Silver Rush 50 -> Leadville 100 (recap)

Completed the Silver Rush 50 for my first time last weekend; ended up being one hell of a ride. My goal was sub 5 hours and I came in right at 4:59.00, sitting at 4.06 w/kg. Took some risks on the descent but am happy it paid off. I was lucky to grab entry into the 100 through the onsite lottery, so looking forward to starting in the green corral to shoot for sub-9 in August. Though, based on my finishing time at the 50, looks like i’ll need a near-perfect day to pull it off.

The course itself was harder than I imagined it would be; there’s just no way to simulate the level of effort and body bashing that a rocky, chunky, undulating course like that delivers. For anyone considering the 50 in the future, sweet spot is the name of the game. I found monitoring my effort at elevation borderline fascinating and frustrating - never did I feel like my legs were working too hard, but my heart rate told me otherwise. Spent the first 1.5 hours between 168-174 bpm, but I felt as if I was sitting at a moderate tempo. Finished the near 5 hour effort with an average heart rate of 157, which includes the ~12 mile descent from mile 38 - 50. I was pushing hard the entire time, but rarely felt myself surge except to remain on my line during the more technical climbs.

Eating was more difficult than I imagined, and I managed to remain entirely fueled from a combination of 3 gels, a sleeve of shotblocks, 6 scoops of Scratch mix between my bottle and camelback, and one bottle refill at the aid station with a sashet of Maurten. My breathing was so labored on the climbs and flats that I found it almost painful to skip a breath to drink or chew, so I ended up using the hike-a-bike sections to get my heart rate down to high aerobic in order to consume.

Last note: I ran a new-to-me setup of Vittoria Mezcal 2.35/2.2’s and absolutely loved them. Never an issue with traction and the rolling resistance made my bike feel brand new. I absolutely railed the final descent following the wheel of someone with greater skill than I, and had confidence in my chosen lines all the way down. Planning on riding these for the rest of the year.

Does anyone have experience going from Silver Rush to Leadville, and any advice they can offer between monitoring expectations between the two? Planning to continue with some sweet spot and threshold work for the next 3 weeks leading to the 100, with at least two big endurance days in the saddle (6+ hours).


Congrats on your race and getting into the 100. There’s a ton of recent discussion on SR50 → LT100 pacing that was recently merged into the main Leadville thread, just look up the thread some: Leadville 2021 Thread - #123 by Cascade27

You and I had very similar finish times at the 50. Were you following someone in a green Lifetime kit by chance?