Zach Ornelas Interview | What a Year!

Zach Ornelas won American River 50 miler just over a year ago. Then he represented the US at the IAU Trail Championships in Spain, then he  won the USATF 50 Mile Trail Championships at Tussey Mountainback. Less than two months later he finished California International Marathon (CIM) with a three minute PR and an Olympic Qualifier.

In March of this year, he clocked a 2:50 50 at Caumsett 50k Championships in New York, then cracked the top ten at the insanely competitive Two Oceans in South Africa. You’ll have to hear Zach’s description of racing strategy and mindset when he lined up against a couple thousand Africans for  an ultramarathon!

Zach Ornelas breaking the tape at 50k championships.

Zach’s done this while teaching high school full time and coaching the distance squad at his school. What has he learned running with teenagers and what do they think of  “Mr. O’s”.  accomplishments?

What records is he looking forward at attempting and what are his plans for an attempt? And stick around for his Emma Coburn story…It’s a good one!

zach ornelas
Zach Ornelas with his students

Episode Notes

Zach is coached by David Roche.

Here’s the Run Detroit store he mentioned.

Here’s our interview with Ben Gibbard.

We discussed the women’s 50k record and didn’t have the details in front of us, so here they are…Janice Klecker set the 3:13:51 mark in 1983. in Florida. I can’t find any recent attempts at it…anyone have info?

Intro music by David Rosales. |  Outro music by Matt Flaherty

Zach Ornelas hitting some gravel.

Connect with Zach Ornelas

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