Name: James L. Smith
City: Grand Rapids
State: MI
Country: USA

Nationality: American
Occupation: Vice President - Banking
Birthday: April 30, 1965
Age: 36
T-Shirt: XL

Number of Years Running: 20
Number of Marathons: 14


50k-I have never competed in a 50K.

50mi-1999 Dances with Dirt, 9:34, 12th Place.

100km-I have never competed in a 100K

100mi-1995 Leadville 100 (Colorado), 21:52 5th place;
1999 Kettle Moraine 100 (Wisconsin)25:40 19th place.


Previous Badwater Racing: N/A
Previous Badwater Crewing: N/A
Previous Badwater Clinic N/A

Best Ultra Run Experience:

1999 Kettle Moraine 100 because it was 95 degrees out with 97% humidity. The field was dwindling down but I dug down deep and finished the race. My 10 year old son ran the last 1/4 mile with me and that brought tears to my eyes. I had my family as support for me and it was a great experience.

Weird Experience:

1992 Doc Holiday (Colorado) 35 mile trail race because it snowed 5" on us during the race. There was so much snow that everyone kept falling over and running of the course. It was so crazy that everyone was just laughing and having a good time. Even though it wasn't one of the longest races I have ever done, it was definitely the strangest weather that I have ever ran in.


I would say it was a tie between the Leadville 100, due to altitude and the Run to The Sun in Hawaii. The course in Hawaii is 36.2 miles starting from sea level and running up hill for the entire 36 miles to an altitude of 10,032 feet. Running up hill (and racing it) with very warm temperatures at the beginning and very cold at the end was a big challenge.


I love the adventure of running ultras. The people I meet during and after these events are some of the kindest people I have ever met. I also run because I feel I have a talent that other can benefit from. I run for charities such as the Hope Network and this year will be for the Parkinsons disease.

Why badwater:

I love pushing my body to the limits. I am told that Badwater is one of if not the hardest race in the United States. I am training extremely hard for this event and am expecting to place in the top 5. The Micheal J. Fox foundation is speaking with a friend of mine (Robert Johnson who is also trying to enter this race) to kick off a national campaign that would bring awareness to Parkinsons diesease and the race.

Other Exp.:

None. I am a black belt in Taekwon Do and compete on a national level.



More Media:

As I stated before, the Michael J. Fox foundation is working with myself and an associate to have coverage of this race for Parkinsons disease. I would envision this coverage to be in the form of TV and magazine.


Yes, The Micheal J. Fox foundation.

English: yes
Crew English: yes
Hike: no
Permit: yes



2000 Nipguard Inc. Sponsored Runner
2000 Montrail Sponsored Runner
1984 Olympic Marathon Trials Qualifier
1988 Olympic Marathon Trials Qualifier
1988 Hawaii State RRCA 10K Champion
1986 NCAA Championship Cross Country Team Member (University of Oregon)
1987 – 1988 Reebok Sponsored Runner
1988 – 1992 Nike Sponsored Runner (Member of Athletes In Action)

Other Accomplishments

United States Taekwon Do Federation Certified 1st Degree Black Belt #A-1-7309
United States Taekwon Do Federation Certified 2nd Degree Black Belt #A-2-1878
International Taekwon Do Federation Certified 1st Degree Black Belt #A-1-7309
International Taekwon Do Federation Certified 2nd Degree Black Belt #A-2-1878
United States Taekwon Do Federation Certified Class C Instructor #274
United States Taekwon Do Federation Certified Class C Umpire
United States Taekwon Do Federation Certified Class B Umpire
International Taekwon Do Federation Certified Instructor #153-163

Personal Records

100 Miles - 21:52:14 Leadville 100
50 Miles 9:34:22 Dances With Dirt 50 Mile
36.2 Miles 5:32:02 Run to the Sun (0 to 10,000 Feet Elevation Gain)
26.2 Miles 2:13:12 Phidippides Marathon
13.1 Miles 1:03:05 Bohemian Mining Days Half Marathon
10K 29:52 Oregon Invitational – Track
10K 30:12 Butte to Butte 10K - Roads
5K 14:45 Dracula Dash 5K

Major Races Completed

Leadville 100
Kauai Marathon (2 times – 1st place)
Kettle Moraine 100
Pikes Peak Marathon – 2 Times (2nd, 3rd)
Dances With Dirt 50 Mile
Bolder Boulder 10K (6 Times)
Doc Holiday 35 Mile Run
Hood to Coast Relay – 5 Times (1st place 3 times)
Vail Half Marathon
Run The Rockies Series – 2 Times (1st, 2nd)
New York Marathon
Garden of The Gods 10K
Maui Marathon (3 times – 1st place)
Old Kent River Bank Run 25K
Honolulu Marathon
Crim Festival of Races 10 Mile
Trails End Marathon
Georgetown to Idaho Springs Half Marathon
Ten Mile Creek 10,000
Run to the Sun (2 Times)