TROFEO KIMA 2016 Race Summary and Images – Skyrunner® Extreme Series

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You cannot look at Trofeo Kima with the eyes of a pure runner; It’s beyond running! For over twenty years, ‘Kima’ as it is affectionately known, has blown the minds and the legs of all those lucky enough to toe the line.

The race is arguably the pinnacle of the Skyrunning calendar and as such it has gained a reputation as one of the most demanding and challenging races in the world. At 52km in length the distance is not intimidating, however, 8,400m of ascent and descent put the race in perspective.

Passing over seven passes of the Sentiero Roma, a well-known GR route, the race in its current form is the brainchild of the International Skyrunning Federation president, Marino Giacometti. So tough is Kima that it has a capped field of just 250 participants and the race is held every other year to add to its allure.  This is a race that one aspires too; you need to earn a place on the entry line. The challenge comes no greater. This is confirmed in the words of the previous course record holder, Kilian Jornet:

‘Picture a mountain terrain that has no paths, amidst glaciers; it is all crests, rocks, stretches of via Ferrata and all over a course that stretches 52-km. Kima is not athletics, it is mountaineering; pure Skyrunning!’

Kima takes place on mountain paths that are unmarked. Simple flickers of colour show the way through rock, granite, snow and ice. Sections of the course are so severe that fixed ropes and chains provide the only secure way to traverse vertical walls of rock or exposed ledges. Needless to say, a head for heights, an ability to look after oneself and excellent fitness make each runner’s journey on the Sentiero Roma one that they will never forget. Scaling incredible terrain on foot and at times by hand, participants will reach a high point of 2,950m at Cameraccio Pass. It is the challenging terrain that truly sets the race apart, as Giacometti describes: ‘Kima crosses the group of technical mountains in the area and passes through all of the seven refuges situated on the route. It’s a very technical race and ultimately it has become a beacon of Skyrunning’

‘Kima’ was the nickname of Pierangelo Marchetti, who with friends founded the first helicopter equipe in Italy. The mountains were Perangelo’s life; he loved them and he embraced them. Unfortunately, on July 8th 1994, while attending a rescue mission via helicopter, Pierangelo’s life was taken. Trofeo Kima was created in his memory to ensure his love and dreams of the mountains would live on.

During the 20-year history, Kima has seen the best in the world perform over this challenging course. Now part of the Skyrunner® Extreme Series, Kima is one of three ‘extreme’ races that provides points for an overall Sky Extreme Series title where two out of three races must be completed. The first race in the series was Tromso SkyRace, the second Trofeo Kima and the third being the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline in Scotland.

For many, this iconic Skyrunning and mountain running race is still unknown. It’s like a precious jewel, hidden away for fear of someone stealing it. With each edition, one link in the securing chain is removed and the extreme beauty of Kima is being revealed to an audience of adrenaline junkies. Kima is not for everyone, but if you have the experience and the courage, the Sentiero Roma rewards each who ventures on to its tough and technical terrain.

This year, Tom Owens was riding high after a string of successful results and many had tipped him as the pre-race favourite. However, a day of intense heat and clear skies most definitely played with the rule book throwing several curve balls.

In the ladies’ race, the 2016 Kima will no doubt be remembered as the return to top level racing for Emelie Forsberg. Recent surgery on her knee after an ‘acl’ injury had deprived Emelie (and us) of her presence in a race. A couple of forays into shorter races had tested her fitness and recovery but could Emelie stand 7+ hours on ‘this’ course.

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Early action came from Alexis Sevennec and Leo Viret who dictated the pace up the very long first climb pursued by Marco De Gasperi and Nepalese runner, Bhim Gurung.

