The start of the Black Canyon 100km, which features stacked start lists, was delayed by two-and-a-half hours due to inclement weather.
A mixed forecast had suggested storms in the build up to Saturday’s race in Arizona, which had been due to begin at 0700 local time.
And so it proved, with difficulties getting runners and volunteers to the start prompting the initial decision to put back the start to 0900, which was later extended to 0930.
Getting everyone safely to start line
Jamil Coury, founder, owner and CEO of race organiser Aravaipa Running, announced the news shortly after 5am.
He said: “We have a two-hour delay for the 100km race.
“Overnight we had a decent-sized storm which dropped snow across the northern parts of the course.
We have reports of about an inch and a half accumulation up at Mayer High School [which is where the race starts].
“It’s a bit of a wet snow and due to freezing temperatures our shuttle buses is the main delay here.
“In order to get everyone up to the start line safely – as well as volunteers and everyone else, your new start time for the 100k wave one [which features the elite runners] will be 9am local. Wave two will be 9.30am and wave three at 10am.”
A further half hour delay was then announced to ensure everyone got to the start line but the fastest runners began at 9.30am.
Brighter weather forecast
The good news for both participants – and those looking forward to watching the livestream – is that the worst of the weather now appears to have moved through.
Coury added: “This is the last of the storms for the weekend so we’re really looking forward to an incredible, beautiful day on the trails. It’s going to be amazing conditions once we get out there.”
Heather Jackson, last year’s runner-up, headlines the women’s field while there are a whole host of big contenders for the men, including 2020 winner Hayden Hawks and Cole Watson in what is regarded as one of the most competitive 100km trail races in the world.
When the action does get under way you will be able to watch the livestream and track the runners here.