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Dirt Church Radio
93 minutes | Jul 27, 2021
Episode 153 - Chloe Wickman
Seven years ago on a trip to Brazil Chloe Wickman noticed the overwhelming explosion of body positivity and vibrancy which saw all shapes and sizes embrace colour and celebration. Wanting to capture the joy and confidence of the mulit-coloured clothing she had experienced Chloe started Zeenya Clothing. If you’ve stood on the start line of any trail run or major ultramarathon in the last few years in Aotearoa you will have seen a woman rocking Zeenya tights. Even more recently, the brand has experienced a huge lift thanks to the enthusiasm of the Zeenya community and ambassadors. We speak to Chloe about her own running journey, body positivity, community, engagement, and her experiences working in Para sport and even volunteering at the 2016 Olympics. We also draw our Crater Rim competition winner, drill down through our mailbox (including a link to an exciting virtual race) smash through the race and FKT news, and the most lyric GRE we’ve ever had. Enjoy.
73 minutes | Jul 20, 2021
Episode 152 - WUU2K 2021 Special
Kia Ora Whānau. Some would say that Gareth Thomas has enjoyed a magic run of weather in the four years that WUU2K (Wellington Urban Ultramarathon) has been run. We all hoped that 2021 would be an extension of that great weather however it was sadly not to be. Faced with difficult choices everywhere he turned, Gareth ultimately had the choice made for him by the Meteorological Service. So the whole field ended up battling the 21km course in the teeth of the most challenging conditions many had experienced. The episode starts at registration, with Eugene and Matt catching up with Gareth and Volunteer Manager, Cate Shave. We also have a catch up with Spike and Fiona Hayvice at the finish line on top of a freezing Mt Victoria. We reconvene the conversation the next day in far-drier environs (thanks, Rydges Wellington!!) to run down the race, go through results, Hardrock weekend, and all the good stuff. We also have a post-race catch-up with race director Gareth, who it would be fair to say has been through his share of professional and personal challenges over the past 12 months. Thanks Wellington for being O for Oarsome and thanks to all who shouted out on the course!! Enjoy.
94 minutes | Jul 13, 2021
Episode 151 - Stephen Redfern
Stephen Redfern decided to run a half marathon in 2014. It went well. He then ran 100km a few months later. FIVE WEEKS after that Stephen completed his first 100 mile race. From there … well. World 24 hour champs, Western States, UTMB … Stephen is the secretary of the Australian Ultra Running Association, and race director of the Unreasonable East 200 mile and Sydney 24 hour. Gosh. That’s a lot, right? Hong Kong Four Trails? You betcha. Smashing Andrew McDowall in a personal vendetta which we don’t really understand? Yup. Plus an amazing Greatest Run Ever from the TUM men’s champ. This episode is killer. Enjoy.
81 minutes | Jul 6, 2021
Episode 150 - Ruth Croft 2021
Kia Ora Whānau. 150 episodes!!! That’s like three years of Dirt Church Radio! Everything comes up gold with this one, as Matt and Eugene speak with Western States runner-up and all round LEDGUND Ruth Croft. This is an incredible conversation with an amazing human being. Ruth takes us on a deep dive into the preparation, performance, and atmosphere of Western States and talks us through her (very well deserved) recovery. We also get the chance to do our shortest Greatest Run Ever, Announce the winners (yup, you read right) of our Tarawera Ultramarathon competition, the mailbag, in which we unwittingly fire the shots in an inter-island vert war, Speed Freaks, racing, Matariki … gosh, there is a lot. To you dear listener we offer our most heartfelt thanks that you have allowed us onto the trails with you. We love what we do and being part of this incredible community only makes it all the more sweeter. See you on the trails. Enjoy.
82 minutes | Jun 29, 2021
Episode 149 - Caitlin Fielder 2021
Kia Ora Whānau. This week Eugene speaks to Caitlin Fielder about her long road back from serious injury to her course record at Tarawera 50km, her burgeoning shoe painting business, the insanity of European race courses, cheering Ruth Croft on from afar, and how cycling really is a beneficial form of cross training. We cover the big dance (Hallertau Riverhead Rampage), the OTHER big dance (Western States), take a deep dive in the awesomeness that happened in Auburn, announce our Tarawera winner (sort of) and come through with another epic Greatest Run Ever. Enjoy.