©iancorless.com_TrofeoKima2016-0996Constantly fighting the terrain and each other, Sevennec and Viret lead the race for much of the way with Gurung moving up into 3rd place after Qualido. In the latter stages of the race though, De Gasperi made a move as Sevennec and Viret faded. Gurung joined the Italian Skyrunning legend and in the closing stages the two dueled to the line… in the closing stages it was Gurung who made the break crossing the line to a stunning victory and new course record time of 6:10:44. De Gasperi crossed the line also under the old course record of Kilian Jornet a spent force. He dropped to the ground exhausted from the effort and heat. Vireo closed 3rd and Sevennec smiled his way across the line in 4th. Tom Owens finished 5th after a tough and hard day in the office – his first at Tromso and 5th here still securing his place at the top of the Sky Extreme Series.

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The ladies race was all about come back girl Emelie Forsberg and she didn’t disappoint. Leading the race from beginning to end, Emelie smiled her way to the line, pretty in pink! Yes, this was one of those great comebacks that even Emelie questioned, “I planned to take it easy early on and not push too hard. My operation removed some of my hamstring and this has made my leg weaker so I need to be careful. But everything felt good today and I am so happy, this was not about winning a race, although that is great! It was about coming back with no problems and feeling good.”

©iancorless.com_TrofeoKima2016-2490Emelie finished in 7:49:06 outside Nuria Picas’s course record time of 7:36:21. Ruth Croft from New Zealand pursued Emelie all day and had a great run often hovering around 10-minutes behind.

©iancorless.com_TrofeoKima2016-2542At the line the gap was 17+ minutes and Ruth confirmed that her skills on such technical terrain are not good enough in comparison to Emelie. Kima legend and previous winner of the race, Emanuela Brizio upheld her incredible history with this race crossing the line in 3rd, 8:21:42.

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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.

iancorless.com is the official photographer and media partner for the Skyrunner® World Series Follow on:

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Trofeo Kima is featured in my new book, RUNNING BEYOND (information here)

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RACE IMAGES ©iancorless.com / SWS

Episode 111 – Chris Vargo, Alicia Shay and Ida Nilsson – a Transvulcania Special

A_GRAVATAR

This is Episode 111 of Talk Ultra and it’s all about Transvulcania. We speak with Chris Vargo who placed 5th, Alicia Shay who placed 4th and Ida Nilsson who blasted around the course to take the ladies victory. We have the news, a chat with Holly Rush and Speedgoat Karl is back

01:03:00 Start

80 days to the AT for Karl

00:15:32 NEWS

Transvulcania

Men

  1. Luis Alberto Hernando  – 7h04’44”
  2. Nicolas Martin – 7h10’40”
  3. Sage Canaday – 7h14’16”
  4. Andy Symonds – 7h25’04”
  5. Chris Vargo – 7h26’53”

Women

  1. Ida Nilsson – 8h14’18”
  2. Anne-Lise Rousset – 8h31’53”
  3. Ruth Croft – 8h33’32”
  4. Alicia Shay – 8h49’46”
  5. Hillary Allen – 8h54’57”

00:36:54 INTERVIEW Chris Vargo and Alicia Shay

Canyons 100k

Men

  1. Paddy O’Leary 9:35
  2. Bob Shebest 10:07
  3. Lon Freeman 10:51

Women

  1. Magdalena Boulet 10:58
  2. Erika Lindland 12:22
  3. Annie Rutledge 12:24

Miwok 100k

Men

  1. Cody Reed 9:04
  2. Chiara Omine 9:13
  3. Franz Van Der Groen 9:16

Women

  1. Aliza Lapierre 10:25
  2. Bree Lambert 10:55
  3. Katie Arnold 11:16

NDW 50

No full results online yet but Holly Rush blasted around the ladies course to smash the CR and finish 4th overall (time 7:11) and Neil Kirby 6:57 for the men’s win

01:40:17 INTERVIEW Holly Rush

DOUBLE BOB GRAHAM ROUND

Nicky Spinks has done it only the 2nd person and 1st lady to complete a double BGR in 45:30

02:28:38 INTERVIEW with Ida Nilsson

UP & COMING RACES

Australia

New South Wales

The North Face 100 Australia | 100 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

The North Face 50 Australia | 50 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Queensland

