Saturday, December 10, 2005

Online coverage of the 2005 Coast to Kosi;f=20;t=000361;p=1

Final Thoughts about the 2005 Aust 6-day race

It's now two weeks since the race and it's still hard to comprehend what happened during the week of the race. My pre-race advertising included a release titled "World Records to go". In my wildest dreams, I didnt really believe that they would! But boy did they tumble. I would say there was over a dozen world, age world, Australian, age Aust and other National records fell during the week! Can't be a bad track for those many records to fall.

Only time will tell, if this goes down in history as the World Greatest ever 6-day race. It has to be close though!

The constant improvement once again made by the Colac Race committee. They continue to listen, learn and improve from year to year. Well done to the Committee
The great performances shown by all of the Australians. Peter Hoskinson breaking 700km and David Billett breaking 600km. The amazing first up performance by Garry Wise in running over 600kms. The great first 6-day race by Lindsay Phillips for a few years. I think Lindsay has dispelled the "Westfield" monkey from his back and I think we will see great things from him in years to come.

The battle between Ken Matchett and Stan Miskin in the Over 80 category.
The sportsmanship shown by so many competitors in the event.

It was an emotional experience which made me proud to be the Vice President of the Aust Ultra Runners Association.

It was great to see so many international competitors in the event, especially my friend Arun from India who has improved in leaps and bounds in the last three years. I would have loved to have spent more time getting to know the other International runners during the week.

The way crews helped one another and other runners without thinking twice.

The Great food prepared by Helene, Alana and the other ladies.

The Great atmosphere at the Square.

It's the best venue in Australia.

Catching up with old friends and making new ones during the week.

I hope the people of Colac will continue to get behind the race and support it. They should be proud of their race. It's the BEST. The committee is doing a fantastic job, but they desperately need fresh people to help them.

I am looking forward to hopefully qualifying for the race in two years time and taking part myself.

Phil Essam
10 Dec 05

Friday, December 09, 2005

San Diego One Day Race Results - November 12-13, 2005

San Diego One Day Race Results
Hospitality Point
San Diego, CA
November 12-13, 2005

For full results, go to Matt Mahoney's: or the International Association of Ultrarunners website:

As reported at the IAU website by RD John Metz:


Steve Peterson, 43,M,Lafayette, CO, USA 148.13 miles - OAW
Sumie Inaguki, 39,F,Kasagai, AI, JAPAN 136.69 miles - OAF


Akihiro Inoue, M,40, Kokobunji, Tokyo, JAPAN 70.0 miles - OAW
Michelle Barton, F,34, Laguna Nigel, CA, USA 69.0 miles - OAF

24-Hour Relay Team

The Trotters 178.01 miles - OAW

--Constance Karras

Worldrunner Rosie Swalepope: An Update

A few months ago I posted a story about Rosie Swalepope, the Welsh woman currently attempting to run around the world.

At Rosie's website, Rosie's son James keeps us posted on his mother's progress. Go to:

According to James' post dated 12/13/05, his mother arrived in Golovin, Alaska, USA this past weekend after leaving the friendly town of White Mountain, Alaska on Friday 12/7/05. She had a warm welcome awaiting her from the schoolchildren in White Mountain. James states:

"Hi everybody,

I am delighted to report that Rosie has made it to White Mountain at 2:05pm on December the 5th, 2005. She was met down on the river, by the school children, who made a banner to greet her, I would like to thank everyone involved for this wonderful welcome, particularly Andrew Haviland the school principal in White Mountain and also Fred Ross and Dean Rushruk who went out to meet Rosie twice to deliver her new sledge and again to bring out some hot foot. Regards, James"

So what's next for Rosie as she makes her way through Alaska?

"My dearest wish anyway, is just to do a complete circle of the earth, planned to keep me on as much land mass as possible, This is the coldest, hardest, most fascinating way, and involves almost 7,000 miles of Russia and Siberia. I shall go across Europe through Holland, Germany, Poland and Moscow before hitting the Trans Siberian Railway route. Then go to the Bering Straits, Alaska, America, Canada, Greenland, Iceland, Ireland, Scotland and England, before returning to the start and finishing line at Tenby, my home in Wales. It will be my world voyage on two feet."

Why is Rosie running around the world?

