Photo credit: Craig Kolesky/Red Bull Content Pool
Ryan Sandes is getting ready to take on the massive Western States! Over the years Ryan has managed to conquer the biggest races on the planet, but this ultra has yet to be beaten by him. He will be pushing for a win when he races in two week’s time, we wish Ryan all the best! Press release follows:
When it comes to ultra-trail running, locally and internationally, there isn’t much out there that SA hero, Ryan Sandes, hasn’t put his stamp of ownership on. But there is one title that eluded him for the past 3 years; the one title that all serious ultra-trail runners strive to have under their belts – the Western States 100mile Endurance Run – the original 100miler. Ryan hopes that 2015 will be his year.
“If I could choose one race I would love to win, it would be the Western States 100 miler,” says Ryan. “It’s the ‘original 100 miler, one of the first ever and the race has such a great vibe. I came 2nd to Timmy Olson in 2012 and in 2013 I injured myself while training for the race. Last year I was hoping to go one better than 2012, but after a very busy first half of the year racing wise, I battled to find my legs. No excuses though, I did the best I could do and was very happy to come 5th.”
The 2015 line up is arguably one of the most competitive fields the race has seen to date, with 2014 defending champion, Robert Krar, and the other top 10 finishers which include Dylan Bowman, Alex Varner and Ian Sharman all vying for top position. 2014 Ultra Trail World Champion, François D’haene, will also be competing. So why does Ryan think this will be the year that the title is his?
“I have learnt a lot from my experience last year and realised that if I want to win Western States, I will need to train very race-specific and only focus on racing Western States for the 1st half of the year. It’s a super competitive and tough race. It’s a challenge that deserves a lot of respect and you need to arrive on race day with fresh legs that have not been over-raced,” explains Ryan. “This year I have been super focused and all my training so far has been geared towards the Western States 100 miler. It can be a risky approach putting all your eggs in one basket, but I believe this is what I have to do to give myself a chance at winning the title. Next year I want to focus on one or two other races, as I love running in new locations and exploring new mountains. So this may be my last crack at the iconic Western States, as I only have a limited number of good 100 miler races in my legs, and would love to explore some other races as mentioned.”
So all eyes will be on Ryan on Saturday, 27 June when he undertakes the Western States 100miler for the 3rd time. If you would like to know more about Western States 100miler please visit http://www.wser.org/and follow Ryan live on his Facebook Page, Twitter and Instagram account @RyanSandes.