who earned them, at the finish line, as I like to do. Instead, these will be mailed out in the very near future.
This was a race which probably generated more unforgettable experiences than personal bests. For that, I am just as happy as can be. I'm looking forward to seeing all the runners and their families and crews back in Wisconsin for the 2009 Kettle Moraine 100, June 6-7.
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