Glasshouse 50 | 50 kilometers | May 15, 2016 | website

Glasshouse 80 | 80 kilometers | May 15, 2016 | website

The Great Wheelbarrow Race – Mareeba to Dimbulah | 104 kilometers | May 13, 2016 | website

Victoria

Ultra Marathon 60K | 60 kilometers | May 15, 2016 | website

Belgium

Wallonia

Les Bières du Diable | 100 kilometers | May 15, 2016 | website

Bhutan

The Last Secret | 200 kilometers | May 27, 2016 | website

Canada

British Columbia

100K | 100 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

50K | 50 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

50 Miles | 50 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

Ontario

Seaton Trail 50 km Trail | 50 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Chile

Atacama Xtreme 100 Miles | 100 miles | May 20, 2016 | website

Atacama Xtreme 50 km | 50 kilometers | May 20, 2016 | website

Atacama Xtreme 50 Miles | 50 miles | May 20, 2016 | website

China

Trail de la Grande Muraille de Chine | 73 kilometers | May 13, 2016 | website

Cyprus

Lionheart Run | 80 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Czech Republic

M.E.T.R. 60km | 60 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Finland

Oulu

NUTS Karhunkierros Trail Ultra – 160 km | 160 kilometers | May 27, 2016 | website

France

Ain

La Promenade du Bûcheron | 70 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Alpes-de-Haute-Provence

Trail de Haute Provence – Ultra | 72 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Aude

Challenge Cathare | 95 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Course des Seigneurs | 50 kilometers | May 15, 2016 | website

Cantal

La Pastourelle – Le Grand Cirque | 53 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Côtes-d’Armor

58 km | 58 kilometers | May 15, 2016 | website

Haute-Savoie

L’intégrale | 77 kilometers | May 15, 2016 | website

Trail des Allobroges | 64 kilometers | May 15, 2016 | website

Haute-Vienne

Le Grand Trail du Limousin | 58 kilometers | May 15, 2016 | website

Haut-Rhin

Trail des Marcaires | 53 kilometers | May 22, 2016 | website

Hérault

Hérault Trail | 73 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Ultra Draille | 120 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Isère

Chartreuse Maratour | 50 kilometers | May 16, 2016 | website

Lozère

Ultra Lozère | 108 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Savoie

Grand Raid 73 | 73 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Var

12,5 km | 125 kilometers | May 15, 2016 | website

Yonne

Oxfam Trailwalker France | 100 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Yvelines

Trail des Cerfs – 50 km | 50 kilometers | May 22, 2016 | website

Germany

Hesse

WiBoLT | 320 kilometers | May 25, 2016 | website

North Rhine-Westphalia

TorTour de Ruhr | 230 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Rhineland-Palatinate

Keufelskopf Ultra-Trail | 85 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Saar-Hunsrück-Supertrail | 128 kilometers | May 15, 2016 | website

Thuringia

GutsMuths-Rennsteiglauf Super Marathon | 72 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Ghana

Runathlon 50km Ultramarathon | 50 kilometers | May 25, 2016 | website

Greece

Heroes Ultra | 154 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Guernsey

Guernsey Ultra | 36 miles | May 22, 2016 | website

Israel

Mountain to Valley Relay | 215 kilometers | May 18, 2016 | website

Italy

Emilia-Romagna

Nove Colli Running | 202 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Liguria

Gran Trail Rensen | 62 kilometers | May 22, 2016 | website

Veneto

Gran Raid delle Prealpi Trevigiane | 72 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Japan

100 km | 100 kilometers | May 22, 2016 | website

71 km | 71 kilometers | May 22, 2016 | website

Korea

50k | 50 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Mayotte

Mahoraid | 70 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Netherlands

Drenthe

UltraRun van Gieten 50 kilometer | 50 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

New Caledonia

Ultratrail des Cagous | 80 kilometers | May 15, 2016 | website

Ultratrail des Cagous | 80 kilometers | May 15, 2016 | website

Norway

80 km | 80 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Philippines

Hardcore Hundred Miles | 100 miles | May 20, 2016 | website

Portugal

Running Challenge Linhas de Torres | 100 kilometers | May 15, 2016 | website

Trans 333 | 333 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Trans 333 Non Stop | 333 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Ultra Trail de São Mamede | 100 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Romania

