THE RUT – LONE PEAK VK 2015 Race Images and Summary

©iancorless.com_Rut2015-5142Starting at the Big Sky Resort base area, the Lone Peak VK offered Skyrunners a lung busting ascent to the summit of Lone Peak (11,166ft) in just a little less than 5k.

It may not be the steepest VK on the Skyrunner® World Series but it certainly is one of the most dramatic and the views from the summit are quite incredible.

In contrast to 2014, the first half of the VK route had a change based on operational concerns of Big Sky Resort. So this year, the sole hole biking trail is a no go and the route takes on a steeper and more direct route following the ethos and principals of Skyrunning.

Heading up Huntley Hollow and Calamity Jane ski runs the route headed up to the Bone Crusher and the impressive Alto ridge. Here it gets steep, gnarly and technical and the long haul, hands-on-knees grunt continued to the summit. The final sections had a potential for rockfall, exposure and other objective hazards.

©iancorless.com_Rut2015-5140

Starting in waves, the elite runners departed first on the stroke of 1500 in a mass group. The early stages were always going to be about finding a rhythm, working out a good pace and then looking for a prime position before the more technical and challenging terrain started. Remi Bonnet and Laura Orgue pushed from the start and both looked very strong at the midway point before the more technical sections started.

©iancorless.com_Rut2015-5299

In the ladies race Morgan Arritola looked to be closing the gap with 500m covered but Laura found the extra reserves to push on to the line. Ladies rising star, Yngvild Kaspersen ran a strong race and relegated ladies Tromso VK winner, Emelie Forsberg with a strong push for 3rd.

©iancorless.com_Rut2015-5310

Remi Bonnet was in a class of his own on this course and finished clear of Matterhorn Ultraks winner, Martin Anthamatten and Ferran Teixido moved up from 4th place and 500m to 3rd at the line.

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At the summit Remi Bonnet arrived first looking spent with the effort in a time of 45:58:04. It was a dominating performance and a confirmation of a star in the making. Holding on for 2nd was Martin Anthamatten and 3rd place was Ferran Teixido in 47:38:78 and 48:04:89. respectively.

©iancorless.com_Rut2015-5214

In the ladies’ race Laura Orgue finished a strong 1st 1-minute clear of Morgan Arritola 2nd and Yngvild Kaspersen 3rd. Times were 52:20:36, 53:16:79 and 55:15:05.

The weather and altitude played a key factor in the Lone Peak VK and when a race starts on or around 2000m, a runner’s altitude adaptation was always going to play a key part.

Attention now turns to Saturday and the 25km event. This event will prove to be fast and furious with mixed terrain that includes single track, jeep roads, alpine ridge lines and the summit of the iconic Lone Peak.

Results:

  1. Laura Orgue 52:20:36
  2. Morgan Arritola 53:16:79
  3. Yngvild Kaspersen 55:15:05
  1. Remi Bonnet 45:58:04
  2. Martin Anthamatten 47:38:78
  3. Ferran Teixido 48:04:89

Episode 94 – Glen Coe Skyline and UTMB

TALK ULTRA LOGO

Episode 94 of Talk Ultra is all about the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline and UTMB. We have some post race chats with Emelie Forsberg, Florian Reichert and RD, Shane Ohly about Glen Coe and then we have a full and in-depth interview with race winner, Joe Symonds. UTMB was a race of drama and instead of speaking to the top 3, we chat with Damian Hall and Richard Ashton, two Brits who finished in the top 50. Niandi Carmont is my co-host

00:09:30 NEWS

Help Nepal – Nepal images ‘FACES of NEPAL’ – order a print and all funds donated to Nepal charities http://iancorless.org/2015/04/28/nepal-appeal-nepalearthquake/

You will notice a few changes in episode 93 of Talk Ultra. Yes, we have some new music, a new logo and over the coming weeks and months we will start to add some new interview sections.

GLEN COE SKYLINE

1 – Joe Symonds 7:36:21

2 – Mark Harris 7:44:51

3 – Jayson Cavill 7:49:42

00:13:30 INTERVIEW FLORIAN REICHERT

1 – Emelie Forsberg 7:44:12 and 2nd overall

2 – Jasmin Paris 7:54:29

3 – Sarah Ridgway 9:21:44

00:25:15 INTERVIEW EMELIE FORSBERG

00:31:56 INTERVIEW SHANE OHLY

UTMB

1 – Xavier Thevenard 21:09:15

2 – Luis Alberto Hernando 21:57:17

3 – David Laney 21:59:42

1 – Nathalie Mauclair 25:15:33

2 – Uxue Fraille 26:29:35

3 – Denise Zimmerman 27:33:51

LEADVILLE

1 – Ian Sharman 16:33:54

2 – Kyle Pietari 18:16:04

3 – Juan Carlos Sagatsume 18:29:27

1 – Liza Howard 19:34:09

2 – Kara Henry 19:54:08

3 – Danielle Hilson 22:28:00

ULTRAVASEN

1 – Jonas Buud 5:45:08

2 – Max King 6:06:11

3 – Didrik Hermansen 6:08:10

1 – Jasmin Nunige 7:02:35

2 – Ida Nilsson 7:05:56

3 – Petra Kindlund 7:34:02

00:56:31 INTERVIEW

JOE SYMONDS

01:51:05 INTERVIEW

RICHARD ASHTON

02:26:54 INTERVIEW

DAMIAN HALL

UP & COMING RACES

Australia

New South Wales

Great North Walk 100 km | 100 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Great North Walk 100 Miles | 100 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

Queensland

Glasshouse 100 km | 100 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Glasshouse 100 Mile | 100 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

Victoria

Walhalla Wound-Up – 50 km | 50 kilometers | September 13, 2015 | website

Austria

“GRAWE” 50km Lauf | 50 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

“NKE Austria” 100km Lauf | 100 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Wörthersee Trail-Maniac 114 K | 114 kilometers | September 18, 2015 | website

Wörthersee Trail Maniak 114K Superior | 114 kilometers | September 18, 2015 | website

Canada

Alberta

Lost Soul 100 Km Ultra | 100 kilometers | September 11, 2015 | website

Lost Soul 100 Mile Ultra | 100 miles | September 11, 2015 | website

Lost Soul 50 Km Ultra | 50 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

British Columbia

50K Cody Claim Run | 50 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

Finlayson Arm 50k Fat Ass | 50 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Golden Ultra | 80 kilometers | September 18, 2015 | website

Mount Robson 50km Ultra Marathon | 50 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Ontario

Haliburton Forest Trail 100 Mile Race | 100 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

Haliburton Forest Trail 50 km Race | 50 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Haliburton Forest Trail 50 Mile Race | 50 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

Sears Great Canadian Run – Toronto | 141 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Quebec

Chute du Diable 50 km | 50 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

Chute du Diable 80 km | 80 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

Croatia

Ucka Trail – 73 km | 73 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Denmark

