LEADVILLE, Colorado (August 22, 2016) — Clare Gallagher of Boulder, Colorado, carried Salomon colors to victory Sunday in the 2016 Leadville Trail 100, setting the second fastest women’s time in the race’s 33-year history. In her first attempt at the 100-mile distance, the 24-year-old reached the finish in 19 hours, 27 seconds, two hours faster than second-place Maggie Walsh and good for fifth overall behind Ian Sharman of Bend, Oregon, who nabbed his third Leadville men’s victory.
“I was really surprised. I couldn’t believe it, I was so excited,” says Gallagher, who trains in Boulder with the Salomon Run Club and Rocky Mountain Runners. “The last two hours were horrific. I owe so much to my support crew and my pacers. I was spent at Winfield (aid station), and my pacers were just incredible. My long-term goal is to be able to compete around the world as a professional runner, and now I could have the opportunity to do that. I’m just so happy.”
Gallagher’s running career started at Cherry Creek High School in Greenwood Village, Colorado, where she competed in cross country and track. During her college career at Princeton University, Gallagher specialized in steeplechase and cross country, but suffered a number of injuries during her four years. After graduating, Gallagher moved overseas to pursue a teaching fellowship in rural Thailand. It was then, in October 2014, that she signed up for her first ultramarathon—a 50-mile trail race in northern Thailand.
In 2016, Gallagher has earned podium finishes at the Golden Gate Dirty 30 50K in Black Hawk, Colorado, the USA Track and Field 30K National Championship in Colorado Springs, and the Aspen Power of 4 (25K) in Aspen, Colorado. The Leadville 100 was Gallagher’s first attempt at that distance, doubling her previous longest race distance of 50 miles.
The Leadville Trail 100, also known as The Race Across the Sky, is held annually on the trails and dirt roads near Leadville, Colorado. Runners climb and descend up to 15,600 feet through the Rocky Mountains, where elevations range from 9,300 to 12,620 feet during the course of the race. There is a 30-hour cut-off for the rugged out-and-back race, and roughly half of the contestants are unable to finish the race each year.
“It is really exciting to see Clare have so much success at the beginning of her ultra career,” says Josh Korn, regional marketing manager at Salomon. “Not only is she an incredible athlete, but she’s also really active in her local running community, and has done a wonderful job inspiring and motivating runners to get out there. We are thrilled to have has as part of the Salomon team.” Gallagher took her Leadville victory in Salomon S-lab Sonic shoes, a S-Lab Sense Set hydration vest, an Elevate Seamless Tank, Agile Tight Shorts, and a S-Lab Sense Visor.
About Salomon: Born in the French Alps in 1947, Salomon is committed to pushing the boundaries of mountain sports through the creation of innovative equipment that allows people to play, progress and challenge themselves in their chosen outdoor pursuits. The company produces and sells footwear, apparel and equipment for a wide variety of outdoor sports. Products are developed in the company’s Annecy Design Center, where engineers, designers and athletes collaborate to create innovative solutions that continually improve the outdoor experiences of those who see nature as a vast playground. www.salomon.com