"The death of my husband Clive from prostate cancer last year, taught me more than anything about how precious life is, How short it can be, that you HAVE to grab life, do what you can while you can, and try to give something back. I'll be trying to raise awareness of the following very special small charities - to represent the world:-

The Prostate Cancer Charity
The Siberian Railway Cancer Hospital in OMSK
The Kitezh Community for Orphan Children Orphanage, the hope of the future of European Russia through its children
The Nepal Trust that achieves so much with almost no money, in the Hidden Himalayas.
I am extremely grateful for the generosity of my family and friends, without their help and faith I could not succeed."

I'll be thinking of you as I am surrounded by my loved ones this holiday season, Rosie.

(all quotes by Rosie from her website)

--Constance Karras
Cedar Lake, USA

Badwater: Apps Accepted in January for World's Toughest Foot Race

AdventureCORPS Presents News & Views From Death Valley and Beyond

For Immediate Release

Badwater Ultramarathon 135 mile running race

Applications Accepted in January for World's Toughest Foot Race

Globally recognized as the toughest race of its kind, the July 24-26, 2006 Badwater Ultramarathon is a pure athletic challenge of athlete, shoes, and support crew versus a brutal 135 mile stretch of highway, a hellish environment of up to 130 degrees, and a sixty hour time limit. From the start line in the bowels of Death Valley to the finish line high on Mt. Whitney, this one-of-a-kind foot race offers the promise of a supremely personal achievement along with international accolades for those who rise to the occasion.

A true "challenge of the champions," the Badwater Ultramarathon pits up to 90 of the world's toughest athletes, runners, triathletes, adventure racers, and mountaineers against one another and the elements. For those whose finish in less than forty-eight hours, their reward is the coveted Badwater belt buckle.

The 29th Anniversary Badwater Ultramarathon is, and always has been, an invitational race. Applicants will be considered purely upon their race application and its specific written merits. The selection process for the next edition takes place January 3-24, 2006.
It is anticipated that the 2006 race field will include women and men from a dozen or more countries and at least two dozen American states, veterans and rookies, as well as physically challenged athletes. All applicants must meet the minimum qualifying standards prior to submitting an application.

The official charity of the race is Challenged Athletes Foundation. Sponsors include Kiehl's since 1851, Injinji, E-CAPS, and Hammer Nutrition.

Visit for all the info and to apply to the race.

--Constance Karras

Zane Grey - The "Toughest " 50 Mile Trail Race Apps

Applications are now being taken online for The Zane Grey 50 Mile Trail Race, which takes place along Arizona's Highline Trail on April 29, 2006, and is considered by ultramarathoners to be the toughest of its kind. For race app, photos of last year's race, and other information, go to:

Here's what two elite ultramarathoners had to say about their finishes in last year's race (read their full race reports at the website listed above):

"I was less than two miles into the Zane Grey Highline 50 mile Trail Race and had already traveled off the trail a half dozen times, twisted my ankle and was breathing way too hard." --Ian Torrence

"Going into this race I figured I would finish in 13:30, no problem...LOL, WRONG!!!"--Catra Corbett, aka "Dirt Diva"

And if that's not enough, an excerpt from the Zane Grey website chronicling the history of the Highline Trail states:

"An article in the July 1989 issue of Arizona Highways suggested that it would take four to seven days to hike the trail from end to end."

Step by Step,

Constance Karras :)

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Tough but Ultra-Rewarding

New Webmaster needed for 6-day race website

WEF 1st Jan 06, the Cliff Young Australian 6-day race website at will require a new Webmaster to continue operating the site. It's not a paid position, but the new webmaster can gain the satisfaction that he is helping to promote the premier multi-day race in Australia.


* Web authoring knowledge and previous experience in operating a "file manager" system.
* Knowledge and appreciation of Ultrarunning (or ability to learn)
* Ability to be able to be at Memorial Square, Colac for the week of the race or to be close to email/fax for the duration of the race and put race updates up in a timely manner.
* Knowledge of and ability with image reduction software
* Ability to be able to work with Committee Members (Publicity Officer) in putting press releases and other information on the web site in a timely manner

The web site is a 12 month of the year concern. It has the ability (as proven in 2005) to be a GREAT publicity vehicle for the 6-day race and for Colac in general. It could be a wonderful opportunity for someone trying to build their work resume up with proven web site experience. If you are interested, please email Phil Essam on



The drive up to Mt Hotham at 20km an hour in thick fog, stopping frequently to see which way the road was turning should have been an indication of what the weather held in store for the inaugural Mt Feathertop Skyrun, a 50 km circuit for the tough men and a leisurely jaunt for those only tuff enough for the 30km out and back course in one of the best Alpine running areas in Australia.