Transylvania 100k | 100 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Transylvania 50k | 50 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Slovenia

110 km | 110 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

50 km | 50 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Spain

Balearic Islands

Trail Menorca Cami de Cavalls | 185 kilometers | May 20, 2016 | website

Trail Menorca Cami de Cavalls Costa Nord | 100 kilometers | May 20, 2016 | website

Trail Menorca Cami de Cavalls Costa Sud | 85 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Principality of Asturias

Ultra Trail Picos de Europa 55 km | 55 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Switzerland

Berne

Bielersee Ultra-Marathon | 50 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Bielersee XXL 100 Meilen | 100 miles | May 13, 2016 | website

Turkey

Cekmekoy 60K Ultramarathon | 60 kilometers | May 15, 2016 | website

United Kingdom

Cumbria

Keswick Mountain Festival Ultra Trail Marathon | 50 kilometers | May 22, 2016 | website

Old County Tops Fell Race | 37 miles | May 21, 2016 | website

Devon

Forces March | 131 miles | May 25, 2016 | website

Perth and Kinross

110 Mile Ultra | 110 miles | May 13, 2016 | website

55 Mile Ultra | 55 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

Shropshire

Apocalypse 100 | 100 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

Apocalypse 50 | 50 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

Somerset

Westcountry Ultra 100 Miler | 100 miles | May 21, 2016 | website

Westcountry Ultra Flat 50 miler | 50 miles | May 21, 2016 | website

Westcountry Ultra Hilly 50 miler | 50 miles | May 21, 2016 | website

Surrey

North Downs Way 50 | 50 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

Wiltshire

Marlborough Downs Challenge – 33 mile | 33 miles | May 15, 2016 | website

Wessex Ridgeway Relay | 100 kilometers | May 22, 2016 | website

Worcestershire

Severn Challenge | 214 miles | May 26, 2016 | website

Severn Plod Ultra | 45 miles | May 27, 2016 | website

USA

Arizona

Adrenaline 65K Night Run | 65 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Grand Canyon 100 Mile | 100 miles | May 21, 2016 | website

Grand Canyon 50K | 50 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Grand Canyon 50 Mile | 50 miles | May 21, 2016 | website

California

100 Miler | 100 miles | May 13, 2016 | website

50K Ultra | 50 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

60 Miler | 60 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

Cinderella Trail Run 50 km (May) | 50 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Gold Rush 50K | 50 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

Me-Ow Quads | 104 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

Me-Ow Siamese | 42 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

Ohlone Wilderness 50K Trail Run | 50 kilometers | May 22, 2016 | website

PCT50 Trail Run | 50 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

Quicksilver 100K Endurance Run | 100 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

Quicksilver 50K Endurance Run | 50 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Colorado

135 km | 135 kilometers | May 13, 2016 | website

Quad Rock 50 | 50 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

The Divide 135 Ultra | 135 miles | May 13, 2016 | website

Connecticut

Trail 2 Trail Series Kettletown Park 50K | 50 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Florida

Keys 100 Mile | 100 miles | May 21, 2016 | website

Keys 50K Race | 50 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Keys 50 Mile Race | 50 miles | May 21, 2016 | website

Georgia

Cruel Jewel 100 | 100 miles | May 13, 2016 | website

Cruel Jewel 50 Mile Race | 50 miles | May 13, 2016 | website

Peach State 300 | 300 miles | May 25, 2016 | website

Run for the Heroes – 260 Mile Run Across Georgia | 260 miles | May 25, 2016 | website

Indiana

DWD Gnaw Bone 50K | 50 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

DWD Gnaw Bone 50M | 50 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

Kansas

Rock On! Lake Perry 50K | 50 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Massachusetts

Ragnar Relay Cape Cod | 186 miles | May 13, 2016 | website

Minnesota

Spring Superior Trail 50 k | 50 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

