Steamboat ultra-marathon runner Devon Olson rushes to Leadville 50 win
It’s an off week, Steamboat Springs-based trail ultra-marathon runner Devon Olson explained, so that means he’s running a measly 45 miles this week.
“Then, starting Monday, we’re eight weeks out from Run Rabbit Run,” he said, “so we’ll do six weeks of at least 90 miles per week, at the very least; then, we’ll taper.”
Steamboat’s own 100-mile ultra is the big summer target for Olson, but he managed to break up his training for that with a dominating performance Sunday in the Leadville Silver Rush 50-mile trail race.
Olson took the lead 35 miles in, then crushed his competition down the stretch, pulling away to win in 6 hours, 53 minutes and 26 seconds.
His time set a record on the course.
It wasn’t his ultimate goal for the summer, but it made for a pretty sweet pitstop along the way.
“It wasn’t that I went in thinking, ‘I’m going to set a course record,’” he said. “I went in thinking, ‘I’m going to run really fast, because that’s what I like to do.’ I knew I had the potential to go top three and get on the podium.”
He was one of two local finishers in the race. Charlie MacArthur also put together a very strong performance, placing 16th in 8:43:43.
Olson moved to Steamboat Springs in 2014, motivated initially by Run Rabbit Run. Three full years later, he said he’s in love with running the Yampa River Valley.
“It’s one of the most beautiful places to run,” he said. “You feel like you’re on vacation all the time, living here as a runner, at least this time of year. It’s a little tougher in the winter.”
He has two interruptions to his Run Rabbit Run training looming. The first is a 50-kilometer race he’s planning on hitting near Pikes Peak. The second is the Steamboat Stinger trail marathon Aug. 13.
Olson won’t approach either with his training dialed in for his best possible performance. Rather, they’ll both be training steps on his path to his summer’s goal.
It’ll be his third attempt at Run Rabbit Run. He dropped after 70 miles on his first try, then was 38th in his second attempt.
He’s hoping this year will be different. He’s hoping it unfolds a lot like his trip to Leadville.
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