Ultra tough race added to marathon week
Running a marathon on three consecutive days has long been the toughest test during Lake Tahoe Marathon week.
Now it’s been topped.
New to the Lake Tahoe Marathon Race Week September 26 through October 1 agenda is the 72-mile Tahoe Ultra, an
endurance run designed to test athletes at the top of their game.
“This is an intense endurance race,” said LTM race Director Les Wright. “But we’ve found our niche and it’s attracting runners
from all over the country. Many participants who regularly run 100-mile races.”
The Tahoe Ultra is scheduled to start just after midnight on Saturday, Sept. 30 on Highway 89 just north of South Lake Tahoe. Participants will completely circle Lake Tahoe (counter
clockwise), a 72-mile loop, and will finish with the Lake Tahoe marathoners and other runners later that afternoon at South Shore’s Pope Beach.
Among the early entrants is Pam Reed of Tucson, Arizona, a mother of five and the director of the Tucson Marathon. Reed was the first woman to win the Badwater 146, a grueling race from Death Valley, the lowest point in the country, to the slopes of Mount Whitney, the highest peak in the lower 48 states.
Reed, who stands at 5-foot-3 and weighs 100 pounds, has completed more marathons, 50-milers and 100s than she can count. She is a regular participant in the Western States 100, Leadville 100 and Wasatch 100 and has appeared on many media outlets, including “60 Minutes.”
Reed will share distance-running tips as a keynote speaker at the Lake Tahoe Marathon’s Tahoe Triple and Tahoe Ultra dinner scheduled for Sept. 27 at the Horizon Casino Resort in Stateline.
According to Wright, there will be a total race time limit of 16 hours to complete the ultra race. Participants are encouraged to carry a headlamp, flashers and wear reflective clothing. They will need their own support vehicle and crew for the first 46 miles. There will be a timer at mile 50 to record runners’ 50-mile times for other race qualifications such as the Western States 100
(11 hours is the qualifying time).
The Lake Tahoe marathoners will begin their race at 8 a.m. at mile 46, Commons Beach in Tahoe City. The last 26.2 miles, the official marathon course along the West Shore, will be supported by marathon staff, volunteers and community groups. Cost is $110 per runner.
The organization will also host the 35 and 72-Mile Cycle Race/Ride on Sept. 29. Biking participants will begin at Zephyr Cove on the East Shore and will ride clockwise around Lake Tahoe (for 72 miles), ending back at the start line. For the 35-mile course, cyclists will start at Tahoe City and end at Zephyr Cove.
The 20-Mile Power Walk and Run, which starts at Homewood, California on the West Shore, is back and is set for Sept. 30.
This non-competitive event is open to recreational walkers and runners.
The marathon event, coined “A Saturday morning run you’ll never forget,” is also scheduled for Sept. 30 and starts at Tahoe City’s Commons Beach on the North Shore (8:30 a.m. for marathoners and 8 a.m. for elite women runners). The race winds down the West Shore and wraps up for a post-run bash at Pope Beach.
The half marathon and 10K event, scheduled for the same date, are also held on the West Shore with the half marathon beginning at Rubicon Bay and the 10K staring at Emerald Bay’s Inspiration Point. The Half Marathon regularly sells out so interested participants are advised to register early for this event. There are marathon relay and wheelchair events as well.
Lake Tahoe Marathon Race Week will also include a three-day triathlon (kayaking or swimming, cycling and running); and extreme golf, where golfers run the course as they play, then combine their time with their golf score to determine how they do.
For the toughest athletes, the Tahoe Triple starts Thursday is back as well, wrapping around the entire lake to meet up with Saturday marathoners for the final day of the difficult-but-breathtaking three-day ultra race. For short-distance runners, a 5K event is scheduled for Oct. 1 at Valhalla Historic Estates in South Lake Tahoe. A free Kids’ Fun Run, sponsored by the South Lake Tahoe Optimist Club, will follow the 5K event.
For more information or to register, phone (530) 544-7095 or visit the Lake Tahoe Marathon Web site at http://www.laketahoemarathon.com.