79 minutes | Jun 22, 2021
Episode 148 - Martin "Rocky" Walker
Kia Ora Whānau. This week Eugene and Matt have the distinct pleasure of speaking with Martin “Rocky” Walker of Further Faster. Rocky has been a force to be reckoned with in the outdoors scene for the last 30-plus years, making his way to Aotearoa, and setting up his outdoors store Further Faster. We have a great chat with him about his love of the outdoors, dogs, gear, racing, snow, doom metal, and beer on this episode of Dirt Church Radio. We’ve also got all the racing results you need, we look forward to Western States and we’ve got a GRE which is guaranteed to hit you right in the feels. Enjoy.
74 minutes | Jun 15, 2021
Episode 147 - Carl Read 2021
Kia Ora Whānau. Fall down twice, get up three times... That's how it goes isn’t it? This week on the pod Eugene talks to former professional Ironman and Ultraman champion Carl Read about his road to redemption and the fundamental changes he’s made to his training in the hope that he will be successful in his third attempt at the Tarawera 100 mile race. And the importance of being yourself. Enjoy.
82 minutes | Jun 8, 2021
Episode 146 - Paul Charteris 2021
Kia Ora Whānau. “For our first episode of Dirt Church Radio we are privileged to sit down with Paul Charteris, the founder of Tarawera Ultramarathon …” That was three years and 145 episodes ago. Things have changed a bit in the intervening years, but having Paul Charteris back on the podcast was even more rewarding, interesting, and engaging than the first time. We speak of life post Tarawera, the transition from trail daddy to regular dad of two children, his work with the Kawerau District Douncil on a new trail network, owning a farm cottage retreat, and his ongoing involvement in the race that took up over a decade of his life. We discuss the worldwide scene post-pandemic, the UltraTrail World Tour, UTMB, IRONMAN, a wonderful GRE and bonus Colin. Enjoy.
85 minutes | Jun 1, 2021
Episode 145 - Mark Green
Kia Ora Whānau. Lots of people say that they have run all their lives but by the time Te Anau’s Mark Green was 12 years old he had run 20 half marathons. Mark really HAS been running for nearly his whole life. After training as a physiotherapist, Mark went on to spend several years in London and Sydney working with runners to make them stronger and faster. Wanting to give their children the outdoors-based life that they had enjoyed, Mark and his wife, Kylie, moved to Wentworth Falls in the Blue Mountains, 400m from the trails that make up the UTA. Mark gets after it in a big way, having come 4th at this year’s UTA 50km, and with podiums at the Six Foot Track Marathon and Kepler Challenge, Mark embodies a love of running with a mindset to continue to strengthen and improve one’s well being. This conversation is incredible, Mark lays down the knowledge on so many levels from performance, the importance of strength training, and the downlow on some of Australia’s best races. Mark’s talk makes sense, and above that we’ve seen the fruits of Mark’s methodology up close as he trains Eugene for WUU2K. All that, and the usual Stuff You Should Know, including our very special Tarawera Ultramarathon giveaway. Enjoy.
90 minutes | May 25, 2021
Episode 144 - Elly Arnst
Kia Ora Whānau. There is trail running and then there is getting after it in the wild places. The places where no matter what, your pack will be kinda heavy, you will have a beacon with you and there will be parts of that place which could be considered “mildly terrifying” (Wright, 2021). This is where Elly Arnst thrives. From a road running background, Elly then turned to tramping in the ranges around Whanganui, seeing how far she could push herself in an allotted time limit. A fortuitous meeting with Katie Wright led to many huge adventures, including two of the three SK completions, being the first people to send the Ruahine ranges, and pacing Katie to her 2021 Tarawera victory. Not content with that, Elly just smashed the course record at Old Forest Hanmer 100. This woman has chops. As if this isn’t enough Elly also volunteers for Lansar. This is a great conversation about the joy of moving in the big country and how much fun it can be...if you take a little care. Enjoy.
93 minutes | May 18, 2021
Episode 143 - Kay Bretz
Kia Ora Whānau. Runners love routine, right? The overriding wisdom for most of us is consistency consistency consistency. Habit is an absolute strength, however habits can become just that, habit. Kay (pronounced “Kai”) Bretz moved from what he described as hobby running to the marathon relatively quickly, and stayed there for the next 15 years, always chasing his PB, consistency, control, and habit was key. The outcome was the focus, not the process. Gradually, the process became the focus, and with the aid of his coach, “mystery runs” were employed. A mystery run was just that, Kay would follow another runner with no idea of the length, speed, route of their run. One day, Kay followed his friend on a mystery run out his door and did something that he had never done before, he turned right out of his gate instead of turning left. This simple 180 degree maneuver had a profound impact on Kay’s professional, personal, and athletic life. Fast forward to the present and Kay is the author of Turn Right, his first book about his running journey. Kay has run the furthest by any Australian at a 24 hour world championship (259.67km), has raced (and won) a few multi day stage races, and is now cracking through 200 mile endurance runs in the wilds of Australia. This is an engaging conversation with a very interesting human being about the power of persistence, taking chances, and seeking your limits. Enjoy.
