High Trail Vanoise Ultra and Face de Bellevarde VK 2016 Race Preview – Skyrunner® World Series


Skyrunning and the 2016 Skyrunner World Series arrives in France this weekend for an action packed double bill of VK and ULTRA. On Friday, the Face de Bellevarde VK kicks off in Val D’Isere to take on the steep slopes that lead to the summit way up in the sky.
Marco De Gasperi, Skyrunning legend has the record of 34:51 set on this course many years ago and this year, up and coming rising star, Remi Bonnet will be looking to set a new benchmark. The young runner won’t have it all his own way though, Ferran Teixido, current leader in the SWS rankings will be looking for a strong performance and the ever present, Urban Zemmer will push the young gun all the way to the summit. Marco Moletto, Hannes Perkman, William Bon Mardion and Pascal Egli will make up the main contenders in an impressive field.
For the ladies, Christelle Dewalle is the current SWS leader and ultimately the one to beat! Elisa Desco, Emily Collinge and Serena Vittori will push the French lady hard but can they beat Laura Orgue’s time of 40:52?
In both races, an incentive is on offer. Should a male or female break the old course records they will receive a cash prize of 2000 euros. If the runner is French, the opportunity to have a new BMW car is available for one year!


High Trail Vanoise is the main event of the weekend and it harks back to the golden days of when Giacometti, Brunod and climbed Monte Rosa and paved the way for this modern phenomenon called Skyrunning. Ice, snow, glaciers, altitude, the High Trail Vanoise has it all. Crossing the iconic Col D’Iseran at 2764m is merely just a taster, the high point of the course is the impressive Grande Motte at 3653m. It’s a tough race, 67km in length, runners will climb (and descend) 5400m to reach the finish line.


Cristofer Clemente heads up there men’s field after an impressive top 10 at Transvulcania and victory at Ultra SkyMarathon Madeira. Nicolas Martin, Nuno Silva, Jan Bartas, Dimity Mityaev and the ever-present Fulvio Dapit will look to take top honours and maximum SWS points.


Gemma Arenas fresh from victory in Madeira will be looking to consolidate maximum points and set herself up for a good chance of winning the 2016 SWS. Local French lady Anne-Lise Rousset may well have other thoughts though! Anna Comet has been fighting injury issues but a finish in Madeira and some quality RnR will hopefully set her up for a strong run in France. Travelling from the USA, Kristina Pattison will be looking to repeat her top 10 performance from Madeira and work her way up the rankings ahead of the RUT in the USA.


Just as in the VK, prize money is on offer and the respective winners can expect 3000 euros or French runners will receive 1000 euro and a BMW for a year.
Alpina Watches, sponsored of the SWS will also offer a male and female watch for the Alpina Smart Time.

600 runners will take part in a stunning weekend of high intensity action.


Thanks to the support of our Partner Migu Xempower, Sponsor Alpina Watches and Official Pool Suppliers, Scott RunningCompressport and Salomon.

About Skyrunner® World Series
Skyrunning was founded in 1992 by Italian Marino Giacometti, President of the International Skyrunning Federation which sanctions the discipline worldwide and sports the tagline:
Less cloud. More sky.

The Skyrunner® World Series was launched in 2004 and has grown to represent the peak of outdoor running defined by altitude and technicality. In 2016, the Series, composed of four disciplines, features 23 races in 15 venues on three continents.

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Episode 91 – Boulet Nichols Robbins Forsberg

Talk Ultra Logo

Episode 91 of Talk Ultra brings you with interviews Mont-Blanc 80km winner, Alex Nichols, we speak with WSER ladies winner Magdalena Boulet and we also chat with Gary Robbins about his FKT. Emelie Forsberg is back for a Smiles and Miles and this week Niandi Carmont co-hosts as Karl is getting ready for Speedgoat.

00:11:38 NEWS

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

HARDROCK 100

  1. Kilian Jornet 23:28 new CR and holds records both ways now
  2. Mike Foote 25:45
  3. Adam Campbell 26:49
  1. Anna Frost 28:22
  2. Darcy Piceu 28:57 won 3 times before
  3. Darla Askew 32:05

 

ICE TRAIL TARENTAISE article HERE

1 – Luis Alberto  HERNANDO 07:43:00

2 – Manuel MERILLAS MOLEDO 07:50:27

3 – Clement MOLLIET 07:54:29

1 – Emelie FORSBERG 09:17:21

2 – Magdalena LACZAK 09:30:37

3 – Anna STRAKOVA 09:48:46

FKT for Gary Robbins – In Washington on the 95-mile Wonderland Trail around Mount Rainier, Gary Robbins ran 18:52 to cut just over two hours from Kyle Skaggs’s previous supported record, which had stood since 2006.

