Brisbane Trail Ultra records broken in scorching conditions




Wow what a weekend! In conditions that were brutal with the temperature reaching over 30 degrees on the course on we still watch in amazement when 4 records fell across our 10 events. We found the most stunning trails in the region, taking our runners to the Brisbane Hinterland Virgin Rainforest, really special and unique places that vent most Brisbanites have never heard of or let alone seen.

The Brisbane Trail Ultra course is beautiful and brutal, the course has it all, steep climbs, a few stairs, loose descents, technical trails, sweeping goat tracks, a few long fire trails and of course a bit of road at the end to bring you into the Red Bull Party finish line that was proudly supported by Newstead Brewing Co. If you have a weakness in your running skills will be found and punished. Which many runners found out on the course.

We know we are the toughest in Queensland, our ITRA/UTMB points prove this, it’s why we’ve tried so hard to make sure you get the biggest bang for your buck on our course and get you prepared for other prestigious events in Australia and World Wide. 

Photo supplied
Watching the records fall across the 4 events blew us away. It just proves that the talent in Queensland, Northern Territory and South Australia is getting better event with the COVID19 destruction to this years racing calendar. It was an exciting day of trail racing at the Brisbane Trail Ultra, we tested Track Me Live GPS trackers on our BTU110 and BTU100Mile athletes which was a huge success, and we popped them on our elite BTU60 and BTU30 runners so we could stay ahead of the game and also warn support crews, check point staff, photographers and medics on the course about the location of our runners. The GPS trackers was an awesome tool for our ultra runners and will be utilised again for our event in 2021. We also trialed live tracking too which was a massive success for the event with 20 timing mats on the course giving our officials and supporters regular splits on the course throughout the event. Check out the live tracking links below to see who the event unfolded. 
Saturday 4th October
BTU100 Mile runners kicking off at 05:00am in a wave together, we had a 60% drop off due to Covid 19 in the miler event and 40% drop off on average across the other events. This did not stop us from putting on an amazing event for the Queensland, NT and SA trail running community. BTU110 5:30am start in waves of 10, every 5 minutes for 30 minutes, then the BTU60 08:00 start in waves of 10 for 5 minutes and were all running by 8:40am. The wave times helped us manage the runners social distance at the start line, check points and finish line locations. We had loads of hand sanitiser and antiseptic wipes, Cora and I marvelled that it wasn’t that much different from our hygiene last year as we both already practice a high level of hygiene at our event. We just had it official with signage and followed closely the contact tracing and signing in of support crew for each check point, start and finish line. 

2019 BTU100Mile winner Keiran O’Brien was back for more, with the Blackall100 Record Holder Ryan Crawford also toeing the line next to 2019 4th Place Noelis Rheault, with Canadian born South Australian runner Damien Espinase. The womens’ race we had young gun super start Jacqui Bell, she was the only female brave enough to take on the BTU100Mile challenge. The males ran closely together with Ryan Crawford leading into CP1, yet missed the turn around at the check point, actually ran straight past me at the time, I just through he needed to use the toilet, yet returned past me saying he lost the trail adding 100m onto his race, this allowed for Kieran and Noelis to jump ahead of him and Damien to catch him. Jacqui, looked relaxed coming into CP1, chatting away to the other BTU100 Mile runners. 

At the same time the BTU110 was off and running with Hayley Teale leading the women’s event with Carol Robertson stepping up from the BTU60 to gain the rare 5 ITRA/UTMB Points for a completion of the distance, with Andrew Dey, Tom Brimelow, Aaron Dower, Paul Pettit racing together until Mount Nebo - Jolly’s Lookout section out and day where Andrew Dey pulled away from Tom, making the most of his local knowledge. We knew Andrew was going to be in for a chance as a few weeks prior to the event he was smashing the STRAVA segments around the Mount Nebo Section of the course. 