15 runners started on Saturday 3rd December with four completing the 50 km course in horrendous conditions which included temperatures at 4C, strong winds, poor visibility, rain and snow ,while 10 runners completed the 30 Km run to the summit of Feathertop and back to the snug warmth of the Trapdoor Ski Lodge and its warm roaring fire.

Prior to the run, the briefing covered off a range of safety issues but deliberately omitted to warn about the dangers of snakes - it was to cold for them to be out.

Runners set off at a brisk pace along the road for 5 km from Hotham Heights to the start of the Razorback. Then it was into single track running with stupendous views of the clouds - this was a real sky run - visibility was all of 20 metres. Runners quickly settled into their stride and spread out over the length of the Razorback with the front runners meeting the slower runners on their descent from the summit of Mt Feathertop. It was great to see the tough men speed down the steep descent before disappearing into the mist. Of the front runners, two - Brett Worley and Ross Litherland, continued on the 50 km loop down Swindlers Spur to Dibbins hut, across Cobungra Gap for a slow and torturous ascent of Machinery Spur. Brett Worley completing the course in an amazing 6.23, as Brett later said, if he'd known where he was going, and hadn't had to check the map so often he could have shaved off 10 minutes - Next year!! Andrew Baker and Nick Thompson also completed the 50 km in 8.12 and 9 hours respectively. Such were the conditions that a "go see if Nick is OK" party refused to get out of the car at Mt Loch carpark, waiting while the wind and snow buffeted the car until Nick finally can into view chirpy as a butterfly on a spring day - it must have been his English blood!!

Dan Kirby was the first back to the lodge on the 30km loop in an amazing 3.16.28!!!, followed closely by Jules Crawshaw 3.23 and Grant Dewar 3.25. At the back of the field were Julie Flynn and Paul Ashton in 4.30.

Not to be outdone, the semi tough runners of Robyn Fletcher, Julie Flynn and Paul Ashton, worked out a novel approach to completing the 50km run - they would do it over two days. And so these intrepid heroes set off in brilliant sunshine, albeit with strong winds for a scenic run down Swindlers Spur and back up Machinery Spur accompanied by stupendous views of Mt Feathertop and the Razorback. The wildflowers were out, the bees were buzzing and you could almost forget the horrendous conditions of the day before. Needless to say they couldn't just do the standard run and as a penalty did an extra 6 km up and back along the road, creating another leg for the run.

Saturday night was a pizza and pasta pig out as runners talked about the days events and their travels - with runners from Pakistan, Nepal, South Africa, UK and Australia it was a truly international affair.

Watch for the Mt Feathrtop Skyrun coming soon in December 2006.

Special thanks to all those who participated and for AURA for supporting the event with insurance .



3 JAMES CROTTY (TAS) 8.02.33


1 ISLAND STATE 3.43.04
7 HOEY’S HEROES 4.55.24
10 PIGS CAN FLY 5.07.45
11 VEGEMITES 5.26.08
12 WATERVIEW # 1 5.44.09
14 THREESOME 6.03.04
15 HASHED OVERS 6.05.09

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

UltraMan World Championships 2005 Results

From the UltraMan website:

"The UltraMan World Championships are an athletic odyssey of personal rediscovery, as such they are the first step in the endurance challenge of being human.

Covering a total distance of 320 miles (515 kilometers) on the big island of Hawaii, they require that each participant complete a 6.2 mile (10k) open ocean swim, a 261.4 mile (421k) bike ride, and a 52.4 mile (84k) ultra-marathon run."


Alexandro Ribeiro, 40, Brazil ~24:32:28 (OAW)

Shannon Armstrong, 31, USA ~28:03:34 (OAF)

Team Bourne, USA ~27:19:13 (Relay)

For full results go to:

--Constance Karras :)

Big Dog 50k Trail Run Results - 11/29/05

Final results of the Big Dog 50k Trail Run in Ruston, LA held on November 29, 2005:


1. Anthony Martin, M, 36, LA, 4:53:08 - OAW
2. Kyle Klipping, M, 42, LA, 4:57:01
3. Herb Jarrel, M, 61, TX, 5:23:12
4. Danny Foster, M, 36, TX, 5:37:00
5. Fay Mendoza, F, 39, TX, 5:41:58 - OAF
6. Rob Glaze, M, 40, LA, 6:21:48
7. Lee Topham, M, 64, TX, 6:27:47
8. Malissa Tremont, F, 39, TX, 6:30:41
9. Duane Lewis, M, 50, LA, 6:56:58
10.Jon Tremont, M, 41, TX, 7:34:58
11.Paul Christopher, M, 46, LA, 7:38:17
12.Kerri Christopher, F, 49, LA, 7:38:18
13.Kristina Vaska-Haas, F, 45, LA, 7:44:31
14.Adrienne Gabriel, F, 50, LA 7:44:32
15.Eugene DeFronzo, M, 69, CT 8:45:00

18 starters 15 finishers

--Constance Karras :)

Stu Sherman: Making Lemonade out of Lemons

What makes a "champion?" Exceptional physical performance? Mental toughness? Or does it have something to do with a lack of self-pity and deciding to view experiences as positive, especially when they don't go as planned?

