This weekend will see the 4th race of the Skyrunning ANZ series take place – The Northburn Sky Ultras. The event features a number of distances with a 50km and 100km Sky Ultra as well as a 100 mile course on offer as well.
Northburn has a reputation among hard-core runners as a gruelling slog fest of vertical accent and descent that has been known to grind prospective finishers into dust long before the final lap! However this year there is a strong field of runners stepping up to tackle the beast. Among those on the start line is Australian Skyrunning sensation Lucy Barthomew. Lucy has been in fine form of late and has already scored a 1st at Shotover Moonlight Skymarathon and a 2nd at the Hillary Skyrace. We got the chance to catch up with her quickly before she takes on the Northburn beast.
Skyrunning ANZ: Your running has gone from good to great over the last 6-10months, what is your secret? 😉
Lucy: I think the main thing I have changed and come to appreciate is the need for speed! Its amazing how that training translates across to the mountain running and how rewarding it can be. Emelie and I have found a great balance between getting a good fix of long mountain days, high heart rate training and rest so it has been a real pleasure to have some good results- but still so much to improve!
Skyrunning ANZ: Lucy you have been in NZ for 6 weeks, that is a long time, do you have a favourite trail there yet?
Lucy: I don’t think I could choose one! I have loved every trail I have been on so far, they are all so unique and different to anything else I have stepped on and there are still so many to see! I might have to stay another 6 weeks to answer this one.
Skyrunning ANZ: What was it about the Northburn Sky Ultra that attracted you to race?
Lucy: I extended my NZ trip to fit Northburn Sky Ultra in because it looks like another totally different trail and a real community event. I am also curious to see the 100mile and 100km crazies get it done! I have heard so many good things- I can’t wait!
Skyrunning ANZ: If you could go back and give your younger self one bit of advice what would it be
Lucy: Hmm, maybe to start the speed work sooner and listen to everyone who told me this when I first started running… and maybe to not try and run every race under the sun… there is a lot to say but at the same time it’s made me the runner I am now.
Skyrunning ANZ: That’s some solid advice! So what about gear? What will you use for the race?
Lucy: I will be using CLIF shotbloks and gels as my energy. Salomon sense5 soft grounds for my feet, Salomon S-lab skort, Salomon tank and a Salomon 12L pack.
Well there you have it Skyrunners! Good luck to everyone racing on the weekend and for everyone else – seek “Less Cloud, More Sky”