We Walk! 50 km | 50 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Missouri

Berryman 50 Miles | 50 miles | May 21, 2016 | website

Nevada

Silver State 50K | 50 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Silver State 50-Miler | 50 miles | May 21, 2016 | website

Trails of Fury 50K | 50 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

New Hampshire

Manchester 2 Monadnock Ultramarathon | 55 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

New Jersey

Mayapple 100K Trail Run | 100 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Mayapple 50k Trail Run | 50 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

New Mexico

Jemez Mountain Trail Runs 50K | 50 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Jemez Mountain Trail Runs 50-Mile | 50 miles | May 21, 2016 | website

North Carolina

Gamelands Ultra 100K | 100 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Gamelands Ultra 50K | 50 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Ohio

Playin’ Possum 50k | 50 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Tie Dye 32 Miler | 32 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

Oregon

McDonald Forest 50K Trail Run | 50 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Pennsylvania

50K | 50 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

50K | 50 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

50-Mile | 50 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

50 Mile Relay | 50 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

Dawn to Dusk to Dawn 50K Ultra | 50 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Dirty German 50K | 50 kilometers | May 15, 2016 | website

Dirty German 50 Miles | 50 miles | May 15, 2016 | website

South Carolina

Family Tree 100 Relay | 100 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Forest Freak 50k | 50 kilometers | May 21, 2016 | website

Knock on Wood 100 Mile | 100 miles | May 21, 2016 | website

Tennessee

Ragnar Relay Tennessee | 196 miles | May 13, 2016 | website

Thunder Rock 100 Mile Trail Race | 100 miles | May 20, 2016 | website

Utah

Red Rock Relay Moab Edition | 63 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

Vermont

100 Miles | 100 miles | May 21, 2016 | website

200 Miles | 200 miles | May 19, 2016 | website

50 miles | 50 miles | May 21, 2016 | website

Virginia

Massanutten Mountain Trails 100 Mile Run | 100 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

Washington

Pigtails 150 Mile Challenge | 150 miles | May 27, 2016 | website

Pigtails 200 Mile Challenge | 200 miles | May 26, 2016 | website

Sun Mountain 50K | 50 kilometers | May 22, 2016 | website

Sun Mountain 50M | 50 miles | May 22, 2016 | website

Wisconsin

Ice Age Trail 50K | 50 kilometers | May 14, 2016 | website

Ice Age Trail 50M | 50 miles | May 14, 2016 | website

03:50:55 CLOSE

 

03:01:24

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Transvulcania Ultramarathon 2016 – Skyrunner® World Series

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The glowing Fuencalientie Lighthouse once again provided a stunning back drop to the start of the 2016 Transvulcania Ultramarathon, the first Ultra race in the 2016 Skyrunner® World Series.

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The majestic and beautiful trails of ‘La Isla Bonita’ provided a stunning but hard start of the race as 1000 plus runners navigated the wide start to funnel into single-track with black lava sand underfoot causing no end of traction problems.

It was a fast start, it always is and as the runners forged ahead looking of clear trail, it was the village of Los Canarios were hundreds of villagers assembled before a clear glimpse of who the main protagonists where?

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Sage Canaday as per usual, looked to gain an early lead  and buffer lead over Luis Alberto Hernando – his main rival for the top slot on the podium. A pattern was forming but it was still early days in such a long race and the heat and sun had yet to make an appearance. In the ladies race Ida Nilsson started to lay the ground work for what would result in a dominating performance.

Running out of Los Canarios, the trails are runnable and fast, weaving in and out of lush green vegetation, space finally opens up and the soft black sand returns making progress hard. At times it can be a little like running on the spot, one step forward and two steps back.

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The Route of the Volcanoes were bathed in early morning sun and suddenly the island came to life with the distant islands on Tenerife and La Gomera breaking through the low cloud.

