While much attention was focused on Western States 100-mile Endurance Run this past weekend, Canada also had its own celebration on the trails. On June 29, The Quebec Mega Trail (QMT) hosted the 2019 Ultra-Trail 100K Championship in Mont-Sainte-Anne, Que. in a 109.5K race with 4,880 metres of ascent and 4,700 metres of descent. The QMT 10K race was the Canadian Mountain Running Championship.
The race begins on the banks of the St. Lawerence River with views of Massif of Charlevoix and Mont-Saint-Anne. The course travels through the Caps trail, untamed Mestachibo trail, and Jean-Larose Falls. Other than the 100K championship race, QMT also hosted a 50-mile, 50K, 25K, 15K, 6K, 3K, and Vertical Kilometre.
In the QMT 110K race, fast times were recorded with Anne Champagne winning the women’s race in 12:10:44. Ailsa MacDonald came second in 12:27:02, and Elisabeth Cauchon took third. The men’s race was fairly close with Maxim Leboeuf winning in 10:26:45, Mathieu Blanchard second in 10:49:05, and Jean-Francois Cauchon third in 10:58:09. The winners were awarded with trips to Diagonale des Fous on Reunion Island off the coast of Madagascar.
This was Champagne’s first race at a distance over 80K. According to ultrarunner Mallory Richard, “the trails were really wet and muddy. It was challenging, but a beautiful trail.” A highlight for Richard was when the race director Jean Fortier played the song Xanadu by Rush as the race began.
The QMT 10K distance was the Canadian Mountain Running Championship. Top three men and women runners made the team for the World Mountain Running Championship (short course) in Argentina November 15. Anne-Marie Comeau won the women’s race in 1:02:39, Robyn Mildren raced to second in 1:04:27, and Emma Neigel to third in 1:07:18.
Jeff Archer won the men’s race in 0:52:54, Kristopher Swanson was second in 0:53:41, and Robert McCann third in 0:53:53. All six have been offered an opportunity to represent Canada in November.