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Kilian Reflects on the 2010 Western States 100 : 2011 WS100 slated for this weekend.
Posted on 06/20/2011
The countdown is on -- only four days until the 2011 Western States 100 Race. Salomon's Kilian Jornet is returning this year with his sights set on 1st place after a 3rd place finish last year. Kilian took a moment to revisit his first Western States 100 experience last summer.
How did you analyze your 2010 WS100 experience?
I learned a lot on this race last year, it's in the defeat that we learn the most. It was my first race in the US, and their way of trail running in completely different from Europe. The race is more rolling, faster and the runners didn't stop even for just 30 seconds at the feed zone! So, it was really new for me to manage the hydration versus the warm conditions. The American trail runners have a different approach to Europeans. With Geoff Roes and Anton Krupricka, we talked over many kilometers without any stress or competition, just to have the pleasure of sharing moments together. Our talks focused on our environment and our links with nature. I really felt close to what they were saying. It was a good chance for me to meet and talk with these exceptional athletes and an opportunity to observe their body language and how they managed their speed throughout the race.
Why have you decided to come back this year?
It's not a race that I can relate to. There are not enough mountains. It is not technical. And it's too warm. But I have to come back! It's the race history which has made me return. Ultra Trail was born with this race 38 years ago and I can feel that historic atmosphere when I run the Western States. It is important for me to know the origin of my sport to help me understand it better.