The Hong Kong 100 course starts in Pak Tam Chung on the east side of Hong Kong’s New Territories and winds its way west along coastal paths, across beaches, through ancient villages, over hills and through valleys before finishing after the descent of Tai Mo Shan, Hong Kong’s highest peak (at 957m). The 100km journey climbs over 4,500m and much of the climbing is in the second half of the course.
The first race in the new UTWT 2015 calendar (Ultra Trail World Tour.) The UTWT have progressed in 2014 and they have started to assemble not only a solid of list of races but also an ever expanding list of racers who will take part. Francois d’Haene and Nuria Picas were crowned 2014 champions and nobody would doubt the credibility of either athelete or the impressive results they both had last year.
A series must start somewhere and HK100 may not have a stacked field but the next race in New Zealand,Tarawera, will see a more international runners and ever expansive field.
Current course records are held by Ryan Sandes and Claire Price; 9:54:57 and 11:58:04 respectively.
Ladies (alphabetical order)
Liza Borzani – incredible double at TDS and Tor des Geants
Francesca Canepa – Ever consistent performer, hot favourite for HK100 and looking to make amends after that DQ at Tor des Geants
Stephanie Case – Is a little unknown really in terms of recent form, she had a good UTMB in 2013 but other than that?
Dong Li – won the recent MSIG Lantau 88k.
Marie McNaughton – is from New Zealand and I have been told by many Southern Hemisphere friends that she is one to watch. I have to say, I know little about her. Marie did place 2nd at TNF100k a month or so ago.
Claire Price – Current course record holder and a hot favourite with Francesca Canepa. Claire raced at Mont Blanc 80k in 2014 and seemed to struggle? However, this is home soil and she knows how to race here.
Nora Senn – Won the race in 2012 and that makes her podium material again this year.
Sondre Amdahl – is a real rising star. He has had some incredible results recently, highlights being two top-10 finishes at UTMB and Transgrancanaria. He is a little intimidating to watch though… I have never seen anyone have such determination in their eyes.
Cyril Cointre – is the first of the ever present WAA trio (Christophe Le Saux and Antoine Guillon the other two) and although he wont win he will be up there (top-5?) You have to respect the quantity of races this trio do!
Jordi Gamito – has all the potential to rock the apple cart and place top-5. He is relatively unknown and that will play into his hands.
Antoine Guillon – as above
Yoshikazu Hara – Is a mystery, on paper a raw talent who could quite easily win the race. However, his 2014 was troubled apart from an incredible 24-hour which was not that long ago. Jury is out – 1st or 10th?
Vlad Ixel – would have been my tip for the win but he recently rolled an ankle so I am not even sure he will race. If he does and he is 100% in form, he could very well blitz this race! Keep an eye on him.
Dave James – I know Dave well. I have seen him race in Costa Rica looking fit, mean and dedicated and then I have seen him struggle. His 2014 was troubled with injury so HK100 is a question mark. He has the speed and is great at 100-miles, so, if he can string it together he is one to watch.
Christophe Le Saux – makes up the WAA trio. He will make his presence felt but not podium potential.
Jeremy Ritcey – On a good day he could win this race. However, his current form is unknown and leaves a question mark.
Stone Tsang – was 2nd in 2013 and for me, along with Vlad (if fit) is a potential winner.
There is a plethora of local talent, both male and female who will mix it up so expect plenty of surprises.
Race website HERE