Enter Stu Sherman. Despite suffering a terrible fall and breaking his leg while running on pace for a top ten finish in this year's Santa Barbera 9 Trails 35 Mile Endurance Run on November 26, 2005, he decided to make lemonade out of lemons.

From Luis Escobar's website:

"Over the years, Stu has finished the Santa Barbera 9 Trails 35 Mile Endurance several times. Like all of us Stu has encountered good days and not so good days. But like a true ultra distance runner Stu is never discouraged, always optimistic, ready for the next adventure, ready to take responsbility for this own actions and decisions. This year Stu was positioned for a top ten finish when disaster struck him down. On Saturday during the race, Stu fell off the Cold Springs Trail, he cut his knee open and broke his leg! Stu did not look to place blame, Stu did not cry about the race he was about to lose. Like a true distance athlete (with the help of his fellow competitors who unselfishly gave their race time) Stu scrambled back on to the trail, bloody and in pain he limped back up the Cold Springs Trail to the Gibraltar Aid Station. From there he was transported to the hospital where after a couple of hours he was treated. After the hospital Stu found his way back to the Cater Start/Finish area. He did not come back to complain about the hazardous trail or the trail markings. He came back to turn in his bib number and DNF as requested.
He came back to encourage his fellow runners. He came back to support the race. They say that "competing does not build character, it reveals it." (my emphasis) On Saturday, Stu Sherman was revealed for what he really is. Stu Sherman is a genuine ultra distance athlete. Stu represents what it means to be an ultra runner. We can all learn a lesson from Stu Sherman."

To see Stu's comments to his coach, Lisa Smith, go to Luis Escobar's website:

For full race results, go to:

Know someone who makes lemonade out of lemons? Send your story to Phil Essam at

Constance Karras :)

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Two Bays Trail Run - 27th Nov

by Kevin Cassidy

“A Ten Year Wait”

Few would be aware that a Two Bays Trail Ultra was originally planned for February 1996 as a result of some exploratory running from John Harper, a keen ultra runner at the time. Deciding that an out and back crossing of Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula would make an ideal course, John set about organising an official race. Sadly, a paltry three entries [which included Kelvin Marshall and I] was insufficient for anything to get off the ground.

It’s now barely three years since my first visit to the trails of the Mornington Peninsula National Park that have captivated me beyond description. For as long as time has existed, Melbourne’s runners have been heading east to the Dandenong Ranges oblivious to the insurmountable beauty that lies just an 80 minute drive south of the CBD.

Running the trail in August with Brendan Mason was the catalyst that reignited the idea of a race. We had barely cooled down at Cape Schanck when the November date was decided upon and word spread rapidly via the “coolrunning” website. A “reconnaissance” run across the course with Sydney visitor, Sean Greenhill, took place just three weeks prior and all was ready for the first ever “Fat Ass” style Two Bays Trail Ultra.

A good sized field looked to be on the cards as I headed down the Peninsula Freeway passing a couple of temporary road signs advertising the Australian Open Golf Tournament and a local “Pet and Pony” show. It was great to see so many faces, both old and new. A total of 27 runners had gathered at the Dromana boat ramp on the Nepean Highway at the 32km mark of the Frankston to Portsea course, but their was to be no running down the highway to Portsea today. After a group photo, our intrepid and outstanding gathering vanished into the bush, picking up the trail that rises up the highly prominent mountain known as Arthurs Seat. On the other side of the Peninsula, 28 kilometres away, Cape Schanck lay in wait as the final destination for 18 runners while the other nine remained determined to complete the double crossing.

Kelvin Marshall soon bolted to the lead in an action that had Peter Bignell quietly asking “What are the chances of Kelvin getting lost today?” An expectant smile was all I mustered in reply. The ascent quickly afforded the spectacular view of the Southern Peninsula and Port Phillip Bay before the rapid descent down to McClarens Dam and the small negotiation of some of Rosebud’s back streets. It was at this point that Kelvin came charging up behind me complaining of having already taken two wrong turns!