Nordjylland

100 Miles – Around the isle of Mors | 100 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

France

Alpes-Maritimes

Ultra-Trail Côte d’Azur Mercantour | 140 kilometers | September 04, 2015 | website

Bas-Rhin

Grand Trail du HK ” The Magic Trail” | 52 kilometers | September 06, 2015 | website

Bouches-du-Rhône

Grand Raid de Camargue | 100 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Isère

Ultra Trail du Vercors | 88 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

Lot

Figeac – Conques | 208 kilometers | September 17, 2015 | website

Trail Vallée Cere et Dordogne – 53 km | 53 kilometers | September 06, 2015 | website

Pas-de-Calais

Trail de la côte d’Opale – 62 km | 62 kilometers | September 13, 2015 | website

Rhône

La Nuit des Carbones – 50 km | 50 kilometers | September 04, 2015 | website

Vendée

Bol d’Air – 50 km | 50 kilometers | September 13, 2015 | website

Vosges

L’infernal Trail des Vosges – 160 km | 158 kilometers | September 13, 2015 | website

L’infernal Trail des Vosges – 72 km | 72 kilometers | September 13, 2015 | website

Germany

North Rhine-Westphalia

P-Weg Ultramarathon | 73 kilometers | September 06, 2015 | website

Rhineland-Palatinate

Dorint-RUN50 | 50 kilometers | September 18, 2015 | website

Greece

Athens-Sparta | 245 kilometers | September 04, 2015 | website

Iceland

Run Iceland Adventure Trail | 110 kilometers | September 06, 2015 | website

India

Jammu and Kashmir

Khardung La Challenge | 72 kilometers | September 13, 2015 | website

Tamil Nadu

Chennai Trail Ultra Marathon | 50 kilometers | September 13, 2015 | website

Ireland

Munster

Dingle Ultra Marathon | 50 miles | September 05, 2015 | website

Kerry Way Ultra | 120 miles | September 04, 2015 | website

Italy

Aosta Valley

Tor des Géants | 330 kilometers | September 13, 2015 | website

Liguria

Avatrail – 54 km | 54 kilometers | September 06, 2015 | website

Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol

Sellaronda Trail Running | 56 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Veneto

Troi dei Cimbri | 53 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Japan

100 km | 100 kilometers | September 13, 2015 | website

50 km | 50 kilometers | September 13, 2015 | website

Netherlands

Gelderland

53 km | 53 kilometers | September 06, 2015 | website

New Zealand

Marton-Wanganui Ultramarathon | 66 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Norway

Telemark’s Toughest | 81 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

Poland

7 Valleys Run Ultramarathon of the Festival | 100 kilometers | September 13, 2015 | website

Bieg 7 Dolin – Ultramaraton – 100 km | 100 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Bieg 7 Dolin – Ultramaraton – 66 km | 66 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Portugal

180 km | 180 kilometers | September 04, 2015 | website

Romania

Ciucas X3 Ultramaraton | 105 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Dracula 106K | 106 kilometers | September 04, 2015 | website

Dracula 106K 2-Day Stage Race | 106 kilometers | September 04, 2015 | website

Vlad Tepes 52K | 52 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

Singapore

Craze Ultra 100 miles | 100 miles | September 05, 2015 | website

Craze Ultra 101 km | 101 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

Craze Ultra 78 km | 78 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

Slovenia

Marathon Celje-Logarska dolina – 75 km | 75 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

South Africa

Bonitas Sunday Mont-Aux-Sources Challenge | 50 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

Hout is Goud Day-Breaker | 80 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Spain

Catalonia

Ultra Trail dels Comtes d’Erill | 82 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

Principality of Asturias

Ultra Trail Macizo de Ubiña “Los Güeyos del Diablo” | 64 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Switzerland

Valais

Trail des Dents-du-Midi – Trail découverte | 57 kilometers | September 18, 2015 | website

Vaud

Ultratour du Leman | 173 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

United Kingdom

Anglesey

Ring o’ Fire | 131 miles | September 04, 2015 | website

Argyll and Bute

Tiree Ultramarathon | 35 miles | September 06, 2015 | website

Buckinghamshire

Infinity Run – 100 miles in 24hrs | 100 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

Cumbria

Lakes Sky Ultra | 50 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Gloucestershire

Cotswold Way Challenge Multistage Ultra | 57 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

Northern Ireland

Titanic Quarter 101k | 101 kilometers | September 06, 2015 | website

Titanic Quarter 50k | 50 kilometers | September 06, 2015 | website

Oxfordshire

Thames Path Challenge 100km | 100 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Thames Path Challenge 50km | 50 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Powys

10 Peaks Brecon Beacons – Long Course | 89 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

10 Peaks Brecon Beacons – Short Course | 58 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

Shropshire

Double or Nothing | 70 miles | September 18, 2015 | website

Stockport

Bullock Smithy | 56 miles | September 05, 2015 | website

Suffolk

Ultra Tour of Suffolk | 50 miles | September 05, 2015 | website

USA

Alaska

Klondike Trail of ’98 International Road Relay | 175 kilometers | September 11, 2015 | website

Arizona

Paatuwaqatsi Run 50K | 50 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

California

Headlands 100mi | 100 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

Headlands 50mi | 50 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

Headlands 75mi | 75 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

Los Pinos 50K | 50 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

Lost Sierra 50K | 50 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Robinson Flat 50k | 50 kilometers | September 13, 2015 | website

Tahoe 200 | 200 miles | September 11, 2015 | website

Colorado

Devil on the Divide 50K Trail Run | 50 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Flaming Foilage Relay | 160 miles | September 11, 2015 | website

Hideaway Hundred 100 Miler | 101 miles | September 05, 2015 | website

Hideaway Hundred 50K | 33 miles | September 06, 2015 | website

Hideaway Hundred 50 Miler | 50 miles | September 05, 2015 | website

Run Rabbit Run 100 Mile Ultra Marathon | 100 miles | September 18, 2015 | website

Solemates Silverton 100 Miler | 100 miles | September 05, 2015 | website

Tommyknocker 100K | 100 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Tommyknocker 50K | 50 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Florida

The Pinellas Trail Challenge | 46 miles | September 05, 2015 | website

Wildcat 100 km | 100 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

Wildcat 100 Miler | 100 miles | September 05, 2015 | website

Idaho

Moscow Mountain Madness | 50 kilometers | September 06, 2015 | website

Illinois

50K | 50 kilometers | September 13, 2015 | website

Double-Ender 25k | 50 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Evergreen Lake Ultra and a Half | 51 miles | September 13, 2015 | website

Evergreen Lake Ultras | 34 miles | September 13, 2015 | website

The Hennepin Hundred – 100M | 100 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

The Hennepin Hundred – 100M Relay | 100 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

The Hennepin Hundred – 50M | 50 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

Kansas

Hawk 100 | 100 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

Hawk 50 | 50 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

Massachusetts

TARC Fall Classic 50K | 50 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

TARC Fall Classic 50 M | 50 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