98 minutes | May 11, 2021
Episode 142 - Jaime Stevenson
Kia Ora Whānau.This week we have a chock full podcast for you. We run through the plethora of running events around the country, we run (ha!) through the UTMB-IRONMAN announcement, have a repeat GRE offender and for the main event have an amazing conversation with the wonderful Jaime Stevenson. Jaime is a self-confessed roadie who is dipping her toe into the trail scene. Jaime won the 2019 Alps 2 Ocean, has completed the Marathon Des Sables and was the only woman from Australasia chosen for the 2020 Spartathlon before, well … you know … put the kibosh on everything. We talk about mud, stepping outside of one’s comfort zone and reflection, coping with challenges, the importance of re-framing as it relates to experience. We discuss Jaime’s literal and figurative journey through running and the massive benefits it has for her mental and physical well being. Jaime is a qualified coach, and talks us through some of the secrets to multi-day events, we also learn how there is always more you give, soft sand can be fun, and light you can see from space doesn’t always equate with a massive crowd at the finish. Enjoy.
90 minutes | May 4, 2021
Episode 141 - The Sports Lab live show
Kia Ora Whānau.This week on the podcast Eugene and Matt bring you our DCR X Sportslab live show. We had the pleasure of speaking with Loren Abel, Vaughan Craddock, and Luke McCallum from Sportslab at Hallertau Tap Haus about all things preventative. This is a wide ranging discussion touching on injury prevention, the importance of recovery, and how small habits factored into our active lives can do so much to improve our long term wellbeing and running enjoyment. We discuss the importance of running on all surfaces, and how this can make us into a better runner. Being DCR we also have talk of aqua jogging, cease and desist letters, and how ‘light touch’ may get you through those final stages of an ultramarathon. Hot tips, audience Q & A and us explaining to some puzzled bar punters that whilst yes, it does say Church, it’s not actually,...well, you know. Enjoy.
83 minutes | Apr 27, 2021
Episode 140 - Fran McEwen
Kia Ora Whānau.This week on the podcast Eugene and Matt have a conversation with the indefatigable Fran McEwen. Where to start with Fran? She’s someone who gets things done. She’s an ultramarathon runner, but if you’d said that to her teenage self, she’d have laughed at you. After a self-described idyllic kiwi childhood in Lower Hutt, she experienced what many teenagers did, drifted away from school, activity, and home life. But she found her way back, and she not only lives out what she would once never have dreamed of, she helps others achieve that too, especially young women. She’s the founder of the Shift Foundation, a globally-recognised organisation dedicated to helping young women, she works at Sport NZ in the Active Recreative team, and she’s a Blake Leader and an inspiration to many. Like Eugene, Fran loves XC racing, and just about any form of running you could mention. As for trail runs, amongst others, Fran has run the Old Ghost Road and the underwhelmingly named Oman Desert Marathon. In addition to this wonderful conversation we have the results of the great slew of racing that happened in the weekend, We discuss Glenn Sutton’s incredible new adventure for Hospice NZ , the 100 mile records fall, we have hope for our US trail friends, and an incredible Greatest Run Ever. Enjoy.
107 minutes | Apr 20, 2021
Episode 139 - Riverhead Backyard ReLaps Ultra Special 2021
Kia Ora Whānau.This week on the podcast Eugene and Matt pick ourselves up and dust ourselves off after the love-in/mud pit /festival that was the 2021 Riverhead Backyard Relaps Ultramarathon and Relay. This episode has the record for most people interviewed in one show, with Shaun Collins, Brooke Thomas, Adam Keen, Mike White, Andrew McDowell, and Chris Bisley. We also have additional bonus audio with Olympic marathon runner Deena Kastor discussing her transition to marathon running (courtesy of Anna Hughes and Books That Work). Also ice cream, house music, and did we mention results? Yep, we got results. Enjoy.
