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Weekend recap: trail edition

Calgary's Arden Young won the Quad Dipsea in California, while other Canadians raced their way into the top 10 at South Africa's Ultra-Trail Cape Town

Photo by: Jeffrey Stern Twitter

While several of Canada’s top runners were battling over 10 kilometres in the nation’s capital this weekend, elsewhere in the world Canadian ultrarunners were hitting the trails and running their way to podium finishes. Calgary’s Arden Young was the top female finisher (and sixth overall) at the Quad Dipsea 28 miler in 4:48, and several Canadians had top-10 finishes at the Ultra-Trail Cape Town 100K in South Africa. Here’s your weekend trail roundup.

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Arden Young takes the top spot in California

After finishing second in 2019, Young who is a full-time dentist in Calgary, came back to take the victory this weekend at the Quad Dipsea in Mill Valley, California. The challenging course (which packs 9,000 feet of vertical into 28 miles or 45 kilometres) begins with three flights of stairs equalling the height of a 50-story building before descending into a hilly trail with sections named “Dynamite”, “The Hogsback”, “The Rainforest” and “Cardiac.” It then plunges down a steep ravine before heading up the final climb, aptly named “Insult Hill.”

Young finished in 4:48 for sixth place overall, and eight-place improvement from her 14th place finish in 2019. Rod Farvard of California was the winner of the men’s race in 3:48. Official results have not yet been published, but you can watch for updates on the event website or ultratrailsignup.com.

Canadians crack the top 10 at Ultra-Trail Cape Town

The Ultra-Trail Cape Town 100K began on top of Table Mountain in South Africa this weekend, where American Jim Walmsley dominated the field to take the win in 9:47:20, ahead of SĂ©bastien Spehler of France and Italy’s Andreas Reiterer, who finished second and third. Mathieu Blanchardwho is from France but lives and trains in Montreal (and who recently finished third at UTMB) took fourth place in 10:54:18, and Canada’s top finisher was Jean-François Cauchon, who placed sixth in 11:06:24.

Marianne Hogan of Quebec was Canada’s top female finisher, running to second place (and 13th overall) in 12:15:13 behind two-time UTMB winner Courtney Dauwalterwho won the race in 11:20:04 for eighth overall. Hogan is a guide for Canadian para triathlete, Jessica Tuomela, and in 2019 the pair won the bronze medal at the World Para Triathlon Series race in Montreal, gold at the Para Triathlon World Cup test event in Tokyo and bronze at the Para Triathlon World Championships in Lausanne.

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COVID-19 in South Africa: uncertainty for athletes

As the weekend comes to a close, it is uncertain how several of these athletes will get home, or if they will be able to at all. With the new coronavirus variant spreading across South Africa, travel from the country has been halted to several countries, including the U.S. and Canada, to mitigate its spread. We will keep you updated as the situation develops.

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