00:35:48 INTERVIEW

Gary Robbins

SCOTT JUREK completes the AT 46 days 8 hours 7 or is it 8 minutes? article HERE 

DOLOMITES SKYRACE article HERE

  1. Tadei Pivk 2:02:47
  2. Ionut Zinca 2:03:18
  3. Pascal Egli 2:03:46
  1. Megan Kimmel 2:25:57 – new CR
  2. Laura Orgue 2:26:58
  3. Elisa Desco 2:28:36

EIGER ULTRA TRAIL

  1. Caroline Chaverot 12:45
  2. Andrea Huser 12:52
  3. Francesca Canepa 13:13
  1. Urs Jenzer 11:44
  2. Jason Schlarb 11:50
  3. Davis Quelhas 12:27

MARCO DE GASPERI set a new FKT. He raced from Courmayeur up 15,780-foot Mont Blanc in 6:43:52, just under the previous 6:45:24 mark that had stood since 1995. The route covers nearly 50k while gaining 12,303 feet of elevation.

COLORADO 14ers RECORD After 9 days, 21 hours, and 51 minutes, Andrew Hamilton had climbed all 58 of Colorado’s 14000-foot peaks and was the new FKT holder.

01:27:00 INTERVIEW

AKEX NICHOLS

TALK TRAINING 

How to pick the correct shoe article HERE

02:11:26 INTERVIEW

MAGDALENA BOULET

02:54:23 SMILES AND MILES with Emelie Forsberg

UP & COMING RACES

Australia

New South Wales

Altra Centennial Park Ultra100km | 100 kilometers | August 02, 2015 | website

Altra Centennial Park Ultra 50km | 50 kilometers | August 02, 2015 | website

Queensland

Flinders Tour – 50 km | 50 kilometers | July 26, 2015 | website

Austria

Dirndltal Extrem Ultramarathon | 111 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

Canada

Alberta

Canadian Death Race | 125 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

Quebec

Pandora 24 Ultra X Trail 100M | 100 miles | July 25, 2015 | website

Ecuador

RacingThePlanet: Ecuador 2015 | 250 kilometers | July 26, 2015 | website

Finland

Lapland

NUTS Midnight Sun Trail Ultra 125 km | 125 kilometers | July 24, 2015 | website

NUTS Midnight Sun Trail Ultra 55K | 55 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

France

Haute-Corse

Via Romana – 62 km | 62 kilometers | August 02, 2015 | website

Haute-Loire

La Loire Integrale | 1025 kilometers | August 05, 2015 | website

Haute-Savoie

Trail du Tour des Fiz | 61 kilometers | July 26, 2015 | website

Isère

Défi de l’Oisans | 200 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Trail de L’Etendard | 65 kilometers | August 02, 2015 | website

Jura

Tour du Lac de Vouglans | 71 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

Savoie

Courchevel X Trail 54 km | 54 kilometers | August 02, 2015 | website

EDF Cenis Tour 50 | 50 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

EDF Cenis Tour 73 | 73 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

La 6000D | 63 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Germany

Bavaria

Chiemgauer 100 k Mountain Ultra Run | 100 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Chiemgauer 100 mi Mountain Ultra Run | 100 miles | July 25, 2015 | website

Chiemsee-Ultramarathon Juli | 108 kilometers | July 31, 2015 | website

Brandenburg

Berliner MauerwegNachtlauf | 62 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Lower Saxony

Süntel-Trail 50K | 50 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Guadeloupe

Rèd Mammel | 50 kilometers | July 24, 2015 | website

Ultra Transkarukera | 120 kilometers | July 24, 2015 | website

India

Himachal Pradesh

The Himalayan Crossing | 353 kilometers | July 27, 2015 | website

The SPITI | 126 kilometers | July 30, 2015 | website

Indonesia

Les Foulées de la Soie en indonénie | 100 kilometers | August 06, 2015 | website

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

Ireland

Munster

Keith Whyte Waterfront Ultra Marathon | 36 miles | July 25, 2015 | website

Italy

Aosta Valley

Monte Rosa Walser Ultra Trail | 50 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

Sicily

Etna Trail | 64 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol

Südtirol Ultra Skyrace – 121 km | 121 kilometers | July 24, 2015 | website

Südtirol Ultra Skyrace – 66 km | 66 kilometers | July 24, 2015 | website

Veneto

Trans d’Havet Ultra | 80 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Latvia

Cēsis ECO Trail 80 km | 80 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

Madagascar

Isalo Raid – Grand Raid | 80 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Mauritius

Trail des 7 Couleurs | 120 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

Mongolia

Mongolia Sunrise to Sunset 100K | 100 kilometers | August 05, 2015 | website

Peru

Moyobamba Trail Running Festival | 80 kilometers | July 26, 2015 | website

Philippines

TransCebu Ultramarathon 105 Km | 105 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

TransCebu Ultramarathon 55 Km | 55 kilometers | July 26, 2015 | website

Portugal

Ultra-Trail Nocturno da Lagoa de Óbidos | 50 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

Réunion

Trail du Grand Ouest | 60 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

Russia

Elbrus Mountain Race by adidas outdoor | 105 kilometers | July 30, 2015 | website

Golden Ring Ultra Trail | 50 kilometers | August 02, 2015 | website

Golden Ring Ultra Trail 100 | 100 kilometers | August 02, 2015 | website

Singapore

50 km | 50 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Spain

Aragon

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

Gran Trail Aneto-Posets | 109 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Vuelta al Aneto | 58 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Cantabria