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Sage Canaday continued to forge ahead at the from of the race, the pace was high but it was clear that this was not going to be an easy day on the trails. Chasing behind Luis Alberto Hernando, Nico Martin, Andy Symonds, Ricky Lightfoot and others battled the terrain and in and amongst the lead men, Ida Nilsson was making her presence felt leading the ladies race.

Reaching the top of the volcano section, finally some fast running to El Pilar, a key stage of the course with almost one third of the race covered. It’s the first major feed station and a place full of activity as thousands of fans assemble to cheer on the runners. It also provides a very clear opportunity to see each and every runner. Sage was looking good, as was Nico Martin but Luis Alberto was just biding his time. Ida Nilsson was almost in her own race but Ruth Croft and Ann Lise Rousset. Pre race favourites Anna Frost and Mira Rai were back in 6th and 7th and roughly stayed in these places for the whole race.

Leaving El Pilar a section of good running allows the pure runners to open their stride and make time on their rivals. It doesn’t last long though, it’s soon back to hands-on-knees euro grunt as arguably the runners enter the most stunning sections of the whole house that leads to Reventon and beyond.

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Pine needles cover the floor provide a lush carpet in-between the sharp and aggressive rocks. The sun breaks through the tress providing a stunning array of orange light that looks like golden fingers. The trails now weave left and right, up and down and to the left, Tazacorte can be seen off into the distance nestled next to the sea. the views are incredible.

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Sage Canaday continued to push ahead but Luis Alberto was also looking good and had the American in sight -it was just a matter of time! It was all to play for but the harder sections and technical running around the Caldera were looming. One plus side as the runners enter the Caldera is that the bulk of the climbing is now done, what followed was a series of rollercoaster ups and downs of at times technical rock.

Ida Nilsson had used her speed to good use to open up a huge gap, Ann Lise Rousset was chasing as was Ruth Croft but barring an accident or a lack of energy, Nilsson looked set for victory!

As the observatories approached it was clear to see that we had a race on our hands, Sage Canaday was holding his own against Luis Alberto and Nico Martin was not far behind. In the ladies race, Ida Nilsson looked just too strong – victory was on the cards!

Dropping 2400+m in 18km requires legs and nerves of steel. Believe me, it’s one hell of a ride. The early sections are open and the heat hits hard. Tree cover finally arrives and underfoot the single-track changes from dusty sand perpetuated with rocks to sand trail covered with a blanket of pine needles. The pine needles are difficult as it’s just like running on slippery grass.

Once again the trails opened up and then sections of technical rock slow the runners progress before they reach the road and the cafe at El Time. Luis Alberto had extended his lead and as he ran down the steep tarmac roads that lead to the zig-zag technical trails that lead to Tazacorte port, the writing was already on the wall for victory.

Nico Martin had moved into 2nd and was pushing hard to gain an advantage over Sage but it would require an all out effort and some serious risk taking from sage to pull back any time. The only possible scenario to pull back and gain time would come at Tazacorte and the tough and relentless climb to the finish on Los Llanos.

In the ladies race, Ida held on well and although anything could happen in the final 10km it was looking good for victory.

The heat and crowds welcomed the runners in Tazacorte and just when they thought the race was all over, a run along the beach front and a technical run up a gully were only just appetisers before the final climb to the finish line.

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The crowds had been assembled hours, the music had been blurting away and ‘Depa’ the mc for the race and been whipping the crowds into a frenzy. Suddenly the large screens showed Luis Alberto entering the final street sections, head down and pushing hard. In the finish are his wife waited with his new born baby!

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It was victory for Luis Alberto Hernando in a time of 07:04:44, Nico Martin ran a great run for 2nd place and Sage Canaday placed 3rd in times of 7:10:40 and 7:14:16.

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Ida Nilsson won the ladies race in 8:14:18 followed by Ann Lise Rousset 8:31:53 and Ruth Croft placed 3rd in 8:33:32.

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Transvulcania Ultramarathon never disappoints and I’ve said it before and I will say it again, it is arguably one of the greatest courses and finish lines out there. Add to that stunning organisation, wonderful support and a passionate island who gets behind the race, there is no mistaking why Transvulcania has become THE must race to do.

