Looking for a 100 mile race to run? Here are 10 reasons to run the Zumbro 100 mile race.
1. I’ll be there. Do you really need a 2-10?
2. It’s organized by one the best race directors around. You can be sure that you and your crew will be well taken care of every last detail will be covered. John Storkamp and his crew do an amazing job at putting on this event and many others races and events. You have a million things to worry about when doing an event like this and it make a big difference when you are running a well organized race.
3. It is a beautiful course. Growing up in northern MN I have always reserved most of the beauty in this state for the northern part especially the Duluth area, but the Zumbro area is a bit of a hidden gem in MN that is a great area to run.
4. It is a great race to do your first 100 mile race. This course is one of the better events to do your first 100 mile race. It is challenging enough so that it will keep your mind from going to complete mush, unlike some super flat faster ultras. Yet it is well supported and there are certainly plenty of runnable areas. Doing the multiple loops also make crewing and supporting runners a lot more manageable and allows for a lot of flexibility for pacers.
5. It is a family event. Having been at the last two races the size of the event has definitely grown, from 25 runners in 2011 when I ran to over 30 100 miles and many more 50 milers and now in 2012 with a 17 mile event it will be sure to grow. Despite this it seems like everyone still knows everyone and it is almost like one big reunion. Trust me it makes a world of difference when you pull into an aid station in the middle of the night and almost everyone there knows you by name and bends over backwards to make sure you have what you need. There often are fellow runners not running that race that are more than willing to pace runners. This works well because of the course set up and because there are so many great people at this event.
6. Amazing volunteers. I know that at most races and events like this there are no shortages of great people volunteering but this event has some of the best. Again John does a fantastic job at making sure that each ares is well staffed and that the volunteers are well prepared and know how to help support runners and crews alike. Many of them veteran runners themselves so you will be in good hands the entire way.
7. I forget exactly where it is but there is a spot on the course that peaks out from the trail and over looks a field. In the middle of the night especially when it is a clear sky and the moon is out you can look over the plowed field almost like looking out onto the ocean. It is a eerie feeling but a view that was burned into my memory when running this race the in 2011 and then when pacing last year.
8. Crowd support. Because you are doing multiple loops and the course whines its way through Zumbro Bottoms State Park you have several areas that you can get access to the course and cheer on the runners. This is not only great for actually being a spectator but to again provide support for your runner if you are a crew member.
9. Plenty of company. Even though there are not a lot of 100 mile runners the race is growing and with the addition of the Midnight 50 miler and the 17 Mile races you will have plenty of company out on the trails. This is always nice at 3AM when it is dark, cold, your tired and ultra-brained. (Yeah that’s a real word, look it up on the Internet)
10. PR Course. No this is not the fastest course out there but there is a lot of runnable areas and because you are running the same loop you know when you can push and when to take it easy. So no this is not a fast nor an easy course but it is consistent and you can plan for the course.
So there you go now go out and REGISTER