The Rock Run | 50 miles | September 05, 2015 | website

Michigan

Freak 50K | 50 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Hallucination 100 Mile | 100 miles | September 11, 2015 | website

LSD 100K | 100 kilometers | September 11, 2015 | website

Peace, Love & 50 mile | 50 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

Minnesota

Superior Sawtooth 100 Mile | 100 miles | September 11, 2015 | website

Superior Trail 50 Mile | 50 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

Missouri

Go! KT82 Trail Relay | 82 miles | September 05, 2015 | website

Montana

The Rut 50K | 50 kilometers | September 06, 2015 | website

Nebraska

Bohemian Alps 50 Kilometer Ultramarathon | 50 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

New York

Shawangunk Ridge 74-Mile Trail Run/Hike | 74 miles | September 18, 2015 | website

North Carolina

Weymouth Woods 50K | 50 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Oklahoma

3 Half Marathons in 3 Days | 39 miles | September 05, 2015 | website

3 Marathons in 3 Days | 78 miles | September 05, 2015 | website

Do-Wacka-Do 50k Trail Run | 50 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

DoWackaDo 50 Mile Trail Run | 50 miles | September 05, 2015 | website

DoWackaDo Trail 50K Run | 50 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

Oregon

McKenzie River Trail Run | 50 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Pennsylvania

Groundhog Fall 50K | 50 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Pine Creek Challenge 100K | 100 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

Pine Creek Challenge 100M | 100 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

Tennessee

Stanky Creek 50K | 50 kilometers | September 13, 2015 | website

Texas

50K | 50 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

Utah

Red Rock Relay Zion Edition | 187 miles | September 11, 2015 | website

Wasatch Front 100 Mile Endurance Run | 100 miles | September 11, 2015 | website

Vermont

Jay Peak 50K Ultra | 50 kilometers | September 06, 2015 | website

Virginia

Iron Mountain 50 mile Trail Run | 50 miles | September 05, 2015 | website

Odyssey 40 Mile Trail Ultra | 40 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

The Blude Ridge Relay | 208 miles | September 11, 2015 | website

The Ring – Massanutten Trail Circuit Run | 71 miles | September 05, 2015 | website

Washington

Day Two- (September 7) 50k | 50 kilometers | September 06, 2015 | website

First Call Veterans Day 50K (September) | 50 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

PCT Bunker to Bonneville 50K  | 50 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

Plain 100 Mile Endurance Run | 100 miles | September 12, 2015 | website

Volcanic 50 Mt St. Helens | 50 kilometers | September 05, 2015 | website

Wisconsin

Lake Michigan Trail 50K | 50 kilometers | September 06, 2015 | website

Wyoming

Sundance 50K Trail Run | 50 kilometers | September 12, 2015 | website

03:00:00 CLOSE 

 

 03:05:43

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Website – talkultra.com

Matterhorn Ultraks 2015 Race Summary

_JKA4109

The 3rd edition of the Skyrunning Matterhorn Ultraks Trail took place at the weekend in Zermatt. Once again, the sun and the stars of the Trail kept on shining all day long. The Swiss Martin Anthamatten imposed himself on the men’s main distance, part of the Skyrunner® World Series, while the Italian Elisa Desco won the female’s race. Nearly 1’800 participants took the start of the “16K”, “30K”, “46K” and “VZR”.

This year, the Spanish armada of the Trail couldn’t cope with the local runner and ambassador of the Matterhorn Ultraks, Martin Anthamatten. “To win such an important race here in Zermatt is a real dream. It’s for sure the greatest victory of my career”, commented the Valais winner after his race. He ran ahead the Spanish Manuel Merillas (4:54’32’’) and Aritz Egea (4:56’13’’). Just shortly ahead until he reached the Schwarzsee, Anthamatten finally managed to clearly step ahead over the last 20kms.

On the women’s side, the winner’s podium remained unchanged with the exception of the Italian Elisa Desco, who took her revenge on Stevie Kremer (USA). Second last year after the American, she managed the perfect race this year, imposing herself in 5h23’46’’ and only 59 seconds ahead of her rival, but still not breaking her record. The third place goes once again to the Spanish Maite Maiora (5:31’30’’). To note that the American Megan Kimmel dominated the race until the last quarter, she had to abandon a few kilometers from Zermatt.

_JKA4162In total, 1797 adults and 101 children of 58 nationalities and coming from 46 different countries took part in the third edition of the Matterhorn Ultraks Trail. When crossing the finish line, they all looked radiant after their experience within/through an outstanding mountain environment. It was unique! The barrier in Riffelalp with the sound of the alphorns echoing in front of the Matterhorn – This was one of the most beautiful moments in my life. I truly had tears in my eyes”, commented Antoine, participant of the “16K”. At the same time, the atmosphere was festive all through the day at the “Espace Ultraks”, where hundreds of spectators had come to support their favorite participant. Thanks to the video screen, they were able to follow the most significant moments from the heart of the village of Zermatt.

​« 46K » MEN
1. MARTIN ANTHAMATTEN (SUI) 4:45’11”532
2. MERILLAS MOLEDO MANU (ESP) 4:54’32”702
3. ARITZ EGEA (ESP) 4:56’13”303

​« 46K » WOMEN
1. DESCO ELISA (ITA) 5:23’46”293
2. KREMER STEVIE (USA) 5:24’45”578
3. MAITE MAIROA (ESP) 5:31’30”936

The inscriptions for 2016 will open during the month of September. Stay tuned: www.matterhorn.ultraks.com

Images by ® Juerg Kaufmann

Press Release by Matterhorn Ultraks race office

Salomon Glen Coe Skyline 2015 – Race Images and Summary

©iancorless.com_GlenCoe2015-3447

Today, the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline well and truly cemented itself as one of the ‘must-do’ events not only in the UK but the world. At times, it has been a rocky road putting this event on. Not from an organisation point of view I must add but from negative publicity about inappropriate use of the mountains and of course the D A N G E R and the ‘risk-of-death’ that may occur.

Many Scottish papers said that the trails would be strewn with runners going fast and ruining the day of many a mountain lover….

As predicted, the reality was far from the scare mongering of a select few.

Mountain lovers were on the mountains and you know what? They stopped, cheered, applauded and encouraged what (in their words) these ‘super humans’ were doing.

Skyrunning World and European Champion for the ultra distance, Emelie Forsberg won the ladies race and placed 2nd overall. Her performance was quite literally ‘off-the-scale.’ She relegated several of the UK’s top mountain runners to lower positions and post race she said:

Waow! Seriously the best race in this distance. Super technical ridges and gullies (think Trofeo Kima but no via ferrata!) some parts very runnable on nice but still tricky trails. Glen Coe I’m thrilled to have run this race. Thanks to your amazing organization. Even though it was hard all of the nature and the course made me go fast. Thanks all of you standing along the course, you made me feel so welcomed here!