The course then took in a few kilometres of an agreeable dirt road before leading into the lush green forest that is home to much wildlife, twisting trails and numerous creeks and waterways. I had been running for about two hours when the sound of approaching feet had me glancing back in surprise. Yes indeed, it was Kelvin again after a third wrong turn!

Approaching the Boneo Road crossing at 22km, the first sight of Bass Strait greets your line of vision and what an arresting sight it is. The six kilometre stretch to Cape Schanck twists along the cliff tops providing spectacular and rugged views of Bushrangers Bay and the prominent rocky outcrop that is the cape. Reaching Cape Schanck is a sense of accomplishment all on its own and I arrived to the greeting of several 28km runners enjoying a form of post run relaxation! Over the years, I have become accustomed to the sight of ugly sweaty bodies around the ultrarunning scene, so imagine my delight to be greeted by the family of Race Director, Brendan Mason. Brendan’s lovely wife and two young children were tirelessly serving up fruit cake and drinks in the most welcoming of manners.

Knowing that Robert Boyce was only minutes ahead of me, I attacked the return journey with haste and pushed solidly, constantly thinking that he may appear around the “next” corner. Running out of the bush and onto Hyslops road, I had a clear view of over a kilometre yet still no sight of Robert, I appeared to have the trail all to myself. With barely 10 kilometres remaining, I basically gave up trying to reel him in. I struggled on back to McClarens Dam and slowed to a walk up the treacherously long climb over Arthurs Seat. The slower pace was to prove irritating as it allowed numerous flies to settle on my face, neck and a variety of other places. One even wished to crawl up my nose. I quickly sank into that annoyed state that comes with a prolonged encounter with flies. In tired frustration, I doggedly swiped and swatted only to have them move casually out of arms reach, wait patiently until I stopped my ridiculous thrashing, then land back in the exact same positions. One particularly persistent little fly decided to explore my right ear. I took a huge swing at him in a manoeuvre that wasn’t particularly clever on my part for two reasons. Firstly, I almost gave myself a severe form of concussion. Secondly, the fly managed to escape harm by taking refuge deep into the ear canal! I freaked out in an increasingly hopeless manner as my ear buzzed furiously while trying desperately but unsuccessfully to remove it with my little finger. Eventually, a small stick proved useful in the completion of the surgical removal.

With freshly cleared ears, I descended down the final kilometres without missing the opportunity to take in the glorious birds eye view of the rich blue waters of the bay. With a summer of swimming events almost upon us, I looked forward with relish to reacquainting myself with this desirable aquatic resource.

The big surprise as I finished was that my attempt to catch Robert Boyce proved completely futile as he still hadn’t arrived. Later, he appeared from the south coming up the highway, an obvious wrong turn being the culprit. Although tired, his spirits soon sparked up when his car radio delivered the Cricket score. Apparently, the Australian team had scored three googlies and a duck since the last meal break and the excitement was at fever pitch.

The success of the inaugural Two Bays Trail Run was a credit to the unwavering efforts of Brendan Mason. He produced course instructions, delivered water drops to various points and had chalk marks on all the corners.

Despite a lengthy wait that consumed a large chunk of my adult life, the fishburger from the local takeaway barely hit the sides of my stomach as I meandered home.

Western States 2006 Lottery Results

--Constance Karras

Monday, December 05, 2005

Addison UltraCentric 24/48Hr Run 2005 Results/Photos

48 Hour
Mark Henderson, TX - 136.29 - OAW

24 Hour

Mark Syrine, MN - 121.01 - OAW
Barbara Hitzfeld, TX - 111.30 - OAF

Full race results:

Race photos:

--Constance Karras :)

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Stan Miskin article - Herald Sun - 4th Dec 05

Two chances to represent Australia on World Stage

Australian runners now have two opportunities to represent their country on a yearly basis. This is at the 100km level and 24hr level. A check of the IAU website at will reveal more details. We already have a good team of runners at the 100km level who are more than capable of mixing it on the World stage but our stocks at the 24hr are very low.

Unfortunately we have a handful of runners in the past 2 years that have run 200km plus in a 24hr event. This is barely enough to make our presence felt on the world stage at 24hr races. I believe though this could change. I know there are over a dozen runners in Aust at the moment that would be capable of doing over 200km and I know a couple of those runners could do over 250km if they only believed in themselves. 100 miles in 24hrs should not be the benchmark for good Ultra runners competing in 24hr Events.

