Lucy Bartholomew is one of the world's best young trail runners. She was Junior Skyrunning World Champion in Chamonix a few years ago and now runs for Team Salomon. She won the YCC (Youth Chamonix Courmayeur) at UTMB last year.
This year has seen Lucy truly come of age, she turned 21 and won the Ultra-trail Australia 100km race on her big day. She's a rising star in the ultra running world and capped off a fantastic season with a win in the Ultra-trail Cape Town 100km race.
We asked her to look back at 2017, and ahead to 2018 over a few quick questions...
What win came hardest, Ultra-trail Australia or Ultra-trail Cape Town, and why?
That's a tough one! Both had some really hard moments and I was with such strong women racing, both of whom had caught me mid-race and I had to dig deep.
I would say that I certainly put more pressure on myself for UT Australia, it was my 21st birthday, everyone was there, I had committed and promoted my run at this event very early in the year and even moved to the area to train for it. This is something I normally wouldn’t do and it was really hard to execute what I wanted to happen - especially with the late course changes. I think mentally UTA was harder, but physically UT Cape Town was harder on my body.
Interesting. Yeah, home races always come with more pressure. So, if you could only run one of those events again, which would it be and why?
These are really tough questions! I would like to return to UTA to run the original course. Next year it falls on my birthday again, so maybe I will!
But at the same time, I don’t want to touch that magical memory of the race!
Fair enough. Ok, what was your highlight of 2017?
2017 has been epic. I look back in disbelief at the places I have been, people I have met and results I have achieved. There are many highlights; wins, finishes and even some truly epic training days. I feel like I have 365 days of highlights and can't really pick one.
Ok then, what about your lowlight?
I honestly try not to see setbacks as "lowlights", just a lesson. I had some tough races but I draw upon these days a lot more later on than the good ones. I don’t see lowlights, just character building moments...
Not long now, what do you want most for Christmas?
I don’t really want anything to be honest. I’m not really a Christmasy person in terms of presents, but if I could have anything it would be for my whole family to get to come to America my big 100 mile race - the Western States Endurance Run - next year and for them to run the last 400m around the track with me.
That's an iconic event, congrats on getting a spot by the way. Ok, no gifts, but how about New Year's Resolutions, got any?
Keep being me, share the love and be a reason for people to smile. I just want to be the best version of myself.
What one aspect of your performance will you try to improve the most next year?
Nutrition! I have had some really poor races nutritionally speaking. I largely managed to get away with it and dig myself out of some pretty big holes, but I know that I'm not even touching my potential with my current lack of a decent nutrition plan in my races.
Good luck to the rest of the field when you nail that then! What are your goals for next year Lucy?
Well, I just found out that I have been allocated a bib at the Western States Endurance Run. It's a very prestigious 100 mile race in America, the grandaddy of 100 mile events really, so 2018 is all about this challenge. I am still putting together a new plan for the year with this big change in mind.