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It was a sentiment echoed by the recent Lakeland 50 runner, Jayson Cavill who placed 3rd man and 4th overall:

“Oh my gosh I can’t believe it!! What an amazing race, I am too far gone to put into words just how totally nails that route was, technical descents that went on forever, long steeeeeep climbs that went on for even longer. Great climbing around the ridges and rock faces, I am so so chuffed I really feel like I got the best out of myself today – even if my legs were shot after the first 10 miles – it did hurt a lot! Such a great experience.”

Scotland played ball today too. The previous day’s rain eased over night and the runners were greeted with a perfect day until just after midday. As predicted the cloud came in and with it showers. But at this stage the runners just had one thing in mind; the finish.

©iancorless.com_GlenCoe2015-2245

In the early stages of the race, it was all going to script with Joe Symonds, Es Tressider and a handful of other top male talent dictating  the pace and Emelie Forsberg was holding a slender lead over the 2015 Berghaus Dragons Back winner, Jasmin Paris.

©iancorless.com_GlenCoe2015-3589

Climbing Curved Ridge was for many, the highlight of the race. Coming just 6-miles in, it was a real brutal way to kick off what would be the UK’s most extreme day in the mountains. For those who don’t know, The Curved Ridge route ascended Stob Dearg (Buachaille Etive Mor) via the exposed Grade III scramble (a ‘Moderate’ graded rock climb).

What followed was a master class of pure Skyrunning by Joe and Emelie. They pushed the pace, extended the gap between the competition and when they entered the Aonach Eagach Ridge barring an accident, the race for the respective top slots was over. However, Joe was only 10-minutes ahead of Emelie… could she close the gap?

Yes!

But only by a couple of minutes. Joe crossed the line in 7:36:21 and Emelie 7:44:19.

“My overall reflections on this race are that the route was absolutely phenomenal. I can’t think of anywhere else on mainland UK that could offer such quality of extreme mountain running. It is no overstatement to say that this really was a first for us in Britain. Elsewhere Emilie has already given her thoughts on how it compares to other races of this distance across the globe. To organise this event was of course brave, given the objective danger involved. But bravery often pays off, and you can mitigate against the dangers, as the organisers did, by taking appropriate safety precautions and vetting participants carefully.” – Joe Symonds

©iancorless.com_GlenCoe2015-3311

Mark Harris and Jayson Cavill finished 2nd and 3rd men after pre-race favourite Es Tressider tired over the final miles.

Jasmin Paris once again produced another top notch result placing 2nd behind Emelie and 5th overall in 7:54:29, just 10-minutes back from the Skyrunning World Champion. Sarah Ridgway rounded out the ladies’ podium in 9:21:44.

©iancorless.com_GlenCoe2015-3279

148 runner started the 1st edition of the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline and currently (at the time of writing) 24 have withdrawn from the race. This low drop out rate is a testament to the strict vetting procedure that was put in place by race director, Shane Ohly.

The buzz post race is one of adrenaline, stories and how the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline is the hardest race they have ever done.

The stage is now set. This race is set to become a beacon of Skyrunning, not only in the UK but worldwide.

Expect great things for 2016!

“What a great closer of a long, successful and satisfying season: #glencoeskyline had everything (and more) of a skyrace I expected! It was by far the most technical, most demanding, most dramatic and most scenic race I ever did! It’s amazing what the organizers around Shane Ohly put together here in Scotland. I feel deeply priviledged that I could’ve been part of the inaugural race of what will become an epic on the skyrunning calendar! Thanks for having me here and thanks for your support! I went into the race with a minor injury, but up to the highest point I felt really good. Then I took a tumble on a technical downhill and lost a bit of confidence going down, finishing in 17th place in 8:45 h. After all I’m just so happy and satisfied with a great day out in the mountains and an amazing visit to Scotland! – Florian Reichert

Full results are available HERE

The Salomon Glen Coe Website HERE

Skyrunning UK HERE

RESULTS

Joe Symonds 7:36:21

Mark Harris 7:44:51

Jayson Cavill 7:49:42

 

Emelie Forsberg 7:44:19 (2nd overall)

Jasmin Paris 7:54:29

Sarah Ridgway 9:21:44

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ALL IMAGES ©iancorless.com – all rights reserved

Matterhorn Ultraks 2015 Preview

©iancorless.com_IMG_7100Ultraks2014_

The 3rd edition Matterhorn Ultraks 46K kicks off on Saturday, August 22. As the name suggests, the magic Matterhorn mountain provides a stunning backdrop to this iconic race.

Stevie Kremer, 2014 world champion for the combined title and race winner of 2014, return to Zermatt and will look to defend her title. Recent success in America and 4th place at Sierre-Zinal shows the pocket rocket is in form!

Italian Elisa Desco, placed 3rd at Sierrie-Zinal just 2 weeks ago and has had a mixed 2015 so far. Placing 2nd here last year she will without doubt look to take the top slot.

Megan Kimmel is on fire on 2015 and is my hot tip for victory in Zermatt. A stunning victory at the Dolomites Skyrace and 2nd at Sierre-Zinal shows that the American not only has climbing and descending legs but also plenty of speed.

Maite Maiora, currently ranked third on the Skyrunner® World Series always is a strong and consistent performer, Azara Garcia de Los Salmones has struggled with injury and currently it is questionable if she will run. Paola Cabrerizo, placed 2nd at Zegama-Aizkorri and may well contend the podium, Anna Comet Pascua has been a revelation in 2015 and Eva Maria Moreda.

Stephanie Jimenez and Czech Anna Strakova along with Holland’s Ragna Debats are top 5 contenders.

Italy’s Tadei Pivk currently leads the SWS ranking with two straight wins in Zegama and Dolomites, without doubt he is a strong contender for the win.

Spain’s Manuel Merillas and Romanian Ionut Zinca however would love to beat Tadei in the pursuit for the top of the podium. Ranked 2nd and 3rd respectively in the SWS. Britain’s Tom Owens may well stir up the apple cart and has all the ability to win this race.

Aritz Egea was 3rd last year and is always a contender for the top-5. Sintu Vives and Jessed Hernandez are among other strong Spaniards and Moroccan Hassan Ait Chaou and Norwegian Eirik Haugsnes will place in the top-10 if all goes well/

Tromsø SkyRace® winner, Jonathan Albon may well be the surprise podium contender. He is an obstacle racing world champion who surprised everyone in Norway.  

The records to beat? Kilian Jornet’s 2013 time of 4h43’05” and Stevie Kremer’s 2014 record of 5h18’43”.

The 46 km course takes on a tough 3,600m of ascent and descent. The famous Gornergrat observation station marks the highest point of the race at 3,100m altitude, overlooking the Grenz Glacier and Monte Rosa, Europe’s second highest summit.  The entire course is overshadowed by the iconic Matterhorn peak. 

Nearly 700 runners from 34 countries will be toeing the line in Zermatt Saturday.

Some 2,000 participants from 44 countries will participate overall in the weekend’s four events – a 30% increase on last year’s figures.

 

Join us on Facebook and twitter for news and updates.

