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Big Bend Ultra Run 2013 Results – David Brown Sets New 50 km Course Record and Kayla Campasino Outruns the Boys in the 25 km

On January 20th, Big Bend National Park in southwest Texas hosted the Big Bend Ultra within the naturally stunning grounds of the park. Beautiful running conditions greeted over 200 runners to a 50 km or 25 km point-to-point, or 10 km out-and-back adventure on non-technical terrain which allowed plenty of opportunity to soak up the surrounding beauty that contains the largest section of roadless public land in Texas.

James Glasscock - Started the race concept while training for the Atacama Crossing and came to Big Bend to run in the desert. (Photo: ©Shanda Schneider


50 km

Men’s Race

The experienced and accomplished David Brown and Eric Gilbertson put together some spicy efforts to be the only sub-4 finishers in the race. David was able to average a 7 min/mile pace to separate from Eric while setting a new course record in 3:40:00!

David Brown after his record setting effort. (Photo: ©Shanda Schneider

Eric cruised in for second.

Top 5 male

  1. David Brown – 3:40:00
  2. Eric Gilbertson – 3:53:50
  3. Neil Smith – 4:07:19
  4. Bryan Lewis – 4:20:22
  5. Bryon Adams – 4:27:18

Women’s Race

Jacqueline Peppler finished in just over five hours to win the female scamper in 5:00:48!

A week after her Bandera 100 km finish, Rachel Ballard earned second place honors.

Leslie Hempfling finished third and shared her first-time impressions of the course.

“The course is a little deceptive. If you look at the map, it shows a slow upward grade for the first 2.5 miles and then it looks like it is all downhill. There are plenty of great, fast, downhills, but more flats and small hills than were expected. It is basically a jeep road with several canyons along the way (I must admit to spending a lot of time looking up for mountain lions as I ran in the canyons!) and rocky crossings. No single track. The great thing about the course is because it is the desert and you can see forever, you always have other runners in your eyesight. On other courses there is a very real chance that you are running solo for 90% of the race. It is not a technical course, so it is the perfect course to turn up your tunes or to just tune out in the silence. After you get past the first 2.5 miles, you are flying downhill until about mile 11. Then the course is “rolling” until you get to the end where you encounter a very steep final hill to reach the finish line. Definitely a race that should be on everyone’s list!”

Top 5 female

  1. Jacqueline Peppler – 5:00:48
  2. Rachel Ballard – 5:04:51
  3. Leslie Hempfling – 5:13:39
  4. Jillian Compton – 5:33:57
  5. Nyleva Corley – 5:40:044
Complete 50 km results

25 km

Women’s Race

3:11 road marathoner, Kayla Campasino, wasn’t just in a race for the female win…but the overall! Kayla took it to the boys and won the overall in 1:46:09, setting a new 25 km course record!

Kayla Campasino winning the 25 km overall! (Photo: ©Shanda Schneider

Gretchen Sanders led the strung out chasers for second.

Top 5 female

  1. Kayla Campasino – 1:46:09
  2. Gretchen Sanders – 2:05:51
  3. Katie Visco – 2:09:21
  4. Marianne Garvey – 2:15:55
  5. Kate Ferguson – 2:18:39

Men’s Race

Lee Simmons created a seven minute gap from the lead chaser, Andre Olivier, to win the male race in 1:49:39!

Andre was alone in second.

Top 5 male

  1. Lee Simmons – 1:49:39
  2. Andre Olivier – 1:56:49
  3. Nathan Jenkins – 2:01:11
  4. Bart Stevens – 2:02:59
  5. Steve Ehrman – 2:03:44

Complete 25 km results

10 km

Men’s Race

Patrick Hillery was able to create a small 30 second gap on Jerome Sicard to win the male race in 38:49!

Male winner Patrick Hillery (Photo: Holland Lawerence / ©Overland Race Management

Top 5 male

  1. Patrick Hillery – 38:49
  2. Jerome Sicard – 39:19
  3. Caleb Sullivan – 45:46
  4. Thai Eckley – 46:29
  5. Ricardo Celaya – 48:14

Women’s Race

Rose Hillery (male winner’s younger sister) finished 5th overall at age 12 and won the female scamper in 47:06!

Female winner Rose Hillery (Photo: Holland Lawerence / ©Overland Race Management

Beth McDonald led the chase group for second.

Top 5 female

  1. Rose Hillery – 47:06
  2. Beth McDonald – 52:54
  3. Alejandra Benavides – 53:51
  4. Jennifer Walter – 54:14
  5. Maggie Hillery – 54:31

Complete 10 km results

The Tough-as-Nails Award

The final finishers of an ultra distance event are some of the toughest athletes that are willing to stick with it to the best of their current ability and cross that darn finish line.

The Tough-as-Nails award recipient:

  • Royce Brown completed the 50 km adventure in 9:30:45!

Race Reports

  • “That was it; the plan was set. Time to live in the moment, put conservatism aside and find out what this body can do.” by Chris @ Chris Wristen
  • “354 feet of elevation gain isn’t mountain climbing, but imagine pushing 100+ pounds up a rocky trail the height of a 35 story building” by Kain Family @ Kellisa’s Path

Special thanks to Leslie Hempfling, Lee Dunkelberg, Big Bend Ultra, Shanda Schneider, and Overland Race Management for their gracious support with this article.

Check out the TALON Race Guide

There are 150+ regional trail/ultra races in the TALON Race Guide. Be sure to check it out if you are looking for the most complete list of events in Texas, Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and New Mexico. New events are always being added.

Be active – Feel the buzz!

David –


About the author

David Hanenburg David Hanenburg is the passionate dirt-lovin' creator of Endurance Buzz and has been playing in the endurance sports world since 2000 after knockin' the dust off of his Trek 950 hardtail thanks to a friend asking to go ride some local dirt. In 2007 he ran his first ultra on the trails and fell in love with the sport and its people. For more information on David's endurance sports journey, check out the About page.

3 Responses to “Big Bend Ultra Run 2013 Results – David Brown Sets New 50 km Course Record and Kayla Campasino Outruns the Boys in the 25 km”

  1. on 08 Feb 2013 at 8:05 pm Jacki

    That was a super fun race! different than what I expected, but really fun!

  2. on 10 Feb 2013 at 9:05 pm David Hanenburg

    Hey Jacki – Glad you had a fun time! What surprised ya?

  3. on 13 Feb 2013 at 3:14 pm Dave L

    That was my first Ultra, and I thought it was a great race. Much like someone else noted, don’t be deceived by the course profile and description of the course as fast. The profile makes it look mostly downhill after the first ~3 miles. Lots more rolling than I expected. My GPS quit on me right at the start, so it was frustrating to not know how far I’d run. The aid station folks, while awesome, didn’t REALLY know what mile they were. The guys at the out/back aid station said they were at 19/21 miles (depending on whether out or back). They said the next one was about 4 miles up the trail. Sure enough, about 45 minutes I came to the next one, and the volunteers there said they were the mile 23 station. Messed with my head, it did! I met GREAT folks on the trail, both running and volunteering. Surprised that 150 registered, yet only 100 ran. Tied for 31st thanks to Daniel M pushing me at the end!