Trail La Herradura de Campoo – 55 km | 55 kilometers | July 26, 2015 | website

Trail La Herradura de Campoo – Trail Etapas 28+32 | 60 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Catalonia

Ultra Catllaràs | 55 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Principality of Asturias

Ultra Trail DesafíOSOmiedo | 86 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

Sweden

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

Switzerland

Grisons

Swiss Alpine Marathon K78 | 78 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Obwald

MOUNTAINMAN Ultra | 80 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Ticino

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

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

Valais

La Spéci-Men | 72 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Turkey

RunFire Cappadocia Ultra Marathon | 220 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

United Kingdom

East Riding of Yorkshire

The Montane Lakeland 100 | 100 miles | July 24, 2015 | website

The Montane Lakeland 50 | 50 miles | July 25, 2015 | website

England

Round the Rock | 48 miles | August 01, 2015 | website

Round the Rock Ultra Marathon | 48 miles | August 01, 2015 | website

Hampshire

Oxfam Trailwalker GB (South) | 100 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Stirling

Devil o’ the Highlands Footrace | 43 miles | August 01, 2015 | website

USA

Alaska

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

Arizona

Vertigo 63K Night Trail Run | 63 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

Arkansas

Full mOOn 50K | 50 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

California

Angeles Crest 100 mile endurance run | 100 miles | August 01, 2015 | website

Badwater 135 | 135 miles | July 28, 2015 | website

Big Basin Trail Run 50 km | 50 kilometers | July 26, 2015 | website

Harding Hustle 50K | 50 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Montaña de Oro 50km | 50 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

San Francisco Ultramarathon | 52 miles | July 26, 2015 | website

Colorado

Grand Mesa 100M | 100 miles | July 25, 2015 | website

Grand Mesa 37.5M | 60 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Grand Mesa 50M | 50 miles | July 25, 2015 | website

Never Summer 100km | 100 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Ouray 100 Mile Endurance Run | 100 miles | July 31, 2015 | website

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

Wild West Relay | 200 miles | July 31, 2015 | website

Idaho

Wild Idaho 50K Enrudance Run | 50 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

Wild Idaho 50M Enrudance Run | 50 miles | August 01, 2015 | website

Maine

Down East Sunrise Trail Team Relay | 102 miles | July 24, 2015 | website

Maryland

Catoctin 50k Trail Run | 50 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Minnesota

Minnesota Voyageur Trail 50 Mile Run | 50 miles | July 25, 2015 | website

Montana

HURL Elkhorn 50 K Ultramarathon | 50 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

HURL Elkhorn 50 Mile Ultramarathon | 50 miles | August 01, 2015 | website

Nevada

Ruby Mountain Relay | 184 miles | July 31, 2015 | website

North Carolina

Mattamuskeet Death March | 100 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

The March | 50 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Ohio

Burning River 100 Mile Endurance Run | 100 miles | July 25, 2015 | website

Burning River 50 Mile Endurance Run | 50 miles | July 25, 2015 | website

Oregon

Cascade Lakes Relay | 132 miles | July 31, 2015 | website

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

Relay | 132 miles | July 31, 2015 | website

Siskiyou Out Back Trail Run 50K | 50 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Siskiyou Out Back Trail Run 50M | 50 miles | July 25, 2015 | website

Pennsylvania

Viaduct Trail 100 Mile Ultramarathon | 100 miles | August 01, 2015 | website

Viaduct Trail 50 Mile Ultramarathon | 50 miles | August 01, 2015 | website

Texas

50K | 50 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

Utah

Kat’cina Mosa 100K Mountain Challenge Run | 100 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

Speedgoat 50K Ultra Marathon | 50 kilometers | July 25, 2015 | website

Ultra Adventure Tushars 100 Mile | 100 miles | July 31, 2015 | website

Ultra Adventure Tushars 93K | 93 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

Vermont

Moosalamoo Ultra – 36 M | 36 miles | August 01, 2015 | website

Virginia

Dahlgren Heritage Rail Trail 50 km | 50 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

Washington

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

Grand Ridge 50K Trail Run (August) | 50 kilometers | August 01, 2015 | website

White River 50 Mile Trail Run | 50 miles | July 25, 2015 | website

03:11:15 CLOSE

03:14:45

Show links:

Website – talkultra.com

Ice Trail Tarentaise 2015 – Skyrunning European Championships

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Emelie Forsberg & Luis Alberto Hernando

2015 Skyrunning European Champions

©iancorless.com_ITT2015-9984

 

Luis Alberto Hernando and Emelie Forsberg do the double! Skyrunning World Champions (2015) and now 2015 Skyrunning European Champion at the Ice Trail Tarentaise, Val d’Isere.

Following on from respective Transvulcania Ultramarathon victories, the dynamic duo of Hernando and Forsberg once again showed the Skyrunning ultra runners that they are the ones to beat.

Hernando was pushed close by rising star Manuel Merillas whereas Forsberg had a clear run to the line despite finding the conditions tough.

Magdalena Laczak fulfilled her potential by taking the 2nd place on the ladies podium and it was a blast from the past Anna Strakova put in a final surge for the final podium spot.