Current Sky ranking

Race website

HEAD IN THE CLOUDS, FEET ON THE GROUND

TromsoSkyRace

Read my first hand account of the incredible Tromso SkyRace on RUNULTRA

I clamber, drop, grip and ascend and descend as required by the ridge. The rocks were wet and grip via hand or foot was going to be compromised. I was already wearing light gloves to protect from the cold, my shoes were mountain running shoes designed for grip of softer/ muddier ground. I wondered, ‘What will the grip be like on these rocks?’

Read the FULL ARTICLE HERE

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To provide a perspective, take a look at Jordi’s video via GoPro from the ridge

Salomon Glen Coe Skyline 2015 – Race Preview

©iancorless.com_GlenCoeMay2015-5261

The Salomon Glen Coe Skyline is just one week away. One of six races in the 2015 Skyrunning™ UK calendar, the ‘SGCS’ is arguably one of the most anticipated races in the UK in recent years. It was thought by many that the UK could not produce a race that would hark back to the roots of Skyrunning as seen at Trofeo Kima, the Dolomites SkyRace or Ice Trail Tarentaise. They were wrong! The UK may lack the altitude of the Alps or the Dolomites but we have mountains, routes and scrambles that will test the most experienced competitor.

Shane Ohly and Gary Tompsett, curse recce May 2015

Shane Ohly and Gary Tompsett, course recce May 2015

Shane Ohly from Ourea Events and course planner Gary Tompsett have come up with a beast of a course, a course that epitomizes the ethos of Skyrunning and in doing so, the race has turned the heads of not only the running world but also the media. 

‘We are not creating another mass participation fell or trail running event, but rather a world class Skyrunning course for experienced and competent participants,’ said Shane Ohly in a recent interview with the the BBC. ‘The Glen Coe Skyline is a fusion of mountain running and alpinism where competitors need to be skilled at both disciplines to negotiate the course.’

Never a true word has been spoken and to that end, the SGCS arguably has one of the most experienced fields assembled in any race that has taken place in the UK. A race that has required participants to ‘prove’ competence to take part has made interesting reading for the race directors and Skyrunning UK.

Looking through the 170+ runners who will toe the line on Saturday August 22nd has confirmed the depth and talent of each and every Skyrunner. A familiar thread is noted, buzz words such as Bob Graham Round, Cullin Ridge, experienced climber, Skyrunning, Dolomites and Trofeo Kima appear regularly in the entry list. It makes highlighting some of the key runners for the race difficult.

©iancorless.com_EmelieForsberg

However, one name clearly stands out, Emelie Forsberg. Emelie is the current Skyrunning World and European Champion for the Ultra distance. In less than 3-years, Emelie has risen through the Skyrunning ranks to be the female face of the sport and her presence at the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline is more than a confirmation that this race is well and truly the ‘Dogs Bolx’ as one keen entrant stated!

‘I love the mountains and I love technical courses. This Salomon Glen Coe Skyline route looks amazing and a challenge. Ridge running and scrambling; I can’t wait!’ said Emelie after finishing 4th at the Dolomites SkyRace.

Jasmin Paris, fresh from victory at the Dragons Back Race will without doubt provide Emelie with a race. Jasmin’s experience of British fells and mountains may well provide a distinct advantage of the Skyrunning world champion?

Jasmin Paris - The Berghaus Dragons Back Race

Jasmin Paris – The Berghaus Dragons Back Race

Sharon Bird is an Irish International athlete, Gabriel Lees is a British Ski Mountaineering Champion and Victoria Moseley has excelled at Scaffell Pike and the 3 Peaks Race. But the female talent does not stop here, recent V3K winner and experienced Sky and mountain runner, Sarah Ridgway will be in the mix and we also need to keep a close eye on Liz Barker, Gillian Caldwell and Sarah Ryan. The ladies race is brimming with talent and the podium is wide open.

‘The mountains provide a wonderful natural playground and non more so than those in and around Glen Coe, the 2015 edition of the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline is going to be a spectacle like no other race that has taken place within the UK. We are fully aware that this race is not for everyone,’ said Ian Corless, Director for Skyrunning UK. ‘However, just like the top European races we want to invite people to come and join us for the weekend. We want a party, a celebration of running and in the process Ourea Events has in place opportunities to go into the mountains with guides and experience the race as spectators but in a safe way. This is going to be very special!’

Es Tressider in Glen Coe

Es Tressider in Glen Coe

Esmond Tressider may well be the odds on favourite for the men’s race as he is a previous record holder for the Cullin Ridge and has had very recent experience of racing in Europe on the Skyrunner® World Series. The last minute withdrawal of Finlay Wild increases Es’s chances but Joe Symonds will without doubt have other thoughts. Joe like Es, understands the UK mountains and fells and has extensive experience of racing in Europe.

Jim Mann - The Berghaus Dragons Back Race

Jim Mann – The Berghaus Dragons Back Race

Jim Mann won the 2015 Berghaus Dragons Back Race with a world-class dominating performance makes him a podium favourite and potential race winner.

Florian Reichert - Tromso SkyRace

Florian Reichert – Tromso SkyRace

Florian Reichert has been racing on the Skyrunner® World Series for several years and has had great success at VK and SKY races. He recently ran the Tromso SkyRace so the ridges and scrambling at Glen Coe will play into his hands. He is however a runner a runner that loves to go fast. Expect Florian to make places in the latter stages of the race.

Konrad Rawlik recently raced at the Dragons Back race and still produced a great performance despite injury. If fully recovered, we can expect Konrad to dictate the early pace and a podium place is a distinct possibility.

Scott Forbes, Anthony Alasdair, Andrew Barrington and Edward Hamer all may prove to be dark horses on a course that will test each and every participant to the limits. The race may only be ‘just’ over a marathon in distance but the accumulated ascent of over 4000m, technical ridges and scrambling make the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline THE race of 2015 and one that looks set to create a stir for years to come.

A celebration of running, a celebration of climbing; the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline will bring to distinct sports together in a pure celebration of Skyrunning that offers a tribute and homage to the pioneering days of Marino Giacometti, Bruno Brunod and Fabio Meraldi. To that end, on Friday night before the race, 2 films will be shown: ‘THE SKY’S THE LIMIT’ that provides an insight in to Skyrunning and the yet to be released (Oct 20th), Salomon SRTV episode, ‘FAST and LIGHT.

The future of Skyrunning in the UK is very exciting and Shane Ohly sums it up when he says:

‘I sincerely hope that aspirational races like the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline will contribute to the growth of the sport both in terms of participation and general awareness within the wider running and outdoor community within the UK and worldwide, this is my goal for the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline and we will be working hard to achieve this.’

 Put the dates in your diary:  Friday August 21st to Sunday 23rd 2015

Race Day is August 22nd

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Follow live via Trackers on the race website HERE

Photography and reports on iancorless.com

Twitter @talkultra on Instagram @iancorlessphotography Facebook HERE

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Episode 92 – Albon and Frost

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Episode 92 of Talk Ultra – We speak with Tromso SkyRace winner, Jonathan Albon and we have an inspiring chat with ladies Hardrock 100 winner, Anna Frost. The news and Speedgoat is back after a really busy month racing and working.