Results:

  1. Luis Alberto Hernando 7:04:44
  2. Nicolas Martin 7:10:40
  3. Sage Canaday 7:14:16
  4. Andy Symonds 7:25:04
  5. Chris Vargo 7:26:53

 

  1. Ida Nilsson 8:14:18
  2. Anne Lise Rousset 8:31:53
  3. Ruth Croft 8:33:32
  4. Alicia Shay 8:49:46
  5. Hillary Allen 8:54:57

*******

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The 2016 Skyrunner® World Series is brought to you with a new management company, Geneva based SkyMan SA

SkyMan SA  is pleased to present a new Main Partner, Migu Xempower, a Chinese exercise and health management platform which also counts a rich experience in organising marathons, city and mountain races for millions of runners.

The well-established, Sky, Ultra and Vertical format is joined by the Extreme Series presented by Alpina Watches, which more than ever expresses the true spirit of skyrunning defined not only by distance, but vertical climb and technical difficulty.

Skyrunner® World Series is supported by Migu Xempower, Alpina Watches, Compressport, Salomon and Scott Sports.

iancorless.com is the official photographer and media partner for the Skyrunner® World Series Follow on:

Follow the Skyrunner® World Series on social media platforms

Elisabet Barnes – Marathon des Sables Pre-Race Interview #MDS2016

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Elisabet Barnes dominated the 2015 Marathon des Sables by winning every stage of the race against a high quality field of competitors. What followed was a series of  races and victories – a win and course record at Trail Menorca and victory (and everyday stage wins) at Oman Desert Marathon.

2016 kicked off with a multi-day training camp (here) and in February, Elisabet placed 2nd at Costa Rica’s The Coastal Challenge.

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I caught up with Elisabet just two days before she flies out to Morocco to discuss how she feels, how 2016 will be different to 2015 and how life gets in the way of ‘just’ training.

You can listen and download the interview HERE

Or please click play on the audio file below

You can read a full and in-depth preview of the 2016 race HERE

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Transgrancanaria 2016 – Race Summary and Images

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The 2016 Transgrancanaria concluded in Maspalomas this morning at 5am after many runners battled through two nights and a long hot day to achieve the goal of completing the 125km journey from the north to the south of the island. It’s a race of many challenges!

The first big European race on the calendar, Transgrancanaria always attracts a high quality elite field and this year was no different. Starting at 2300 hours on Friday under warm skies, runners left the coastal town of Agaete and then weaved a route through many climbs and descents on what is a very demanding island to run on.

Aurelien Collet and Caroline Chaverot started the race like two possessed animals, constantly pushing and dictating the pace at the front. Chaverot was not a surprise after her string of recent high quality results and her 2nd place in Transgrancanaria last year. Collet though was a surprise!

As the runners ran into the night, Artenara was one of the first key aid stations and it soon became clear that the evening temperatures were causing many problems. A wind had started to increase off the coast and with it temperatures dropped.

By contrast, day temperatures were very warm and in the men’s race Roque Nublo became a significant point in the race as 2015 winner, Gediminas Grinius closed on Collet who had dictated the pace from the start.

Hermansen was also closing on Grinius and we knew the race was on!

In the ladies race, Chaverot’s lead was so huge it would have taken an injury for her to lose her lead, particularly after the withdrawal of Nuria Picas in the night with an injury. Emelie Lecomte, Andrea Huser and Uxue Fraile were pursuing but they were in a different race.

Hermansen finally took hold of the race in the section between Garanon and Pico de las Nieves when he overtook Collet. Grinius pursued but Hermann was committed to victory, something that he had prepared meticulously for having placed 2nd in 2015. He stopped the clock in 13:41:48 which established a new course record*

Pau Capell, winner of Transgrancanaria’s Advanced race in 2015, moved up a notch to finish on the podium jointly with Diego Pazos for third.

