Ultra Tour de Monte Rosa 2015 #UTMR gets underway

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All images ©LloydBelcherVisuals – no reproduction, sharing or distribution

Inaugural stage of the Ultra Tour de Monte Rosa.

Cervinia, Val d’Aosta 20 August 2015

119 runners from 17 countries started the inaugural Ultra Tour de Monte Rosa (UTMR), a 106km trail race in three-stages, from Cervinia (Italy) to Grächen (Switzerland).

Lizzy Hawker, five-times Ultra-Trail du Mont Blanc (UTMB) winner and UTMR Race Director, launched her zero-edition three-stage trail race in the shadow of Cervino.

“These mountains have held my curiosity and passion since I was a child. I realised that these are the trails that I wanted to share with other runners. It is something special to create a race here,” said Hawker.

31% of the participants are women at UTMR, which is unusually high for a long distance trail race.

“It’s great to have increasing numbers of women entering into this sport,” said Hawker.

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“There were so many happy people out there”, said Anna Troup, from the flatlands of London.

The race was started by Hervé Barmasse, Alpine Mountain Guide Instructor and Tourism Ambassador for Val D’Aosta.

“It’s very exciting to have a new trail running concept starting in Cervinia on the region’s premier hiking trails.”

Stage one saw a close competition between Matthias Ihler from Germany who pipped Austrian Martin Gansterer by less than a minute. The first female runner Katie Roby came in ranked seventh overall and takes a 14 minute advantage into day two over Krissy Moehl (US).

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The second stage begins tomorrow morning at 6am and will be started by the oldest Mountain Guide in Gressoney. The second stage runs from Staffal to Macugnaga, a 36.5km route with a positive elevation of 2673m. It crosses the Col de Turlo, an ancient road, rebuilt by prisoners of war in World War II.

A 150km single-stage edition of the race is planned for August 2016. UTMR Leaders after Day 1

TOP 5 MEN

Matthias Ihler (DEU) 03:30:04

Martin Gansterer (AUT) 03:30:29

José Luis Arnal (ESP) 03:39:55

Andrea Zangarini (ITA) 03:43:15

Adam Stirk (GBR) 03:52:34

TOP 5 WOMEN

Katie Roby (GBR) 04:07:51

Krissy Moehl (USA) 04:22:55

Jennifer Bradley (GBR) 04:37:11

Denise Janin (ITA) 04:37:39

Elisabeth Blanc (FRA) 04:39:29

All images ©LloydBelcherVisuals – no reproduction, sharing or distribution

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