00:27:57 NEWS

Help Nepal – Nepal images ‘FACES of NEPAL’ – order a print and all funds donated to Nepal charities http://iancorless.org/2015/04/28/nepal-appeal-nepalearthquake/ 

SPEEDGOAT 50K

  1. Sage Canaday 5:13
  2. Alex Nichols 5:41
  3. Dan Kraft 5:57
  1. Hillary Allen 6:37
  2. Emily Richards 6:52
  3. Abby Rideout 7:00

TROMSO SKYRACE Race Report HERE and Race Images HERE

1 – Jonathan Albon 6:08:41

2 – Luis Alberto Hernando 6:25:54

3 – Rolf Einar Jensen 6:28:51

1 – Emelie Forsberg 7:09:54

2 – Mira Rai 7:23:09

3 – Malena Haukey 7:31:29

00:48:49 INTERVIEW

JONATHAN ALBON – Race report by Jonathan HERE

How scary…?

BADWATER

Pete Kostelnick 23:27:10

Oswaldo Lopez 25:38:32

Mick Thwaites 26:23:10

Nikki Wynd 27:23:27

Pam Reed 31:24:34

Jill Anderson 34:04:14

LAKELAND 100

Paul Tierney 20:42:07

Marco Consani 21:45:50

Jason Lewis 23:01:39

Carol Morgan 25:47:32

Katie Boden 28:36:19

Isobel Wykes 29:23:52

50 RESULTS

Jayson Cavill 8:04:24

Matty Brennan 8:28:24

Paul Grundy 8:28:54

Sally Fawcett 8:43:43 – 4th overall

Debbie Martin-Consani 9:04:30

Mel Varvel 9:21:57

SELF TRANSCENDENCE 3100

Aalto Ashprihana ran 3100 miles in 41 days!

01:25:04 INTERVIEW

ANNA FROST

UP & COMING RACES

Australia

Northern Territory

Alice Springs 60K Ultramarathon | 60 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

Queensland

Lamington Eco Challenge Two Marathons on Two Consecutive Days | 84 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

River Run 100 | 100 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

River Run 50 km | 50 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

Belgium

Flanders

100 km Dodentocht® | 100 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website

Wallonia

Trail des Fantômes – 100 km | 100 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

Trail des Fantômes – 50 km | 50 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

Canada

Alberta

Iron Legs 50 Miler | 50 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

British Columbia

Fat Dog 100 Trail Race: 120 mile | 120 miles | August 14, 2015 | website

Fat Dog 100 Trail Race: 50 mile | 50 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

Fat Dog 100 Trail Race: 70 mile | 70 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

Ontario

Creemore Vertical Challenge 50K | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Iroquoia Trail Test – 50K | 50 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Quebec

Trans Vallée | 67 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website

Chile

52K Aculeo | 52 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Colombia

Ultra Trail Parque Los Nevados – 59 km | 59 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Ultra Trail Parque Los Nevados – 93 km | 93 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Denmark

Sjælland

NDURE Trail 100 km | 100 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

NDURE Trail 50 km | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

France

Hautes-Pyrénées

Grand Raid des Pyrénées – l’Ultra | 160 kilometers | August 21, 2015 | website

Grand Raid des Pyrénées – Tour des Cirques | 117 kilometers | August 21, 2015 | website

Isère

Ultra Tour des 4 Massifs | 160 kilometers | August 21, 2015 | website

Loiret

L’Orleans-Océan | 410 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Vienne

Trail des Castors – 80 km | 80 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Germany

Berlin

100MeilenBerlin | 100 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

North Rhine-Westphalia

Monschau Ultra-Marathon | 56 kilometers | August 09, 2015 | website

India

Jammu and Kashmir

La Ultra – The High | 222 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

La Ultra – The High 111 | 111 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

Indonesia

Mount Rinjani Ultra | 52 kilometers | August 07, 2015 | website

Ireland

Connacht

Connemara 100 | 100 miles | August 08, 2015 | website

Ulster

Quadrathon | 169 kilometers | August 13, 2015 | website

Kenya

Amazing Maasai Ultra | 75 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Netherlands

North Holland

Dutch Coast Ultra by Night (Summer Edition) | 75 kilometers | August 21, 2015 | website

Dutch Coast Ultra by Night (Summer Edition) – 50 km | 50 kilometers | August 21, 2015 | website

Poland

Bieg Grania Tatr | 71 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Romania

VLC Ultra TrailRun Petrimanu 56 | 56 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Spain

Aragon

Calcenada Vuelta al Moncayo – 104 km | 104 kilometers | August 07, 2015 | website

Canary Islands

Haría Extreme Ultra | 80 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Sweden

Björkliden Arctic Mountain Marathon 50 km | 50 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website

Björkliden Arctic Mountain Marathon 70 km | 70 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website

Stockholm Ultramarathon 100 km | 100 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Stockholm Ultramarathon 50 km | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Sweden Sky Race 24 – 117 km | 117 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Sweden Sky Race 24 – 57 km | 57 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Tierra Arctic Ultra | 120 kilometers | August 07, 2015 | website

Trans Scania | 246 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website

Switzerland

Grisons

Swiss Irontrail T141 | 147 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website

Swiss Irontrail T201 | 202 kilometers | August 13, 2015 | website

Swiss Irontrail T81 | 89 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website

Trail Marathon 70 KM | 70 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Ticino

Ultra Race – 130 km | 128 kilometers | August 07, 2015 | website

Ultra Race – 50 km | 51 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Ultra Race – 80 km | 81 kilometers | August 07, 2015 | website

Vaud

Ultra Trail du Barlatay | 87 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Zurich

Raidlight Sardona Ultra Trail | 82 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

United Kingdom

Cornwall

Inov-8 Roseland August Trail – 32 Mile | 32 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

Inov-8 Roseland August Trail – The Plague | 64 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

Gloucestershire

Oxford Ultra | 65 miles | August 14, 2015 | website

Thames Challenge | 184 miles | August 13, 2015 | website

Windsor Ultra | 43 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

Sheffield

Ultra Tour of the Peak District | 60 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

South Lanarkshire

John Lucas Memorial Run | 50 miles | August 16, 2015 | website

Suffolk

Stour Valley Path 100km Ultra Run | 100 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Surrey

North Downs Way 100 | 100 miles | August 08, 2015 | website

Wiltshire

Salisbury 54321 50K Ultra Marathon | 50 kilometers | August 09, 2015 | website

USA

Alaska

Nifty Fifty 50K | 50 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Resurrection Pass 100 Mile Ultra Trail | 100 miles | August 07, 2015 | website

Resurrection Pass 50 Mile Ultra Trail | 50 miles | August 08, 2015 | website

California

100K | 100 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

100M | 100 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

50K | 50 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

50M | 50 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

Cinderella Trail Run 50 km (Aug) | 50 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Cool Moon 100M | 100 miles | August 08, 2015 | website

