Phil’s Ultra Column – 7th August 2009

Posted on August 7, 2009 by

Welcome everyone to the new direction and metamorphis of Planet Ultramarathon.  This page has been going for a couple of years now and I’m very proud of what it has achieved in it’s time.  At one stage I tried to make the site become a team effort, but those who came on board didnt have the time due to work and other pursuits – probably ultrarunning.

I have also moved on as well, am actually training a bit now and some other projects that I will talk about later on in this post.  But it would be a shame to let PUM die completely, so hence from now on I promise a once a month column with some tid bits from around the Ultra world.  It may be more than monthly, but I will post something at least every four weeks. So here goes, hope you enjoy and please leave any feedback.

Good to see that ultrarunners in Ireland now have their own website.  It is at Very crisp and clean and very easy to navigate.  Their latest news includes Richard Donovan being announced as the Race Director for the Commonwealth 100km Championships (going to be a cracker of a week) and Tony Mangan’s World 48hr Treadmill record going to be recorded in the next Guinness Book of Records.  Tony is a class runner and good to see him getting some recognition. I think he will record some great distances when he steps up to the 6 day races.

The ultrarunning community have embraced Facebook in a big fashion.  It is a social networking site that connects people around the Globe.  I am now friends with Ultrarunners around the Globe and there are also many ultra groups that have sprung up for ultrarunning in general and races.  The PUM group alone has over 700 members!  Facebook is a great resource.

Talking of runners on Facebook, it is good to see that Deb DeWilliams has recovered well from her first foot operation. It was a shame when Deb had to stop her run around Australia in the Northern Territory due to a broken foot.  I’m sure she will be back in 2010 giving it another crack and she will finish it!

Australia is sending a great team to the Commonwealth Championships in the UK from the 17-20 Sep. The Men’s 24hr team includes Martin Fryer and Jo Blake who have both run over 230km in the past 12 months and Martin also ran the incredible 48hr total at Surgerre a  coupl eof months ago. The main ultra events include a 100km and a 24hr event.  You can read more about this event at

Looks like the movie about Cliff Young and the 83 Westfield Run is starting to take shape.  It has been on the drawing board for a couple of years now, but John Jarratt was talking to someone in the media during the weekand and is looking forward to playing Cliff.  Talking to the writer, they still have to work out a start date for filming, but I will keep people update with news when I find out.

I am now devoting a lot of my time to the Ultralegends web site. It is basically an online project to help record the history of our sport.  At the moment , I am scanning mainly Australian info but this will develop as the site grows.  Please visit and if you have any ultra info from years gone by, please let me know.  I am hoping that a book about the history of the sport in Australia will develop in the next couple of years.  I certainly have quite a bit of information to put in it already.

I would appreciate some feedback for next month’s column on these two subjects.  Should treadmill running be counted as an official world record by the IAU and how should we recognise and record solo runners and their great achievements? Look forward to soem response.

Keep moving forward.


7 Aug 09.