In the men’s race, Fulvio Dapit looked certain to take the final podium place but complained his legs were shot on the final climb.  Clement Molliet seized an opportunity and relegated Dapit off the podium.

RACE LEADERS

1 – Luis Alberto  HERNANDO 07:43:00

2 – Manuel MERILLAS MOLEDO 07:50:27

3 – Clement MOLLIET 07:54:29

WOMEN RACE LEADERS

1 – Emelie FORSBERG 09:17:21

2 – Magdalena LACZAK 09:30:37

3 – Anna STRAKOVA 09:48:46

More news and a detailed race report to follow.

Here is a selection of images from the day all ©iancorless.com – all rights reserved

Skyrunning Ice Trail Tarentaise 2015 Race Preview #ITT2015

 

©iancorless.comIMG_0945The stunning alpine village of Val d’Isère is the official home of the next two races in the Skyrunner® calendar, the Ice Trail Tarentaise which is the Skyrunning Continental Championship for the Ultra distance and the Bellevarde Vertical Kilometer the first VK in the Skyrunner® World Series.

Val d’Isere is a haven for alpinists wanting to test themselves on the iconic slopes of Meribel, Val Thorens, Courchavel; it is affectionately known as the ‘Le Trois Vallees’. The Ice Trail Tarentaise (ITT) starts and concludes in this beautiful mountain retreat.

The ITT has over 60 km’s above 2000m altitude and with a highest point of 3653m at ‘Grande Motte.’ In just a couple of years, the race has gained a reputation for being one of the most ‘extreme’ races in the Skyrunner® calendar, it is a race not to be taken lightly!

profil_itt_georando

Traversing glaciers, ascending and descending summits such as ‘Aiguille Pers’ at 3386m, ropes, ladders, way markers, peaks at over 3000m and 5000m +/- ascent and descent guarantees that not everyone will see the finishing tape. The ITT is very true to the heritage of Skyrunning and it harks back to the late 80’s and early 90’s when ISF President, Marino Giacometti pioneered a new form of Alpinism.

 

Who is running?

Men

©iancorless.com_Transvulcania2015-8400

ITT has always had a high quality field assemble and 2015 is no different. Luis Alberto Hernando heads up the men’s field after his recent victory at Transvulcania Ultramarathon and placing 2nd at the IAU World Trail Championships. Luis ran ITT last year but pulled out whilst in 2nd place. I am convinced that we won’t see that happen this year and for me, Luis is the hot favourite for victory. He is without doubt in his element on tough courses (with snow) between the 50-100km distance.

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Manuel Merillas is a rising star in Skyrunning and had an incredible 2014. He placed 5th at ITT in 2014, which will most definitely provide him with a great deal of experience coming into the 2015 edition. The recent Transvulcania Ultramarathon did not go well for Manuel; he looked primed for the podium in the first half of the race but then struggled in the latter stages to finish outside the top 10. He showed amazing powers of recovery by bouncing back just 1 week later at Zegama-Aizkorri and placing 2nd. One to watch!

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Fabien Antolinus had a great race in 2014 and placed 2nd behind Francois d’Haene. He does however seem to blow hot and cold and can be a little unpredictable. For sure, he has all the skills and talent required to perform at the highest level. He may well be a podium contender but I don’t see him toppling Luis.

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Pablo Villa shot to our attention in 2014 when he had a great run at Transvulcania Ultramarathon. Shifting sponsors (now Salomon) he backed that performance up with 8th at the 2015 edition of the race. Pablo is a top 10 contender and should he have a great day, the top 5 may well be a possibility.

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Fulvio Dapit has all the potential to make the podium at ITT. On his day, he is a superb mountain runner and he excels when the terrain is ‘challenging.’ He placed 4th at ITT in the last edition. Recently though he had a tough performance at Lavaredo, however, he did pull out and that may well have saved his ITT performance.

French champion (2013), Sebastien Spehler had victories at TTN and 6000D in 2014. His recent form is a little unknown but he may well make the top 10?

Benoit Cori placed 13th at the IAU World Trail Championships and won Templiers in 2014. The ITT course is far removed from both those courses but Benoit obviously has speed.

Marcin Swierc is another runner who will make his presence felt in the top 10. He placed 8th at Mont-Blanc Marathon and 9th at Templiers and 4th at the recent Mont-Blanc 80km. So it is clear to see that he has speed and strength. ITT adds other aspects and his final result will very much depend on how he can handle snow, ice and additional technical running.

Christophe Perillat is not a runner I know a great deal about. However, he did place 2nd at the 2014 CCC. So with that in mind, he is no slouch in the mountains.

©iancorless.com_Transgrancanaria15-6255

Cyril Cointre may well start the race? I need to have this confirmed. If he does, he will be a contender at the front of the race. He races extensively, some may say too much but despite this, he always pulls out the results. Recently he finished ahead of Anton Krupicka at Transgrancanaria.

Franco Colle knows how to run in the mountains; look at his results at Tor des Geants. The ITT terrain will suit him but will it be too short and too fast? He certainly performed exceptionally well at Mont-Blanc 80k when he placed 2nd behind Alex Nichols.

