Marty Dent Post Keppler

martykeplerWith his recent victory and course record in the legendary Kepler Challenge (60km), Martin Dent signalled his arrival to the trail running and ultra marathon circuit.

But would this be a new beginning, or was it just a brief foray? The long distance running community was abuzz with excitement of the prospect of attracting an athlete of Dent’s calibre to the sport, so I took the time to have a brief chat about what the future holds for this London Olympic Marathon representative.

When quizzed as to why he chose to take on the Kepler Challenge, Marty had several reasons.

“A friend suggested it to me. One of the Canberra guys ran there last year and enjoyed it. The previous record was held by a marathoner, so I figured the course suited me,” Dent said. “The distance wasn’t too long and it’s the premier trail race in New Zealand so I was keen to do it. The course is really nice and the whole event and area is great. The prize money was attractive too!”

In a sport where paydays are few and far between, and there are only so many races you can do a year, it’s easy to understand why he picked such an iconic race to do over one of the domestic ultras where it’s more about participation than paying for elites to race.

Now, having won the Australian Mountain Running Championship in 2013 and dominating a major global trail race, what are Marty’s thoughts on ultras?

“The longer you run, the harder it gets….It’s the first ultra I’ve finished so I have a lot of respect for the ultra guys.”

For those that aren’t aware, Marty made an attempt at the Australian 100km record earlier this year at Stromlo. After setting a blistering early pace he was forced to concede to fatigue at about 70km. But would this recent success lead to making the jump from marathons to ultras or trail running?

“No. Although I won’t be running on the track over summer, the focus will be the Commonwealth Games (Marathon). I will probably do Sydney Half Marathon in the lead up. Running another Commonwealth Games and representing Australia is a huge honour and something I would be mad to not focus on.”

Well that settles it! No ultras for Marty until after Glasgow Commonwealth Games. But the fact that he had such a good result and enjoyed the experience in his second dabble in the ultra world is a good sign for the future. Who knows, maybe in 2015 we’ll see him taking on The North Face 100 or Buffalo Stampede? Then again, it will be awesome to see Marty going head to head with the best in the world in the upcoming Commonwealth Games!