The Javelina Jundred is a social costumed 100 mile trail run party, founded by Phoenix ultrarunner Geri Kilgariff back in 2003. The 15th edition will take place on October 28-29, 2017.
Besides a lot of fun, it’s a serious race through the hot Sonoran Desert of Arizona, with a 50% dropout.
The 2017 edition will be a “Competitor” race for the Ultra-Trail World Tour that also qualifies for the Western States Endurance Run. Both the 100 miler and the 100 kilometer race are 2018 UTMB Qualifiers (4 Points).
The 22-mile rolling single track trail course comprises most of the Pemberton Trail in the beautiful McDowell Mountain Regional Park near Phoenix.
The Javelina Jundred is just one of the 28 trail and endurance running events, that Aravaipa Running is organizing across the wild Southwest. Jamil Coury founded Aravaipa Running in 2009, after inheriting the Javelina Jundred and dreaming of a trail run series & community in Phoenix. He made his dream true. Aravaipa Running is well known for their spectacular courses and superior organization. And with the help of his team, Jamil has grown this amazing “Jalloween” event into the 2nd largest 100-mile foot race in North-America.
After being the Race Director for 9 years, Jamil is currently the CEO who oversees the direction of the company. Having run over 50 ultra-marathons over the past seven years, Jamil has a lot of valuable race experience to share. All other team members are avid trail runners as well.
I had the opportunity to ask Jamil some questions about the Javelina Jundred and the running culture in Arizona:
COULD YOU GIVE US SOME INSIGHT IN THE RUNNERS COMMUNITY IN ARIZONA?
It really depends on the time of year in Arizona for best or most popular areas to run. Winter months will see more activity in Phoenix and Tucson with the Aravaipa Group Trail Run on Wednesdays topping over 100+ runners!
When it heats up in the desert during the summer months runners will migrate to the higher elevations: Prescott, Sedona and Flagstaff. There are so many trails, terrains, and great places to explore all over the state. We are very lucky to live in such a hub of outdoor activities.
WHAT ARE THE TRENDS IN TRAINING, GEAR, NUTRITION, SUPPLEMENTS?
It’s hard to pinpoint exact trends but we’re definite proponents of cross-training even just in varying where and how you run. In particular, we host group runs on the trails (mostly) but also have weekly track workouts and a few people who post about cycling, climbing, yoga etc in our Facebook Group all the time.
I would guess there isn’t a huge difference in how American’s train but there’s definitely a difference in how we race. Races in the States are less self-sufficient with little to no required-kit. This is changing a bit depending on the difficulty/danger of the terrain or weather but it’s definitely different than it is in Europe.
As far as how Arizona runners train, we are early risers in the summer to avoid the heat and are used to carrying large amounts of water or figuring out routes that allow us to find water sources! Our heat is not to be underestimated.
CAN YOU GIVE US SOME TIPS TO PREPARE FOR THE JAVELINA JUNDRED, COUNTING DOWN TO RACE DAY AND SOME TIPS FOR RECOVERY AFTER THE RACE?
Best tips for Javelina Jundred are to come prepared to have some fun, we take this race seriously but encourage our participants to have as much fun a possible. It’s definitely a party in the desert. Be prepared for some sandy and rocky sections in the exposed desert.
The temperatures are usually warm to HOT even in late October and with no shade on the course, it will zap runners of energy pretty quickly. Train in warm environments, get used to heat training and plan to drink extra during the race!
I’d also suggest training with big loops – loops can be the detriment to runners with their tent and crew right there every 20 miles or so. And there’s always a party happening at Javelina Jeadquarters so it’s hard to want to leave again on another loop. Practice makes perfect, so get used to doing loops and mentally prepping yourself to leave the party.
McMillian Running has some great options. You can get personal coaching or a weekly customized training plan. Their ultra coaches have all worked with Javelina Jundred participants.
HOW TO DEAL WITH TIME ZONES/JET LEG/DIFFERENT CLIMATE AND FOOD WHEN TRAVELING FOR THE JAVELINA JUNDRED?
What do you recommend to eat/drink before and during the race and where can they buy it?
Arrive early! Allow yourself time to get used to the desert (hydrate, hydrate, hydrate) and the time zone difference. You’ll want to catch up on some sleep and, did I mention, drink extra water!
If new or unusual food upsets your routine I’d suggest bringing a few staples with you so you have your comfort food when you need it right before a race! Also check out local options for great dining in Scottsdale and Phoenix! We have real food at our aid stations throughout the race and a few main meals including sub sandwiches and pizza. For crews we also have shaved ice, popcorn, and pizza vendors on site!
HAVE YOU GOT SOME SIGHTSEEING TIPS/TOURS/TRAILS FOR RUNNERS WHO VISIT ARIZONA?
We have so many trails to explore it’s hard to choose. However, if you’re visiting from out of the country and can only choose a few, I’d recommend heading to the Grand Canyon and at least walking along the rim!
Sedona is also a great place to visit and any of those trails are amazing to see the red rocks and cliffs that are part of this picturesque part of our state!
HOW IS IT TO ORGANIZE SUCH A SPECTACULAR RACE LIKE JAVELIN JUNDRED, AND TO BE PART OF THE ULTRA-TRAIL WORLD TOUR?
We’re very honored to be part of Ultra Trail World Tour and love being among some of the best organized races in the world. We work year-round on Javelina Jundred. While we have hosted over 150 trail and ultra events within about 30 per year, Javelina Jundred is our most work-intensive. We spend many hours preparing for this race.
Race week is crazy and it takes hundreds of volunteers and staff to get everything set up and ready to welcome over 2,000 people from around the country and the globe. The best way to connect with our community is via our Javelina Jundred Facebook Group. It’s pretty active and there are members who have run the race between 5-10 times and are capable of answering many questions!
Find out more about Javelina Jundred here
Javelina Jundred website
Registration for Javelina Jundred
Meet the team
Javelina Jundred Facebook page
More races of Aravaipa Running
Ultra Trail World Tour
Also published on Medium.