Several other names on the start sheet jump out at me:

©iancorless.com_Nepal2014_7-1106

Zigor Iturrieta has been there and done it in racing. I was last at a race with him in Nepal when he ran Everest Trail Race (he placed 3rd) and he always manages to pull out the stops for strong consistent results.

©iancorless.com_DragonsBack2015Day2-6456

Pavel Paloncy is a renowned adventure racer, 2-x winner of the UK’s Spine Race and recently raced The Dragons Back and would have placed well overall had it not been for a bad fall on day 1. Pavel is a strong and gritty runner. I do wonder though if this race may be too short and too fast for Pavel?

©iancorless.com-0860Kima2014_

Stuart Air from the UK has run well at ITT before and top 10 would be a great result.

Ones to watch:

Daniel Garcia, Jessed Hernandez, Robert Niewland, Pawel Dybek,

 

Ladies

©iancorless.com_Transvulcania2015-9333

Emelie Forsberg has won ITT 2 x and I have no reason to doubt or question that she will do it again. It’s a course she loves, the terrain suits her and she has great memories. Last weekend she won and set a new course record in Alaska at Mount Marathon. It was 50-minute race but just today (Tuesday) she said her legs are tired! I think they will be okay for the weekend. Her performance and victory (off ski’s) at Transvulcania Ultramarathon in 2015 confirms that Emelie is the one to beat!

©iancorless.com_Transvulcania2015-9587

Anna Comet Pascua is on fire at the moment. I witnessed Anna win Everest Trail Race at the end of 2014 and she said then that she planned to race the Skyrunning circuit in 2015. A podium place at Transvulcania Ultramarathon and then a follow up podium behind Mira Rai at Mont-Blanc 80km confirms that Anna is doing something right. Just as in La Palma, I don’t think Anna has the race to beat Emelie but anything can happen?

©iancorless.comIMG_4811

It will not be an easy ride for Emelie and Maud Gobert will make sure of that. Maud placed 2nd at ITT in 2014 and although she races lees now than in the past, on her day she can still make her presence felt.

Anne Lise Rousset placed 4th at the IAU World Championships and although she has great potential for top 5 or maybe even the podium, I don’t see her coming close to Emelie on a course like this.

Magdalena Laczack however may well prove to be the dark horse of the race and is my top tip for 2nd place and should Emelie falter, Magdalena could possibly take the victory? Her 3rd place behind Emelie and Frosty at the Skyrunning World Championships (80km) in Chamonix confirms this.

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Nuria Dominguez is an ever present on the Skyrunning circuit and always gets the job done. She has placed top 10 at Transgrancanaria, Zegama-Aizkorri, Dolomites SkyRace, Trans D’Havet, Limone Extreme and so on. Top 5 is a distinct possibility and most certainly a podium contender on a good day!

Beth Cardelli is one of the strongest runners in the Southern Hemisphere and won one of the shorter races at ITT in 2013. Climbing and long distance running is her forte and I am sure if she is making the journey from Australia she will be fired up for a great run. Recently she placed 4th at Mt Difficulty and 3rd at Buffalo Stampede when Landie Greyling topped the podium.

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Ester Alves seems to be running everything at the moment. I would say ‘too much’ for her to have any potential for the podium at ITT but she may well make the top 5 and top 10 should be guaranteed if all goes well. Recently she placed 2nd behind Stevie Kremer at Ultra SkyMarathon Madeira.

Ones to watch:

Ragna Debats, Frederica Boifava, Anna Strakova, Sarah Vieuielle and Virginie Govignon.

*****

The Ice Trail Tarentaise weekend is also renowned for the Bellevarde Vertical Kilometer, which was reintroduced in 2014.

The course is a tough one, which may include snow although this looks unlikely after recent high temperatures throughout Europe. This race may well prove to be very exciting, as Francois Gonon will run after his recent excellent CR on the vertical slopes in Chamonix.

Ones to watch:

Men

  • Francois Gonon
  • Nejc Kuhar
  • Marco Moletto
  • Ferran Teixido
  • Xavier Teixido
  • William Bon Mardion
  • Eirik Haugsness
  • Remi Bonnet

 

Ladies

  • Laura Orgue
  • Stephanie Jimenez
  • Emelie Forsberg (tbc)
  • Azara Garcia
  • Therese Sjursen
  • Erika Forni
  • Serena Vittori
  • Ekaterina Mityaev
  • Zhana Vokueva

Follow the racing in images and words on this website, on Facebook.com/iancorlessphotography on Twitter @talkultra and on Instagram @iancorlessphotography

Race Tweets will come to you via @skyrunning_com and on the Skyrunning Facebook page.

Ice Trail Tarentaise 2014 – Race Day Images & Report

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Race day images from the 2014 Skyrunning Ice Trail Tarentaise

Race start images HERE

Press conference images HERE

It was a tough day in the mountains with low mist, persistent rain and at times, very cold temperatures. Francois d’Haene, runner up in 2013 and winner in 2012 was one again on top of the podium with a strong and dominant performance.

Equally, 2013 champion, Emelie Forsberg produced a great back-to-back performance and lead the ladies race from beginning to end.

Newly crowned Skyrunning Ultra World Champion, Luis Alberto Hernando was a key protagonist for much of the race but decided to drop in the latter stages. We can only assume that fatigue was an issue after his impressive performance in Chamonix!

