After a great 2018, your 2019 calendar only have four races. Do you want to prepare more specifically each race?
Yes, I find that I’m much better when I have plenty of time to recover fully after each race and then prepare specifically for the demands of my next event. Also, I intend to do both Hardrock and Diagonale des Fous, which are two of the most difficult 100 mile races in the world this year. This naturally necessitates that the total volume of my racing be reduced to ensure I stay healthy and motivated.
2018 was a good year for you. What is your balance of the season?
Yes, 2018 was a very satisfying season for me. Each race was very different and tested my capabilities as an ultra trailrunner. Tarawera is a very fast course, TDS a very mountainous course, and UTMF a very mixed course, so it was nice for me to feel both versatile and consistent in my performances.
2018 it was also the year of your return home, to your Colorado mountains. What does it mean for you to live in Colorado?
It has been great to return home to Colorado — where I grew up and where I spent the first 27 years of my life. My wife and I lived in California for the last 5 years, which was very nice and where we may someday return. But Colorado feels like home to me and it has some of the best trail running in the world. In the summer months, when I’m preparing for the most important races of the season, there is no better place for me to be.
We will see you again in Spain. Why Transvulcania?
Yes, I’m very excited for Transvulcania. It’s obviously an iconic race internationally and has a reputation for being very special. My main objective for the season is Hardrock, and Transvulcania is good timing for my preparation. It’s a race I’ve wanted to do for many years and I’m happy it is finally a possibility in 2019!
Your second half of the year is very powerful. Hardrock and Diagonale, two of the most wild races of the world. Is a special target?
Yes, I’m extremely excited for both races. They are both exhilarating and terrifying in their own ways and will challenge me intensely as an athlete. I have great respect for the events and feel very fortunate for the opportunity to take part. I fully recognize it will take everything I have to successfully complete both events, but I look forward to the challenge!
For you, a Colorado man :), take part of races like Leadville or Hardrock this year, is special?
Yes, it very special for me. Leadville was where my career began and Hardrock has been a dream race for many years. This season marks a decade in the sport for me and I feel incredibly honored to have an opportunity to do Hardorck at this point in my career — especially having just moved back to Colorado. It will be great to have some of the world’s best in my home state to compete with too! (Kilian, Xavier, Francois)
Probably, Transvulcania is the most american race of Europe and Hardrock the most european race y USA. Do you agree?
Haha, yes, that’s a very interesting way to put it. Americans have had good success at Transvulcania and Europeans have performed great at Hardrock. Though I haven’t been to La Palma, it seems the trails are more runnable on the island, similar to American trails. And Hardrock is basically just a wilder version of UTMB, so I totally agree with your observation.
And, finally, Réunion. More than a race, an adventure, but one of most iconic races in the world
Yes, I can’t wait! To my knowledge, very few Americans have ever done the race let alone been competitive. I will approach the race with great humility and hope I can be the first American to achieve a great result on the Island! It will be a great adventure indeed.