Cool Moon 50M | 50 miles | August 08, 2015 | website

Crystal Springs 50 Km Trail Run (summer) | 50 kilometers | August 09, 2015 | website

Ragnar Trail Tahoe | 136 miles | August 14, 2015 | website

Run on the Sly 50K Trail Run | 50 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

Skyline 50K | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Colorado

Beetle Kill 100k Endurance Run | 100 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website

Beetle Kill 200k Endurance Run | 200 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website

Beetle Kill 50k Endurance Run | 50 kilometers | August 14, 2015 | website

GORE-TEX TransRockies Run – Run3 | 59 miles | August 11, 2015 | website

GORE-TEX TransRockies Run – TRR6 | 120 miles | August 11, 2015 | website

Ragnar Relay Colorado | 200 miles | August 07, 2015 | website

Silverheels 100 Mile Endurance Run | 102 miles | August 08, 2015 | website

Silverton 1000 – 100 Miler | 100 miles | August 18, 2015 | website

Telluride Mountain Run | 38 miles | August 08, 2015 | website

Idaho

Standhope 60K | 60 kilometers | August 18, 2015 | website

Standhope Ultra Challenge | 83 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

Massachusetts

TARC Summer Classic 50K | 50 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

TARC Summer Classic 50M | 50 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

Michigan

Marquette Trail 50 Kilometer | 50 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Marquette Trail 50 Mile | 50 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

Minnesota

Ragnar Relay Great River | 200 miles | August 14, 2015 | website

Montana

Ghosts of Yellowstone | 100 miles | August 21, 2015 | website

Ghosts of Yellowstone 100M | 100 miles | August 21, 2015 | website

Nevada

Marlette 50K Trail Run | 50 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

New Hampshire

100 Miler | 100 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

50 Miler | 50 miles | August 16, 2015 | website

MadAthlete Emerald Necklace 3-Day Stage Race | 80 kilometers | August 21, 2015 | website

MadAthlete Emerald Necklace 3-Day Stage Race 2-Person Relay | 80 miles | August 21, 2015 | website

New Jersey

100k | 100 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

50k | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

50M | 50 miles | August 08, 2015 | website

New York

Beast of Burden Summer 100 Miler | 100 miles | August 08, 2015 | website

Beast of Burden Summer 50 Miler | 50 miles | August 08, 2015 | website

Catskill Mountain 100K Road Race | 100 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

Catskill Mountain 100K Road Relay | 100 kilometers | August 16, 2015 | website

Team Relay Race | 234 miles | August 14, 2015 | website

The Mighty Mosquito 99 Mile Trail Relay | 99 miles | August 08, 2015 | website

North Carolina

Death Before DNF Ultra 100 Miler | 100 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

Drop to 50 Miler | 50 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

North Dakota

Badlands 50K | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Badlands 50 miler | 50 miles | August 08, 2015 | website

Oregon

Elkhorn Relay | 203 miles | August 07, 2015 | website

Post Canyon 50k | 50 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Pennsylvania

Eastern States 100 | 100 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

Texas

Colorado Bend – 60k | 60 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Utah

Skyline Mountain 50K | 50 kilometers | August 15, 2015 | website

Vermont

100on100 Heart of Vermont Relay | 100 miles | August 15, 2015 | website

Virginia

Martha Moats Baker Memorial 50Km | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Washington

200 Mile S2S | 200 miles | August 14, 2015 | website

Angels Staircase 50K | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Angels Staircase 60K | 60 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Bigfoot 200 Mile Endurance Run | 205 miles | August 07, 2015 | website

West Virginia

Kanawha Trace 50K | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Wyoming

El Vaquero Loco 50K | 50 kilometers | August 08, 2015 | website

Zambia

MOSI-OA-TUNYA TRAIL | 85 kilometers | August 13, 2015 | website

02:05:52 CLOSE

02:11:17

 Links:

 

http://traffic.libsyn.com/talkultra/Episode_92_Albon_Frost.mp3

ITunes http://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/talk-ultra/id497318073

Libsyn – feed://talkultra.libsyn.com/rss

Website – talkultra.com

Jonathan Albon – Tromsø Champion Race Report

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Listen to a full in-depth interview with Jonathan Albon on

TALK ULTRA Podcast Episode 92 out on Friday 7th August.

 

There are many reasons Tromsø SkyRace was set to be one of the highlights of my year. Although a race, I was most looking forward to running in the mountains, crossing streams and the wilderness that this event was set to deliver. There were two race distances – the Tromsdalstind (short) and Hamperokken (long). I’d be taking on the full Hamperokken skyrace which is actually classed as an ultra, more for the time it would take to complete as a opposed to the distance, which was only a modest 45km but had a huge 4400m of elevation gain.

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Knowing this was what lay before me it was with a sadistic smile that I learnt the night before the race that the ski lift to the start wouldn’t open in time so we would have to make our own way up to the start! ‘A good warm up’ Kilian said – well, he was probably right.

Jonathan’s race stats:

45.1km Distance

4,373Elevation

5:48:11 Moving Time

8:10/km Avg Pace

5,842 Calories

screenshot_557 screenshot_558

 

After reaching the start it wasn’t long before we were off. In an attempt to run my own race (unlike in previous races this year) I tried to start easy, warming up into it. It was hard judging were I was placed anyway as the short course started at the same time so I was content with just running. I started with the mindset that I didn’t care where I would place, I would run in the mountains and enjoy myself. So that is what I did. It wasn’t until the top of the first summit, Tromsdalstind, where we turned for a big descent splitting from the short course that I started to get a feel that I was in the top 10.

The summit was covered in snow and the route turned to just drop of the other side of the plateau over what looked like a cliff. It wasn’t until getting closer that you could see it was in fact an extremely steep snowy slope with a rope to assist descent. Thankfully this section wasn’t long but there were plenty more snow fields to slip and slide down on the rest of the descent. The majority though was on loose rocky terrain and steep muddy tracks. Before long I was reaching the valley floor and out of the thick fog, for the first time I could see further than a couple of hundred meters and the sight was surreal.

©iancorless.com_Tromso2015-4640I had settled into a position next to a Swiss guy called Pascal Egli. He seemed to have the same happy attitude I had towards the race and we talked, joked and laughed as we crossed one of the only flat sections on the course between the two mountains.

Reaching the base of the big climb, Hamperokken, we were still together. After a third of the climb I let him go. I had by this point learnt he had come third in the Dolomites skyrace and had only finished something like 40 seconds behind Stian Angermund in the Tromsø vertical kilometer. I definitely didn’t feel worthy to be holding with him and felt I was either holding him back or I was pushing too hard. As it happened he never got more than 10m away. Running the majority but hiking the steepest gradients we were making good time…and catching people, passing two on the climb we just got another two as the ridge started. This put us in a group of 4 with only 1 guy ahead in the lead.