Tom Owens from the UK ran at the from of the race all day and although he gave a place away in the latter stages to Fabian Antolinos from France (who placed 2nd), he was really pleased with a podium place.

Francesca Canepa had expected to be a force in the ladies race, however, an early fall took her out  leaving the podium places wide open. Allessandra Carlini (Italy) and Maud Gobert (France) battled for much of the day and it was Carlini who managesd to sprint for the line and take 2nd.

Men 

  1. Francois d”Haene 7:38
  2. Fabian Antonilos 7:56
  3. Tom Owens 8:02

Ladies

  1. Emelie Forsberg 9:25
  2. Allessandra Carlini 9:42
  3. Maud Gobert 9:42+

Attention now turns to Canazei and the Dolomites. This coming Friday is a VK and on Sunday it is the Dolomites Skyrace which will see both Emelie Forsberg and Kilian Jornet race.

All images available to purchase at iancorless.photoshelter.com

 

Ice Trail Tarentaise 2014 – Race Start Images

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The 2014 Ice Trail Tarentaise got underway at 0400 Sunday 13th July. It was a wet start but temperatures were mild and everyone was enthusiastic at the tough challenge that would be ahead.

Ones to watch in the men are Francois d’Haene winner of the ITT in 2012 and 2nd in 2013 behind Kilian Jornet and Luis Alberto Hernando who beat Francois in Chamonix just 2-weeks ago.

For the ladies, Emelie Forsberg 2013 champion returns but she will have strong competition from Francesca Canepa and Maud Gobert amongst others.

Race Preview HERE

Ice Trail Tarentaise Press Conference Images 2014

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The Skyrunner World Series – Ice Trail Tarentaise gets underway at 0400 Sunday 13th July from the town of Val D’Isere, France.

A press conference was held today, 1100hrs with many of the top elite runners assembled.

Luis Alberto Hernando and Emelie Forsberg, were crowned Skyrunning World Champions just 2-weeks ago in Chamonix. Will they be triumphant in Val D’Isere?

Luis will have strong competition from Francois d’Haene who placed 2nd to Kilian Jornet in the 2013 edition. In addition, we can expect strong performances from Tom Owens, Fulvio Dapit, Fabien AntolinosCaine Warburton, Vlad Ixel, Matt Cooper plus many more!

Francesca Canepa from Italy has been a last minute entry and will pressure Emelie along with Nuria Dominguez.

You can read a race preview HERE

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Ice Trail Tarentaise 2014 Race Preview

Ice Trail Tarentaise

The stunning alpine village of Val d’Isère is the official home of the next two races in the Skyrunner® World Series: the Ice Trail Tarentaise and Bellvarde Vertical Kilometer. The ITT starts and concludes in this beautiful mountain retreat and as the name suggests, it is also the source of the Isère River. The Isère flows through some of the most iconic mountain landscape available. It is a haven for alpinists wanting to test themselves on the iconic slopes of Meribel, Val Thorens, Courchavel; it is affectionately known as the ‘Le Trois Vallees’.

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The Tarentaise valley and the Ice Trail Tarentaise in many respects personify what Kilian Jornet has been pursuing for years, the term ‘Alpinism’ is often perceived as climbing but it is so much more.

The race route has over 60 km’s above 2000m altitude and with a highest point of 3653m at ‘Grande Motte’ this is a race not to be taken lightly. Memories of the Tour de France flood into my mind when I discuss this region, however, other than the highest paved mountain pass at the ‘Col de L’Iseran’ at 2770m, no bicycles will be seen.

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Traversing glaciers, ascending and descending summits such as ‘Aiguille Pers’ at 3386m, participants in the 2014 Ice Trail Tarentaise will no doubt have a full appreciation of what Kilian and others like him strive for when they coin the term, Alpinism.

Ropes, ladders, way markers, peaks at over 3000m and 5000m +/- ascent and descent guarantees that not all those who toe the line will see the finish. It is a tough-tough race, no doubt!

65km / 5000mD + –

Starting July 13, 2014 at 04:00 / Centre station Val d’Isère.

Men

Luis Alberto Hernando

Luis Alberto Hernando

Luis Alberto Hernado is on a roll in 2014. Victor at Transvulcania La Palma and recently crowned Skyrunning World Champion for the Ultra distance in Chamonix, one has to say that Luis is the hot favourite for glory in Val d’Isère. Running with 100% commitment, Luis is a frightening force on any trail or mountain and his commitment is motivating. Tempered with a wonderful friendly nature, Luis is without doubt an increasingly popular choice by ultra, trail and Skyrunning aficionados. I for one hugely respect Luis’s ability and his approachable, modest and friendly nature. Luis has great experience of snow and ice and although the ITT field has depth, this may well be a re run of Hernando and d’Haene going head-to-head.

