A new record fell at the 2017 Hardrock Hundred Endurance Run.
Before the cutoff time of 48 hours at 6 a.m. Sunday in Silverton, 126 runners completed the 100.5-mile trek through the San Juan Mountains. Only 19 runners in the 145-person field dropped out of the race or did not finish.
The number of finishers was up from 114 in 2016. The previous record of 125 was set in 2015.
“Our high finish rate this year shows how dedicated and prepared our runners were this year,” said race director Dale Garland. “It really helped that we had great weather for most of the two days.”
Robert Andrulis of Arizona was the 126th and final finisher of the race. He kissed the finisher’s rock in 47 hours, 49 minutes, 20 seconds. He was greeted by 2017 winner and four-time champion Kilian Jornet of Spain, who won this year’s race in 24 hours, 32 minutes, 19 seconds despite a dislocated left shoulder suffered coming down Stony Pass near Mile 13 of the race. Jornet stayed to greet the final finisher before flying back to Europe.
“Killian – what a class act! The fact that he was at the finish line actively being involved in helping our runners celebrate, taking pictures, posing with them, etc. further shows that he is not only a phenomenal athlete but someone who genuinely enjoys being a part of the Hardrock community,” said Garland.
Fruita’s Kirk Apt, who won the race in 2000, finished the Hardrock 100 for the 23rd time at age 55. 1999 champion and 58-year-old Blake Wood of Los Alamos, New Mexico, finished his 21st Hardrock. Five-time women’s winner Betsy Kalmeyer, 56 and of Leadville, picked up her 18th Hardrock 100 finish.
Every finish is an incredible feat at Hardrock, a course that averages an elevation of 11,000 feet and crosses 12,000 feet 13 times, including the 14,048-foot summit of Handies Peak. The race began in 1992 and had only been canceled twice, in 1995because of too much snow and in 2002 for extreme fire danger.
Next year’s race is tentatively scheduled for July 20-22, race director Dale Garland said. More than 2,000 people will again apply for the race’s lottery, and only 145 will be selected to become part of next year’s Hardrock family.