This also extends to the 6 day events as well. Our multi day runners have improved in leaps and bounds in the last few years. There are now a few of the multi day runners that are capable of doing over 700km and being competitive around the world and at our own 6-day race in Colac.

So how about it ultra runners of Australia? We now have some GOALS to aim for. Let's show the world what we are made of!

This was a personal comment only


Barbara Szlachetka has passed away. She died, in her home in Hamburg in the circle of her most beloved ones around 11:41 a.m. on November 24th, 2005, exactly the way she had prayed and wanted.

The German International 24-Hour Ultramarathon Champion of the year 2003 (211.990 km) and European Record Holder 48 H Road (348.915 kms, Cologne 2003) started to run in the fall of 1997 because of her love for me. Only four weeks after her first marathon in Dorsten-Lembeck, she entered her first race beyond the marathon distance at Georgsmarienh FCttener Null (50 K trail).

Also in her rookie year in June 1998, she became the German Champion in the 24-hour event in the 40-44 age group.

Barbara Szlachetka set her first Polish Record at her first 48-hour race in Cologne in 1999 (251kms). Later on, she established two Polish records in 12 hours, the latest in 2004 (118.089 kms). Altogether she set 3 Polish National Records in 24 Hours, two of them on the road, the latest being 211.990 kms (2003). Her 24-Hour Polish National Track Record (2001) stands at 203.403 kms. Furthermore she set 6 Polish National Records in 48 Hours, 3 times on the road (PB 348.915 kms),
twice indoors (PB 315.948 kms) and once on the track (PB 304.000 kms Course Record Dallas Ultracentric). The 72-Hour National Record set by Basia is 404.576 kms. She is the owner of all those records even today.

Beginning in October 2000, in her third year of ultramarathon running, up to the time of her cancer she was a member of the official Polish National 24-Hour Ultramarathon Team under the patronage of the Polish Athletic Federation (PZLA) and represented Poland at the European Championships in Uden (2000), Apeldoorn (2001, 5th place), Uden (2003), and at the World Championships in Verona (Track, 2001, 11th place) and in Uden (2003).

In addition, Barbara Szlachetka won the bronze medal at the IAU 48-Hour Indoor Championship in Brno in 2000. Her 284.053 kms was recorded as an Age Group Indoor World Record. She took third, also at the IAU 48 Hours World Cup Indoor 2001 (with 315.948 kms).

In 2003, Barbara finished the Spartathlon on 3rd as best European woman in 31:50:23 behind two Japanese runners.

In July 2004, a few days before the 48-hour race in Cologne, she was taken to the hospital with acute abdominal pain and was diagnosed withadvanced colon cancer in Hamburg, Germany.

In spite of the 50 chemotherapy treatments and other interventions (like portal vein embolisation in October 2004), up to July 2005 she completed 24 marathons and three ultramarathons on a noncompetitive basis, "just for fun", which meant marathons 1-2 hours longer than before her cancer diagnosis.

Running meant LIFE for Barbara. During her runs she was invigorated and forgot about her illness for hours.

She ran her last ultramarathon (51.4 kms) at Au=DFenalster, in Hamburg on July 10, 2005, which she enjoyed up to the last step. It was her 336th "marathon +", namely her 57th ultramarathon in addition to her 279marathons.

Basia completed her last running steps of about four kilometers at Kaltenkirchen Marathon on August 14th, 2005 while accompanying me to the finish line of my 1000th marathon. She did these final steps with the same motivation as the first in 1997 - her love for me and desire to be together.

Unfortunately, her wish to run with me the whole distance was not possible at that point any more.

One day, before that, she was awarded the honorary membership in the 100 Marathon Club of Germany. Additional information on Barbara Szlachetka, "our running blondie", can be found at her trilingual German-Polish-English) website (not updated) or at (daily updated since August 2005).

The funeral took place on Thursday, December 1st, in Czernica, 20kms south of Wroclaw, Poland. Barbara's wish to have as many of her peers from the running community present as possible to send her on her way to her final resting place had become reality: There had been more than 400 people: her family and most beloved friends, her neighbors and finally her running-friends from all over Poland, Germany and Czech Republic.

Dear Basia, you now have finished your longest race with all your grace and charisma. Thank you for all the experiences and the endless love you
have shared with your running friends and me.

Christian Hottas

P.S. This text has been published at and

P.P.S. In lieu of flowers, please send contributions for the tuitions of
Barbara's children, Kasia and Krzysiu.