Francois d'Haene

Francois d’Haene

François d’Haene ran toe-to-toe with Kilian Jornet for the 2013 edition of the ITT and it was only in the latter stages of the race that Kilian clicked up a gear and pulled away for victory. Francois, like Luis is an extremely talented and likeable guy! I know this isn’t a personality contest but the addition of good characteristics helps. Francois produced a remarkable UTMF victory a couple of months ago and just last week placed 2nd behind Luis in Chamonix for the Skyrunning worlds. I have to say that I think that Francois may just have the edge of Luis on this course. One thing is for sure; it’s going to be real close and a great battle.

Ricky Lightfoot had to miss the Skyrunning worlds due to work pressure so I am really excited to se him toe the line in Val d’Isère. He’s an incredible talent and may well just slip under the radar at Tarentaise. In 2013 Ricky had a couple of incredible results, particularly at The Otter in South Africa and IAU World Trail Championships. In 2014, Ricky beat Tom Owens at the iconic Three Peaks fell race, so, we can expect a great performance. Withdrawn

Tom Owens

Tom Owens

Tom Owens ran his first ultra in May at Transvulcania La Palma and placed well within the top-10 with a world-class performance. At Zegama-Aizkorri the impact of Transvulcania took its toll and although Tom had a great run it was probably a little below expectation. Jump to one week ago and Tom made the final podium slot behind Kilian Jornet and Michel Lanne at the SKY distance in the Skyrunning World Championships. Ice Trail will be a real test and adventure for Tom but I think we can expect to see him in the mix.

Fulvio Dapit placed 4th at this race last year and I have no reason to think that an equal or better performance can be expected in 2014. The only question mark will come in regard to Fulvio’s recovery. He raced at Lavaredo Ultra Trail just 7-days ago and was a dominant force over the first half of the race.

Caine Warburton

Caine Warburton

Caine Warburton from Australia was one of the Aussie trio who placed in the top-10 in Chamonix. Needless to say, this has placed Caine from well under the radar to a ‘one-to-watch.’ Ice Trail Tarentaise however will be a very different race to the one experienced in the Skyrunning World Champs. Caine’s performance will come down to 2-key elements: recovery post Chamonix and his ability to run on snow and ice. He’s a top-10 contender.

Matt Cooper is another Aussie who raced in Chamonix but he had a below par performance, particularly if we compare it to his 2013 Ronda dels Cims performance. I personally think that Ice Trail may well suit Matt’s skill set and although the podium may be ambitious, a top-5 and certainly top-10 is a distinct possibility.

Pau Bortololo Roca has placed in and around the top-10 consistently at high-key races. In 2014, Pau has won 2-races: Ultra Trail Barcelona and Transgrancanaria 82km. Unless a disaster happens at the front of the race, I don’t see Pau a contender for the win but top-5 is a distinct possibility and should all things align, the podium is not out of reach.

Aurelien Dunand-Pallaz placed 7th at the 2013 CCC showing a skill level that will transfer to Ice Trail and place the Team Adidas runner a contender for top-10. A recent 11th place at the Maxi Race in Annecy and top-10 at Mont-Blanc 80km shows he has great form. However, Aurelien may only race the VK? (tbc)

Ones to watch:

Marc Casal Mir – 21st at Transvulcania La Palma 2014.

Scott Hawker – 7th at Lavaredo Ultra Trail just 7-days ago.

Jordi Bes Ginesta – 17th at Transvulcania La Palma 2014.

 

Ladies

Emelie Forsberg Ice-Trail Tarentaise ©iancorless.com

Emelie Forsberg Ice-Trail Tarentaise ©iancorless.com

I don’t wish to put a down on the ladies race but I just don’t see anyone coming close to Emelie Forsberg if she has anything like the form she displayed at the Skyrunning World Championships. Emelie showed everyone a clean pair of ‘Sense’ last year and dominated the ladies race by almost 1-hour. Her performance was so strong that the ever smiley and happy Swede ‘chicked’ most of the men’s field. Emelie is outright winner barring an accident and top-10 contender overall ((maybe even top-5!)

Maud Gobert is racing less these days, however, when she races she personifies that class is permanent as shown in Chamonix 7-days ago with another top quality performance. Maud may have all the potential to take either podium slot.

Anna-Lise Rousset placed 5th at Transvulcania La Palma in 2014 and will be looking to repeat that performance in Val d’Isère. In reality, 2nd or 3rd on the podium will be the target. Ice Trail will be a new challenge though; one can’t look at the distance of 65km and think it will be easy. It’s a whole new ball game.

Alesandra Carlini

Alesandra Carlini

Alessandra Carlini has moved up a level recently and although I see her offering no contest to Emelie, she will be in the mix fighting for the podium and most definitely a top-5 possibility. In 2014, Alessandra placed 2nd at MSIG Sai Kung 50 and 10th at Transvulcania La Palma.

Laia Andreu Trias has only two significant results that I am aware of and both of those come from Cavalls del Vent: 6th in 2012 and 3rd in 2013.

Ones to watch:

Judit Lamas Borraz

Alexis Traub

Info

2013 results Top-10 Men

  1. Jornet 7:35:32
  2. d’haene 7:40:13
  3. Reiter 8:12:38

2013 results Top-10 Ladies

  1. Forsberg 9:11:11
  2. Dewalle 10:08:58
  3. Canepa 10:31:59

Skyrunning website HERE

Ice Trail Tarentaise website HERE

Ice Trail Tarentaise, video Aiguille Pers

If you wondered what it was like at the Ice Trail Tarentaise, this short video will give you a no fills insight to the Aiguille Pers summit.

