The Gazette first reported about Ulrich last October, when he was attempting to run across the United States to break a speed record set almost 25 years ago. His journey began in San Francisco on Sept. 13 and he completed his run across America in New York City on Nov. 11 (Election Day) with an official finish time of 52 days, 11 hours, and 58 minutes. He averaged more than 58 miles per day -- that is approximately the equivalent of two marathons plus a 10K race -- every day for more than 52 days in a row.
Ulrich was accompanied by a film crew who recorded the entire event for a documentary called "Running America" set to be released in 2009. The film crew stayed in McCook and ate at The Looking Glass, where they befriended owner Mitch Farr, and the owner of Tri State Spas, Blaine Budke. Hence came the offer of a steak and spa for Ulrich. Because Ulrich typically ran 19 hours per day, he was not able to accept the offer back in October, but he did accept a motorcycle escort through B Street by Farr and Budke.
(McCook Daily Gazette)
Ulrich's crossing is the third fastest ever on the Los Angeles or San Francisco/New York City route. He smashed the Grand Masters (age 50 and over) record of 64 days. Amazingly, at age 57, Ulrich also broke the Masters (age 40 and over) record of just under 53 days. During his record-setting run, Ulrich averaged 58 miles per day, but he ran between 60 and 70 miles on 43 out of 52 days. He wore out more than 30 pairs of shoes and dozens of pairs of socks.
Ulrich is now writing a companion book to the documentary. The film crew, NEHST Studios, filmed more than 400 hours of video, including some with Farr and Budke in McCook. Ulrich was amazed and humbled by the people who helped him through his run. "Seeing how much Americans have in common was one of the greatest things about the run," Ulrich said. We are all facing challenges, but we have the strength to overcome those challenges if we support each other."
And this time through, Ulrich was able to collect on the offer of a steak at The Looking Glass.