©iancorless.com_Tromso2015-4585I noticed one of our group was Eirik Haugsnes. I’m not sure there would be anyone I would rather be following through what was one of the craziest sections of any race I have ever done. Eirik was last years winner and lives in the Troms area.

Describing the Hamperokekn ridge is difficult. For much of it I was using both my hands and feet for purchase. At one point of the razor edge ridge we had to jump a gap from one rock to another. It was funny to see how our little contingent had gone from racing to simply traversing this dangerous section together. I found myself at the back of the group least experienced in this sort of scrambling and twice found rocks tumbling down towards me from above.

The last 50m ascent to the top was described by Kilian in the race briefing as grade 3 scrambling. I’d describe it as ‘f***ing scary’. With this done it didn’t take long for the race to resume; as soon as we summited the group split as we started to descend. We had crossed paths with the leader, Alberto Hernando, on the way up and were only 2 minutes behind after over 3 hours of racing!

The descent was again as technical as it gets with large boulder fields and steep snowy slides. One particular section that sticks in my mind is where we traversed on snow just 5meters above where it dropped into freezing blue water of a big lake – one slide and you were toast (or ice more likely).

It was shortly after this point that the race started in earnest for me. As the four of us reunited crossing a boulder field it was clear my VJ Irocks were providing far more grip than my competitors shoes. This enabled me to pull away skipping over the rocks bouncing from boulder to boulder. Reaching more even ground with a small lead I just decided to run on and kept putting one foot in front of the other as fast as possible all the way back to the valley floor.

1125066_origComing back into the aid station I learnt I was 1 minute 30 seconds behind Alberto in first. Not thinking I had a hope in hell of catching him I continued to run at a comfortable but fast pace enjoying the brief flat section. Just two kilometers later I noticed I was gaining on a competitor traveling in the same direction as me, I double took not believing my eyes but I had just closed a big lead in next to no time. Coming up behind him I startled him as I don’t think he was expecting to see an Englishman popp up to say hello. I moved passed and at the foot of the last big climb heard a yelp from behind. I immediately stopped and turned, starting to head back, but he shouted at me motioning to continue. It looked as if he had gone over on his ankle. Obeying his command I turned back to the climb ahead.

I knew in my head this was a deciding moment. I would either start to climb and feel good or I would feel terrible and my chances would be nil. Either way I would know within a couple of hundred meters…so I started to climb. I can’t say it was easy but I was doing it. Moving uphill I was pleased with the strength I had. This section was too steep to run or even hike in some places, so using hands and feet I steadily clawed my way up.

About half way I hit the first of the snowfields, remembering coming down with such speed I was now confused as to whether I was meant to follow the same line back up. The snow was only just soft enough to dig a little purchase in with my feet and every step forward resulted in sliding half of one back. So wrapping a buff around each hand I started to claw my way up this too. Hand over foot I slowly made progress.

After 900m of climbing and 300 vertical meters from the top I started to hear the whisper of cow bells on the summit. Knowing the climb was nearly done worsened my condition, but slowly, painfully I was getting there, all the while thinking I had competitors hot on my heels. The last 40 meters were back up the same steep snow slope with a rope and thankfully some snow stairs someone had made (legends). Using the rope to help haul myself up I was there. 3rd and final big climb done and all I could say was ‘I’m f***d’ as a response to everyone’s encouragement.

©iancorless.com_Tromso2015-6804

Now for the descent and a slow gradual climb towards the finish. It wasn’t time to relax, energy started to flow back as I took my first few steps downwards and concentration took over brute force. The path was rocky and technical but also twisting. The thick fog made it hard to see the flags and I had to once backtrack 10meters up to find the correct route. Kicking myself, I still thought I was being hunted by my competition.

This technical path soon gave way to a sweeping trail following a small river and down into the woods and the last aid station. Now just 6km of undulating but climbing track remained and I started to play with the idea I had done it.

I managed to keep a run going the entire way and soon found myself going past groups of people cheering and ringing cowbells. I was getting closer but every time the trail dipped I thought it was for the final time to the finish, only to find another rise around the corner. I still had no idea how far back my competitors where but couldn’t bring myself to gun it, so keeping a safe pace where I knew I would have some gas in the legs for a sprint finish I finally crested the last rise and dropped round to the finish. Giving my now wife a hug I then crossed the finish line and had done what I would always have thought to be impossible…I had won a skyrace.
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This post is published with permission from ©jonathanalbon
Read a race summary here
View race images here
Jonathan Albon is an athlete first known for his success within the up and coming UK obstacle course racing (OCR) scene. He has now taken his exploits global, adding the title of OCR World Champion and Spartan World Champion to his name. Jonathan has enjoyed a busy 2014 where he has proved unbeaten in OCR as well as winning races such as Man v Horse, The Welsh 1000m Peaks Race and TelemarksHelten. He also achieved a remarkable 14th place finish in the Limone Extreme Skyrace and now victory at Tromso SkyRace.
website HERE

Lizzie Wraith GB & NI international to race Mourne Skyline MTR

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Today (Monday 3rd August 2015), NiRunning and Mourne Skyline MTR are pleased to announce that current Great Britain & Northern Ireland international and podium finisher at the recent Dragons Back 200 mile Ultra, Lizzie Wraith, will race this year’s Mourne Skyline Mountain-Trail Race.  Lizzie, a previous winner of the Lakeland 100 Ultra, will join this year’s Lakeland 100 and Lakeland 50 winners Paul Tierney and Jayson Cayvill on the start line, as well as a plethora of talent form around the globe.
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The North Face Lavaredo Ultra Trail podium finisher is enthusiastic about taking on the another event in the Skyrunning UK Series after victory at last year’s 3X3 Ultra in Keswick.  Speaking about the Mourne Skyline MTR, Lizzie said:
“I’m really looking forward to running the Mourne Skyline MTR as I’ve never been to Ireland and it’s been on my bucket list for a long time. The terrain looks really beautiful and technical which is what I love, however 35km is a bit of a sprint for me, I’d better start doing some speed-work!”
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Mourne Skyline MTR Race Director Ryan Maxwell added:
“To have an athlete of Lizzie’s stature compete at the event is a huge bonus for everyone.  Lizzie has performed well at some of the world’s toughest events – look at her performance at the recent Dragons Back Race – going into that off the back of being ill and not only finishing, but claiming a top three finish, was incredible.  Again this year, the entry list reads like a ‘who’s who’ of mountain-trail running in the UK and Ireland which not only excites me, but makes me appreciate the support we have received from everyone.   There will be athletes from fourteen countries coming to Northern Ireland to take part in the Mourne Skyline MTR (and ‘GTR’), which as the Race Director makes me extremely proud.  We hope to add further additions to the line-up in the coming weeks and will do our utmost to ensure that the race exceeds expectations.”
 
Although the Mourne Skyline MTR is now full (except for elite entry applications), you can still be part of an excellent weekend of racing by taking on the Mourne Skyline ‘Granite Trail Race’, a 2 mile uphill only night time race, which will take place on Friday 23rd October 2015 (7.30pm).  
More information is available on the official race website HERE.