CE TRAIL Tarentaise – Val d’Isère 2013 – Aiguille Pers
BAB (Bout à Bout)
filmé par: Ludovic Rolandone
postproduction Alex Covaci
Une Production Radio-TV Val d’Isère
©Tous droits réservés

YouTube HERE

Ice Trail Tarentaise Race Report

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Kilian Jornet and Emelie Forsberg excel at the ISF Skyrunning Ice Trail Tarentaise. With over 60 km’s above 2000m altitude and with a highest point of 3653m at ‘Grande Motte’ this is a race not to be taken lightly. Memories of the Tour de France flood into my mind when I discuss this region, however, other than the highest paved mountain pass at the ‘Col de L’Iseran’ at 2770m, no bicycles will be seen.

The Tarentaise valley and the Ice Trail Tarentaise in many respects personify what Kilian Jornet has been pursuing for years, the term ‘Alpinism’ is often perceived as climbing but it is so much more. Traversing glaciers, ascending and descending summits such as ‘Aiguille Pers’ at 3386 m, participants in the 2013 Ice Trail Tarentaise will no doubt had a full appreciation of what Kilian and others like him strive for when they coin the term, Skyrunning. You see, Skyrunning is Alpinism but without the clutter, it’s about being light and moving fast.

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Val D’Isère, 0400 on Sunday 14th July, 600+ runners departed for one of the most challenging races they would ever experience. With a total distance of 65km’s, 5000m+  positive gain and over 60% of the course in snow, the race would ultimately be the most challenging Skyrunning race ever encountered by all the participants.

The 2012 race winner, Francois D’Haene dictated the early pace with Rickey Gates and Kilian Jornet. At Tignes after following a river trail and an early climb the field was already spreading out. Emelie Forsberg had opened a gap on the female competition and was already pulling away.

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Darkness was now being replaced by the arrival of a new day and blue skies, temperatures started to rise but temperatures did drop to as low as -3deg on the first big challenge of the day, the Grande Motte at 3653m, this would see participants climb 1800m  in under10km. The ascent included traversing a glacier (YakTrax compulsory) and then a 70deg climb that included sections of Via Ferrata. At the summit, km17, Kilian, Francois and Rickey continued to establish a lead over a chasing Fulvio Dapit and Philipp Reiter.

Christel Dewalle and Ronda dels Cims winner, Francesca Canepa pursued Emelie Forsberg but the pattern was set for the whole race. Emelie was in her element, and although she said post race that it was the hardest race she had ever done, she also admitted that she loved every step of it, ‘this is pure Skyrunning, it is what I love about this sport, the ability to combine mountains, snow, running and ice to combine together in one of the most challenging sports’.

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The descent from Col Fours at 2976m to Pont Neige at 2530m now had Francois D’Haene and Kilian Jornet establishing a lead over the rest of the field that would not be relinquished. A small section of road and a right turn at Cascade ultimately proved to be one of the hardest sections of the course. Climbing from 2700m to the Col Pers at 3009m and then Pointe Pers 3386m resulted in many runners failing to meet cut-off times or drop with fatigue at Cascade. Marcus Warner from Ultra168 said, ‘that broke peoples spirits, I have buried the feeling it created; I had to look inside and decide if I wanted to put myself through it. However, I found that inner strength and moved on. The terrain was hard pack snow on the north side to waist deep soft snow. It sucked life from within me, the final 300m was a treadmill of slate and scree, I felt I was going nowhere’.

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At the iconic Col de L’Iseran, the highest road in Europe the final challenge awaited, the 300m ascent to the Tunnel Lessieres at km56. It was in the final stages of this climb on the tough and technical rock section that Kilian moved ahead of Francois and pulled away to take another incredible win. Emelie Forsberg looked relaxed and comfortable, her lead was convincing and a victory was guaranteed. Christel and Francesca continued to hold second and third place and this format would not change to the finish line.

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The 2013 ISF Skyrunning Ice Trail Tarentaise will be remembered in years to come as an iconic day in Skyrunning history. Along with Zegama-Aizkorri, Trofeo Kima and Canazei in the Dolomites, the ‘ITT’ will become a flagship event. It will test elites and non-elite runners to the limit and as many said post race, ‘km for km, that is the hardest race I have ever done’

RACE PHOTOGRAPHY HERE

RACE START IMAGES HERE

PRE RACE IMAGES HERE

PRE RACE INTERVIEW with EMELIE FORSBERG HERE

Men:

  1. Kilian Jornet (Salomon) 07:35:32 new course record
  2. Francois D’Haene (Salomon) 07:40:13
  3. Philipp Reiter (Salomon) 08:12:38

Ladies:

  1. Emelie Forsberg (Salomon) 09:11:11 new course record (and 10th overall)
  2. Christel Dewalle (Terre de Running) 10:08:58
  3. Francesca Canepa (Team Montura/Vibram) 10:31:59

Links:

FULL RESULTS HERE

Skyrunning HERE

Ice Trail Tarentaise HERE