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Marianne Hogan speeds to second place at Ultra-trail Cape Town

Hogan proved she is very much recovered from injury in a solid run to the podium in South Africa

Marianne Hogan Cape Town Photo by: Marianne Hogan

Quebec ultrarunner Marianne Hogan was back in beautiful form to close out a challenging 2023 season, capturing second place (she also ran to second in 2021) at Saturday’s Ultra-trail Cape Town (UTCT) 100K in Cape Town, South Africa. Hogan finished the race in 12 hours, 39 minutes, 53 seconds, behind New Zealand’s Ruth Croft, who sped to a win in 12:12:20. Russian runner Ekaterina Mityaeva rounded out the podium in 12:44:07. 

Ultra-trail Cape Town is described on the event website as “a front-loaded, technical route offering two significant climbs on Table Mountain and Karbonkelberg within the first 50K, with 4,972 metres of elevation gain.”

The second-place finish at UTCT (along with a win at the Tsaigu 85 km race in Linhai, China in October) is a redemption for Hogan, after having to take much of the 2023 season off due to injury. Hogan is known for managing to hit the podium at both UTMB (second place) and Western States 100 (third) in 2022; the runner tore her psoas muscle during her epic run at UTMB, which contributed to a sacral stress fracture the runner was diagnosed with in April.

At the end of October, Hogan won the Tsaigu 85K race (she called it “a good day to be rekindled with the concept of racing,” on Instagram), and her well-executed podium finish at UTCT cements her return as a remarkably resilient ultra-trail athlete. Pre-race, Hogan was celebrating her ability to race again on social media. “Who knows what will happen on Saturday, and how the body will feel on such a short training period,” she wrote. “But I sure as hell enjoyed these past few months, and am already excited for more long bike rides & great adventures with friends. This is where I’m at right now, and I’m gonna savor my ability to show up on the start line of UTCT on Saturday.”

New Zealand’s Croft ran well from the start; she also took first place to Hogan’s second at Western States 100 in 2022. Hogan ran head-to-head with Croft until Table Mountain (around 31K), where Croft steadily began to build a gap between herself and the rest of the pack. Behind Croft, Hogan and Mityaeva had a battle for second, with Mityaeva sneaking into the lead when Hogan took a bad fall.

A spectacular push by Hogan in the home stretch landed her just ahead of Mityaeva (who was fourth in 2022 at UTCT) at the finish.

The men’s race

With Brit ultrarunner and favorite-to-win Tom Evans out of the mix (the runner withdrew days before the event after being attacked and mugged on a training run), Russian athlete Dmitry Mityaev was able to dominate from the start, breaking away from the pack after the first checkpoint and executing a flawless performance. Despite taking a painful fall (like Hogan in the women’s race), missing a turn and having to backtrack, Mityaev finished in 10:43:06.

Almost 20 minutes behind Mityaev was American runner Caleb Owens, second in 11:02:28, followed by Anthony Costales, also of the U.S., in 11:24:08.

Besides the 100K race, Ultra-trail Cape Town has four other events: a 100-miler, a 55 km race, a 35 km trail race and a 25 km “explorer” race. After Evans’ attack and subsequent race withdrawal before the event, race directors announced increased security measures, however, three runners were mugged during the 100-mile race. In a statement posted on Facebook, race director Stuart McConnachie said that the three runners were physically unharmed and had chosen to carry on with the race. “All runners passing through the Simonstown checkpoint are being informed, and the matter has been handed over to the South African Police Service.”

For full results of all the UTCT events, head here.

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