At 08:00 the BTu60 runners took off with local legend Ben Duffus leading Anderson Moquiuti (AKA Ando) and Andrew Hill, Benjamin Foessel (AKA Foesse) with Toowomba runner Janet Smith, Katie Mackenzie (Kate Mac) and Rebecca Idens leading the womens event is tough conditions, as the heat was rising as the day lengthened. The BTU60 event hit the hottest areas of the course at the hottest part of the day and required a heat management strategyto overcome the potential dehydration/overheating on the course. Our remote athlete support vehicles from All American Wheeling were put to work early in the BTU event with runners pulling out after only 20km into the event with severe cramping.

With 3 ultra events running all at once we were treated to mini races all over the course that was aided by the use of GPS Trackers on our athletes. Ben Duffus in the BTU60 was first to finish, setting a new course record for the event with a stellar time of 5:21:18. Ben looked fresh on the finish line. He was soon joined by local runner Andrew Hill, then Fosse and Ando showing absolute solidarity for their fellow ultra runner deciding to run across the line together and taking our equal 3rd place.

What a way to round off the mens BTU60 Podium. 
5:21:18 Ben Duffus (Course Record)
6:48:54 Andrew Hill
7:01:26 Benjamin Foessel - Anderson Moquiuti

It was then the BTU60 women’s turn to finish, Janet Smith flew across the line in a time of 7:41.24, with Katie Mac only 11 minutes behind and Rebecca within 15 minutes of Kate Mac. It was awesome to see the strength in the women’s BTU60 distance. The course is ranked a tough 3 ITRA/UTMB points for the distance, almost as much as a 100km event and the times reflect this degree of difficulty. 
7:41:24 Janet Smith
7:52:24 Katie Mackenzie
8:05:1 Rebecca Idiens

When the kilometres get longer the Brisbane Trail Ultra gets tougher. Boasting a 5 point ranked event it is as tough as it can possibly get for an event in Australia, ranking as tough as many Europen/Asian events. Local runner Andrew Dey took out the win followed by GC runner Tom Brimelow both Tom and Andrew were stepping up to the 100km distance for the first time. What an event to pick! Aaron Dower took out the 3rd place on the podium playing it safe in the early stages of the event, over taking Paul around the 1/2 way point.  
12:02:42 Andrew Dey
12:50:25 Tom Brimelow
14:12:06 Aaron Dower

Hayley lead from the start and show her trust character by working through tough hot conditions and was joined by her daughter of 13 and a friend as a pacer to run in the final stage of the event together. She took out first place in style with Carol Roberston and Jade Davis making up the final place on the podium. 
14:44:47 Hayley Teale
17:06:24 Carol Robertson
17:23:54 Jade Davis

Now we are watching the BTU100 Mile race play out. It’s hard to imagine how one can remain controlled, focused and in race mode for so long. The BTU100Milers did it. We were treated with a stellar take over by Noelis Rheault of Kerian O’brien at the infamous Kokoda Hill. Who would dare to run up Kokoda with 136km in their legs. Noelis Rheault did this in style, running up this 30% climb encouraged by his pacer Cambo, to move into 1st place. Keiran lead the BTU100Mile. With Ryan Crawford pulling out after 85km, Noelis set himself up nicely for the BTU100Mile win. He set the record for the BTU100Mile 20:36:17. Keiran then cruised into 2nd place and new kid on the block in his first ever 100Mile event on a mountainous course Canadian born South Australian Runner Damian Espinase took out 3rd place. 

20:36:17 Noelis Rheault (Course Record) 
22:18:44 Kieran O’Brien
24:39:44 Damian Espinase

Due to the boarder restrictions and covid 19 postponement of our event our women’s field was reduced to only one classy runner. Jacqui Bell, more known for her multi-stage 4 day desert crossing events decided to take on the BTU100 Mile and step up her continuous distance to the BTU100 Mile. Jacqui managed to see Township Break twice! Enjoying her headphones a bit much after 45km. Jacqui managed an awesome Timon our course and we are super excited to see what she can do on our course in 2021. 

