Grand Slam of Ultrarunning

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
For other uses, see Grand Slam (disambiguation).

The Grand Slam of Ultrarunning is a set of four of the most prestigious 100 mile races contested in the United States, comprising the Western States 100 in California, the Vermont 100 Mile Endurance Run in Vermont, the Wasatch Front 100 Mile Endurance Run in Utah, and the Leadville Trail 100 in Colorado. A small number of people manage to complete all four in one calendar year. The original Grand Slam included Old Dominion 100 Mile Endurance Run rather than Vermont, and before Old Dominion was removed from the slam, runners were given a choice between the two races.

The term is also used for a successful completion of the 4 Deserts races, each of 250 kilometers, in one calendar year, a feat which has been managed by only 11 people.

History[edit]

The first runner to complete the Grand Slam was Tom Green, 35, of Maryland in 1986 in a combined time of 96 hours, 26 minutes, and 28 seconds. At the time, there were only 4 100 mile races in North America. These were the Old Dominion 100 in Virginia, Western States, Leadville, and Wasatch. Two runners completed the series in 1987 and three in 1988. In 1989, the Vermont 100 was added to the series, and runners could choose between it or Old Dominion. Starting in 2003, Old Dominion was removed from the series. In 2008, Western States was cancelled due to forest fires and the Arkansas Traveller 100 was run in its place.[1]

Today about a dozen runners complete the Grand Slam each year. Entry is limited by lotteries at Western States and Wasatch. From 1986 through 2012 there have been 266 official finishers, with 22 more in 2013. The fastest time as of 2012 was 74:54:16 by Neal Gorman, 33 of the District of Columbia in 2010. In 2013, Ian Sharman, 33, of Oregon set a new record of 69:49:38 Complete list of finishers. 2013 finishers.

Controversy[edit]

Entry into the Grand Slam is administered by the race committee for the Wasatch 100, which is also the last race in the series, normally held in early September. In 2012 entry costs $80 and must be received before the start of the first race (Western States) in late June.[2] Entered runners who complete the first three races are guaranteed entry into Wasatch without having to go through the lottery. Runners who complete all four races but who do not enter the series are not officially recognized. A list of these so-called "stealth" runners was maintained at http://www.run100s.com/stealth.htm [3]

Year Name Old Dominion Western States Vermont Leadville Wasatch Total time
2002 Sam Voltaggio, 51, TX 25:19:00 28:59:24 26:08:21 29:00:46 34:27:21 117:46:31
2004 Rob Apple, 43, TN 29:11:37 28:46:07 29:07:32 35:08:24 122:13:40
2005 Rob Apple, 44, TN 28:48:32 27:43:32 29:42:28 35:15:46 121:30:18
2010 Pete Stevenson, 37, CO 18:58:42 21:48:28 24:36:46 32:56:19 98:20:15
2013 Nick Clark, 39, CO 16:56:23 15:54:32 17:06:29 20:24:26 70:21:50

On Aug. 30, 2013, this page was removed, possibly out of concern that Nick Clark might set a course record without being officially recognized when Wasatch was to be held on Sept. 6-7, 2013.[4] In addition, the following text was added to http://www.run100s.com/gs.htm

MESSAGE FROM THE GRAND SLAM OF ULTRARUNNING™ COMMITTEE AND THE WASATCH 100 RACE COMMITTEE
The Grand Slam of Ultrarunning™ Committee and the Wasatch Front 100 Mile Endurance Run Committee do not endorse, recognize, or ratify anyone or their times involved in the so-called “unofficial” grand slam of ultrarunning. Likewise we do not support, encourage, or sustain anyone involved in this pursuit.
We continue to recognize, applaud, and award the runners who are legitimately registered in and officially complete The Grand Slam of Ultrarunning™.
We also remind all who are observing or otherwise involved that the term “Grand Slam of Ultrarunning™” is a trademark of The Grand Slam of Ultrarunning™ entity, and only those who are official entrants and finishers of The Grand Slam of Ultrarunning™ are entitled to use the term “Grand Slam of Ultrarunning™” in whatever form (including in any form that might cause trademark confusion) in connection with their running endeavors.

Kieren McCarthy questioned the legality of the Wasatch committee taking ownership of the trademark rights, noting that the other races in the series are open to anyone and that the trademark is not registered.[5]

References[edit]

External links[edit]