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Canadians smash national records at 100K World Championships

Julie Hamulecki and Bernadette Benson both crushed their own 100K Canadian records

Photo by: Instagram/jhamulecki

While most of the world of ultrarunning focused its attention on UTMB this past weekend, Canada’s Julie Hamulecki and Bernadette Benson quietly ran to a pair of national records at the IAU 100K World Championships in Bernau, Germany, on Saturday. This was the first time that the 100K worlds were being held since 2018, and the two Canadian women took advantage of the return to racing, with Hamulecki clocking an amazing open record of 7:36:39 and Benson running to a W50 national best of 8:32:53. Going into the race, the records already belonged to Hamulecki and Benson, but they both shattered their previous bests by significant margins.

Hamulecki and Benson at the worlds opening parade. (Photo: Instagram/bernadette.benson)

Success is nothing new for Hamulecki

Hamulecki is no stranger to posting big results on the world stage. In 2016, she ran to a 14th-place finish at the 100k world championships in Los Alcazares, Spain. There, she ran a time of 8:06:35, which was just a few minutes off the Canadian record at that time. Two years later, Hamulecki toed the line at the 100K worlds once again, this time in Sveti Martin na Muri, Croatia, where she bettered the national record by close to five minutes. In Croatia, she crossed the finish line in 12th place, adding yet another top-20 world championships result to her resume. 

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Going into Saturday’s race in Bernau, which is just north of Berlin, Hamulecki had nothing to prove to anyone. With two solid finishes on the world stage already and a national record under her belt, it could’ve been easy for her to rest on her laurels, but that is the opposite of what Hamulecki did, and she ended up leaving her 2018 record in the dust. 

Hamulecki runs to the finish line at the 2016 worlds in Spain. (Photo: Twitter/AngeloContarin)

Multiple records for Benson

The W50 Canadian best isn’t the only record that Benson beat in Germany. She has dual-citizenship between Canada and Australia, where she lives and trains, and this allowed her to compete for Aussie records, too. Thanks to this, Benson added the Australian W50 record to her list of accomplishments. She smashed the Canadian record (a time of 9:07:13 that she set at a race in Australia in 2019) by a whopping 35 minutes, and she just managed to eke out the Australian best time, beating that record by a slim margin of 26 seconds. On top of Benson’s two records, she also took home gold in the W50 Masters category. 

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“Besting the [Canadian] W50 record by 35 minutes, the [Australian] W50 record by 26 seconds and achieving a Masters W50 gold medal,” Benson wrote on Instagram. “But running with none of those as my focus on the day. Just showing up, every minute, for 512 minutes.” 

For full results from Bernau, click here

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