So its 430am the day I fly out to Hong Kong, another 16hrs till I leave Chch (23 until I get on a plane in Auckland) and I am wide awake. No I am not that uncontrollably excited, I am spending some quality time with Bella before I leave. I am guessing she realises I am off for a week and thus is not going down to sleep so we can hang out- it’s actually pretty nice.
But enough, if you are one of 4 or so people who visit here I doubt it’s to read about babies and their baggage…Hong Kong 100k Trail Ultra- oh yeah! I am super excited about this trip! I don’t even know where to start. Having never been to HK I am not really sure what to expect. I have tried to mentally prepare for the mass of people and huge city, something that will come as a shock- I call Darfield “the big smoke” after all. The heat and humidity will be hard to deal with possibly, but it’s summer here and “winter” in HK, so it shouldn’t be too bad. Ryan is already in HK and said it was only around 8 degrees, which sounded too good to be true, while race day forecast is around 18 and mostly cloudy. I have made contact with a pretty knowledgeable local living in HK, Andre Blumbery, who has done a bunch of the Asian TNF100 races, as well as TNF100Aust(I ran a 10hr30 here, had a very rough time). From what I can gather HK100 is very much same same as TNF100 but maybe a little harder. Andre also gave me a link to a heap of course photos and info. The course, from what I can tell, is a real contrast between paved road and amazing single track, rocky trails and steps and concrete path, city views or mountains and beaches- it seems to have a crazy blend.
There seems to be a very solid field this year also. Clearly Ryan Sands jumps out as the man to beat, but there is also the first and second place getters from last year lining up- William Davies and Jeremy Ritcey, the top 3 finishers from this year’s Annapurna 100- Aite Tamang, Sudip Kulung and Bed Bahadur Sunuwar and 2 elites from China’s mainland- Yun YanQiao and Xing Ruling. Then there is always a few that no one knows about that are keen to throw down and have a little fun. The race organisers are getting into – “Many in the trail running community are talking about a sub 11 hour record this year”. I guess we will see. If that happens don’t expect to see me up front helping push for the sub11hr (which is about 45mins quicker that Davies winning time last year). I am very much going into this one under done, but I am totally happy with this and my (lack of) fitness at this stage. My body feels as good as it has in a while and my mind is fresh, the goal has been to keep it this way at this stage in the year, rather than trashing myself. I exchanged a few e-mails with Lizzy Hawker (the bad ass who has multiple UTMB wins and won last year’s HK100)- her advice re HK- enjoy it! Easy, I was going to do that anyway. She also said watch out for the monkeys…..
I will have a few days in HK checking out the place and hopefully getting out on the course with Andre, Ryan and Jen.
Win a Pack!
So if you leave a time predication in the comments section- as in what time you think I will run on the 18th Feb at the HK100k- and your time is the closest to what I actually do run you win a Salomon XT Wing 5 pack! There are a few clues above as to what I might run in HK, as well in older posts, but who knows what the day might bring. Maybe throw in a placing also, just in case we get folks guessing the same difference. Also only 1 prediction per person I think is fair (and sorry NZ postal address only).
“Salomon XT Wings 5 pack is a lightweight pack built for comfort and stability that will get you far down the trail.”
I will try and update this with some photos or text pre race, if not a long winded rambling that I will try and pass of as a “race report”…..
Note- You have to get your time prediction in by Friday mid night and also if this is you first time leaving a comment here I will have to approve it first before it shows up. I will be travelling for a while and don’t know how the interwebs access will be in HK, but don’t worry, if you get it in in time I will still count it!