28:11:39 Jacqui Bell

With much of the action happening on the Saturday BTU60, BTU110, BTU100Mile we had to do it all again and get the BTU30 runners up and moving at 05:00:00. This was an exciting start to the BTU30, with the wave times being staggered 5minutes part due to covid 19 restriction we could see some tactics playing out at the start line. I was pushing them through as fast as possible within the Queensland Health Department Guidelines knowing that it was only going got get hotter out on the course the later it got. The restriction on the Friday before our event changed from 1 person every 4 square meters to 1 person per every 2 square meters. Some runners wanted to kick it off in the front wave, others were being cheeky and waiting for the front runners to take off in the hope that when we did the count back on the finish line they would be moved up into a podium position. Lachlan Jamieson chose this tactic, which threw us all at the finish line forcing us to wait a full 2 hours and 20 minutes after our final wave at 07:00am before we could announce the winner for both the female and male events. Lachlan 1st, Daniel 2nd and Oliver 3rd with Rebecca Goad 1st, Laura Veal 2nd, Tatiana 3rd.

2:19:43 Lachlan Jamieson (Course Record)
2:23:31 Daniel Buenen
2:30:27 Oliver Waddingham


2:54:12 Rebecca Goad
3:07:16 Laura Veal
3:12:38 Tatiana Marinho

Now onto the race within the race the BTU- Red Bull Climb. This event is a special add on event and part of every entry at the Brisbane Trail Ultra. Its a 1.7km hill climb from CP7- the top of the Pinnacles Trail, only a 178m vertical climb but after already so much climbing before you reach this section of the course it is one test of your VO2Max Threshold. We were blown away when we saw the record go by almost 2 minutes this year in the male event. With the BTU-Red Bull Climb taken by Luke Davison with a time of 9:15. 1st female in the BTU30 took out the female win with a time of 13:21. 


9:15 Luke Davison (Course Record)
10:33 Lachlan Jamieson
11:06 Daniel Buenen


13:21 Rebecca Goad
14:48 Tamara Trotman
15:09 Sarah O'Dwyer-Mazur

The Brisbane Trail Ultra is a logistical ultra marathon in itself of course marking, 180km of course to mark, water stations with over 3000L of water that was consumed and transported to our seven check points and 3 water stops.


Our check points were all managed by running groups or Adventure Sports Stores, Bunyaville Trail Runners CP1, K2 Base Camp CP2 mandatory gear check in and registration support, Kokoda Kids CP3, AAA racing and coaching CP4 and Mount Nebo/Mount Glorious Logistics, CP5 and Remote Water Stops, Remote Athlete Recovery All American Wheeling, CP6 Springfield Runners Group, CP7 Brisbane Trail Runners, Arnie helped with Mountain Logistics, Bernadette and Henrico helped with logistics and GPS Trackers.


Our finish line was managed by River City Runners, backed up by Red Bull Australia (Start, Finish Line and CP7 Red Bull Climb), Newstead Brewing Co supplying the free beer to every finishing runner as they crossed the line. Massive thank you to La Sportiva our official shoe sponsor for the Brisbane Trail Ultra 2020. 


We also has the First Aid Assist Medics on hand backed by 1300 Medics in the remote area’s of the national park. We were treated to amazing burgers by River Life with the BBQ and Bar open to all. The party kicked on and I had a freak out as everyone started to get loose standing up ( OMG not everyone is seated! New Covid World) , little did I know (due to setting up the event and helping out at rego) that the restriction changed again on 4pm Friday night to allow for standing and drinking in groups that were socially distanced. I could breathe a sign of relief as we really could relax and enjoy ourselves with the Covid 19 Restrictions eased.

Everyone had a great time time at our finish line at our finish line, the atmosphere was electric with the Red Bull Party Dj playing anthems into the night, burgers and chips being served around the clock. We know that when we move the line, just a little further down the path to the iconic Storey Bridge in 2021 it will be an addition to our event experience.