The last 2 weeks have witnessed some of the most anticipated races of the season. From National Championships to the Skyrunning® Ultra Championships, it was time to see if the hard work, training, and race days had finally paid off for SCOTT Running athletes. Joseph Gray, Sage Canaday, and Kevin Everett have all had successful and even record breaking seasons, and while not every day can be their best day on a course, their hard work and perseverance over the last six months has more than paid off for these elite athletes.
Joseph Gray: Nabs Silver at National Championships
On Sunday, September 22 at the Snowbasin Resort in Ogden, UT Joseph Gray competed in the Xterra Trail Running National Championships. Returning home from a long stay in Europe, that included three intense competitions, Joseph felt fatigued as he set out on the 21k course. The course, described by Xterra as a “true championship masterpiece” with “gut-wrenching climbs” and “twisted single track” all perfect for the “all-around runner,” proved difficult even for Joseph. Starting at an altitude of over 6,000 feet, Joseph felt like he was battling the elevation from start to finish. However, fast-footed in his Race Rockers, Joseph was still able to navigate the twists, turns, climbs, and descents of the Xterra masterpiece course to a second place finish in a final time of 1 hour 18 minutes and 1 second, averaging 6 minute miles. With 8 weeks to rest and prepare for the World Championship in Oahu, Hawaii, Joseph has his eyes set on defending his 2012 World Championship Title.
Sage Canaday: A Grueling Day at UROC
Photo Courtesy Vertical Runner
Anyone watching the weather set up over Colorado last weekend knew that the Ultra Run of Champions (UROC) was going to be a challenge. On Friday, as temperatures fell, and rain turned to snow, it was anyone’s guess how the elite group of runners might handle the many challenges that awaited them on the 100k course. On Saturday morning, the skies had cleared, but the obstacles for Sage Canaday had only just started to show themselves. Sage faced incredible GI discomfort from start to finish, but managed to hang with the lead pack for most of the first half of the race. At mile 33, after trekking through 16” of snow, Sage even momentarily took the lead. However, dizziness and cold conditions quickly took their toll on Sage, and he dropped back behind the leaders. Struggling just to finish the race, finding strength and inspiration from his supporters, Sage finished the 2013 UROC in 6th place with a final time of 11 hours and 25 seconds. Upon finishing the race, Sage exclaimed, “That is the longest I’ve ever run!”
Saturday was not all frustration for Sage. With his 6th place finish, in addition to his 3rd place finish at Transvulcania in May and his win at the Speedgoat 50k in July, Sage had enough points to take home 2nd place overall in the 2013 Skyrunning® Ultra Series Championship with 258 points. Unable to overcome Champion Kilian Jornet, with 287 points, Sage left Vail vowing to continue training and come back even stronger next year.
Kevin Everett: L.A. Triathlon Champion
Sunday, September 30th was a dream come true for Kevin Everett. After a strong summer season of training and admirable finishes in triathlons across the country, Kevin arrive in Los Angeles optimistic and confident for the 2013 L.A. Triathlon. Starting with the Venice Beach swim, one of Kevin’s favorite swims in the sport, Kevin was strong out of the water in 3rd place. Jumping on his SCOTT Plasma, Kevin had the strongest bike split of the day and took over 1st place around mile 8 of the 25 mile course through the massive highways of downtown L.A. For the run, Kevin laced up his favorite Race Rockers and crushed the steep hill on Grand Avenue (twice!) giving him the 2nd fastest run split of the day. As Kevin crossed the finish line, with a total time of 1 hour, 52 minutes and 28 seconds, he became the 2013 Herbalife® L.A. Triathlon Champion! At 38 years old, Kevin never dreamed of a championship on this prestigious course, but credits the loving support of his family and friends and is grateful for his health.