55 minutes | Apr 13, 2021
Episode 138 - Dawn Tuffery 2021
Kia Ora Whānau.This week on the podcast Eugene and Matt jump in for a sweet little chat with running legend Dawn Tuffery. We talk about her stellar 2021 of racing, including 3rd place at the Tarawera 100 miles, the IAU 6 hour solidarity run, and 3rd at the Coastal Ultra just last weekend. We romp through the bumper crop of results from the weekend’s racing,go through the details of our upcoming live show, knock out a scenic Greatest Run Ever, receive more evidence that the pukeko is indeed a shifty murder chicken, and Matt continues the great hot cross insurrection of ‘21 . Enjoy.
86 minutes | Apr 6, 2021
Episode 137 - Ben and Yonni Kepes
Kia Ora Whānau. This week on the podcast we have our first Father-Son double header! Eugene speaks to Ben and Yonni Kepes. Ben and Yonni are an ultra trail running father and son from Canterbury. They are both volunteer firefighters, both involved in the family business which Ben co-founded, Cactus Outdoors, and both involved with the organisation Speed Freaks. Ben has also been recognised for his leadership by the Sir Peter Blake Trust, he’s a technology expert, a business advisor and entrepreneur. Yonni celebrated his 21st by running the Northburn 50 km recently, and then crewed home his dad and others. He was the youngest person known to have run a 100 km and a 100 mile race. This is an inspiring and emotional chat about family, commitment, and love of our sport. We also have a Goggins-inspired Greatest Run Ever, we run down the ways Matt hates Hot Cross Buns (lame, gross) Matt offends Scotland (we take it week about) and Eugene preps to pace the Rotorua Marathon. Enjoy
85 minutes | Mar 30, 2021
Episode 136 - Matt Girvan
Kia Ora Whānau.This week on the podcast, Eugene and Matt have an engaging conversation with New Plymouth’s Matt Girvan. Matt lives in Edinburgh these days and managed to time the back half of his OE with spending nearly a year indoors. Frustrated by this and wanting to experience the wild spaces of Scotland, Matt put in place an FKT attempt on the Scottish National Trail - 864km and 20,000 metres of vertical gain. We talk to Matt about the challenges and joys, the literal (and figurative) ups and downs of such an attempt. We talk through the challenge of documenting the attempt in a short film. We discuss what really matters during these things and how his FKT finish at the Cape Wrath Lighthouse qualifies doubly as the most New Zealand AND most Scottish finish ever. It also appears that all of Aotearoa was racing on the weekend so we run that down (ha!), and give a shout out to those out there doing things to promote mental wellbeing. There may or may not be Dad Jokes. Why the long face? Enjoy.
90 minutes | Mar 23, 2021
Episode 135 - Jamie Hawker
Kia Ora Whānau.Jamie Hawker ran his first 100km at 18 years of age. He waited 40 years to do his second. This week, Eugene and Matt have their hearts lifted and their minds blown with this amazing conversation with Jamie Hawker. Jamie is a local legend. He’s turned to engagement in the community to supplement his running buzz. From his involvement in the Port Hills Athletic Club in Christchurch, to guiding low vision and blind runners with the Achilles Foundation and coaching the Speed Freaks running group via Odyssey House, Jamie exemplifies the line “proud of a life where to give means more than to take”. Did we mention that he is the Crater Rim Ultra race director, which is Aotearoa/New Zealand Trail Running Championships and one of the toughest 50 kms in the country? His son, Scotty, we understand is also quite good at running. We also speak with Andrew McDowall and have the question answered “what in the world can rub the polish off this man?”. *Spoiler Alert* It is a second place finish at the mighty Northburn 100 mile. Enjoy.
90 minutes | Mar 16, 2021
Episode 134 - Ali Pottinger and Kerry Suter, Ask the Coaches
Kia Ora Whanau. One of the most enjoyable things about spending such a long time on the mic with Squadrun founders Kerry Suter and Ali Pottinger at Tarawera ultramarathon was the off-mic talk about training, race craft, and physiology. They were dropping science like Galileo dropped the orange (Yauch Diamond & Horowitz 1989). We thought it would be an excellent idea to get the pair back onDirt Church Radio for a deep dive into some coaching knowledge. What follows is a wonderfully informative discussion around training plans, specificity, Why your watch sucks, strength training, are junk miles real, and what separates a “good” runner from a “great” runner. We also have a Greatest Run Ever with family honour and money on the line, Stuff you Should Know when we cover some of the amazing racing that are happening in Aotearoa and Australia and why it’s unlikely that Matt and Eugene will ever score a Six Foot Track plate. Enjoy.
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