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Fernie resident Abi Moore wins the Sinister 7 Ultra 2012
The Sinister 7 Ultra running race is held annually by the Full Moon Adventure Company in the Crowsnest Pass, Alberta attracting 1200 runners looking to challenge themselves on the 148km course with 5, 250m of elevation gain, whether on a relay team or solo. Yes, solo.
Starting at 7am and finishing at 10am the following day at the latest (racers have 27 hours to complete the course), teams and soloists started rolling in across the finish line at 12 hours, and continued throughout the night and well into the following morning.
While a number of runners represented Fernie on various teams, it was two soloists that had the spotlight - Mike and Abi Moore. The married duo have been training for this race in particular for nearly a year, soon after Mike recovered from completing the 148km route last year. Abi decided that if her husband was going to be out training longs hours, she had better join him or spend another summer without seeing much of him! While Abi has an impressive resume of podiums at mountain races of varying distances, her longest to date was roughly 25km.
Two weeks prior to Sinister, Mike and Abi ran the 50km trail course at Rundle's Revenge, finishing 3rd and 1st respectively. Feeling strong, the pair began their taper and geared up for the big weekend. Mike's goal was 18 hours (the previous year he injured his knee in the third leg and finished the last two legs at a near walking pace) and Abi's 21 hours and ten minutes.
Temperatures were on the rise leading up to the event, with the summer's hottest day thus far set for Saturday. Mike has had issues with heat in the past, but the duo were armed for all conditions and not deterred.
By the third leg of the race, temperatures were high and having a major impact on runners. By the fourth, Mike realized he had to make a decision as the heat was taking its toll on his body. He knew he wouldn't make his goal time, and that continuing could cause major damage, and pulled out of the race. Abi, not as affected by heat, persevered running into the darkness of the last 3 legs reaching the finish line just 1 minute past her goal time at 04:11! What is most inspiring is that unknowingly she was passed at the Transition Point just after leg 5. When she realized this going into leg 7, she bridged the ten minute gap between her and the leader, and put another ten minutes between them becoming this year's Solo Woman winner of the Sinister 7!
So what's next for this speedy duo from Fernie? They will take on the Iron Legs 50 miler this August, the 2012 National 50 mile Trail Championships! While shorter in distance, this race has nearly the same amount of vertical gain as the Sinister 7!
Big congratulations to Mike and Abi at an impressive showing at this year's Sinister 7, we look forward to following you this August!