Caroline Chaverot was in a league of her own this year, committed, focused and dedicated, she was like a machine! Despite her huge lead, Chaverot continued to push the pace all the way to the finish and she also, like Hermansen, set a new course record and finished in the top-20 overall. Her closest rival was Andrea Huser who was almost 2 hours behind. Uxue Fraile finished 3rd.

*This years course has now been changed over the final 25km which is slightly less distance but more technical.

Results

  1. Didrik Hermansen 13:41:48
  2. Gediminas Grinius 13:45:08
  3. Pau Capell and Diego Pazos 14:11:02
  1. Caroline Chaverot 15:23:40
  2. Andrea Huser 17:21:43
  3. Uxue Fraile 17:28:05

Episode 106 – The Coastal Challenge 2016 Special #TCC2016

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This is Episode 106 of Talk Ultra. This show is all about The Coastal Challenge multi-day race in Costa Rica. We talk in-depth about Niandi’s experience and we bring you a selection of interviews to give you a feel for the race.

Book writing – RUNNING BEYOND will be released in November 2016 by Aurum Publishing.

00:01:04 Show Start

00:04:58 NEWS

ACONCAGUA – Fernanda Maciel established the first women’s FKT on , Aconcagua, earlier this month and I caught up with her immediately afterwards.

06:07:00 INTERVIEW

Fernanda said at the time should the weather be okay for a 2nd attempt that she would return. Return she did to established the first women’s FKT on the longer route. She traveled from the Horcones entrance gate to the summit and back – 60 kilometers and 4,100 meters of climb in 22:52. The mens record is almost have this time set by Karl Egloff who took the record from Kilian Jornet

ADDO ELEPHANT in South Africa

“As the only national Park in the world that offers visitors a chance to see the ‘Big Seven’ (elephant, lion, leopard, rhino, buffalo and the southern right whale and the great white shark in the marine area), we’re thrilled to be hosting the race again this year,” says Fayroush Ludick, SANParks Regional Communications Manager. “Because athletes will be running through areas of the park that they wouldn’t traditionally have access to, they will experience the park and its residents as never before.”

1 – Bennie Roux and Tom Adams finished together 21:45:08

2 – Chris Darke 22:24

3 – Ryno Griesel 24:55

1 – Linda Doke 29:25:34

2 – Kim Van Kets 33:34:12

ROCKY RACCOON 100 

1 – Ian Sharman 13:45, Paul Terranova 2nd and Will Swenson 3rd.

1 – Sabrina Little ran the 2nd fastest lasted time of 14:55, Amy Clark and Olga Buber were 2nd

and 3rd.

Notably, WSER legend Gordy Ainsleigh ran 28:31 to gain his WSER entry slot which many feel should have been guaranteed anyway!

TARAWERA

Jonas Buud won the race in 8:00 followed by David Bryne in 8:22 and Ryan Sandes 3rd in 8:30

Fiona Hayvice won the ladies race in 10:34 despite Ruby Muir leading for much of the race and then dropping with injury. Melissa Robertson and Fiona Eagles placed 2nd and 3rd with 10:56 and 11:24.

This weekend as the show comes out Transgrancanaria will be staring and it is quite a stacked field, certainly the first big race of 2016. Read the preview HERE

01:16:56 INTERVIEW THE TCC INTERVIEWS

Read the daily reports from Costa Rica HERE

The Coastal Challenge 2016 – The Full Story HERE

Images from The Coastal Challenge 2016 HERE

UP & COMING RACES

Australia

Australian Capital Territory

100km | 100 kilometers | March 05, 2016 | website

50 km | 50 kilometers | March 05, 2016 | website

New South Wales

Wild Women on Top Sydney Coastrek 100 km Team Challenge | 100 kilometers | March 04, 2016 | website

Wild Women on Top Sydney Coastrek 50 km Team Challenge Day: Party All Night | 50 kilometers | March 04, 2016 | website

Wild Women on Top Sydney Coastrek 50 km Team Challenge Day: Sun, Sand, Surf | 50 kilometers | March 04, 2016 | website

Belgium

Wallonia

55 km | 55 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

Canada

British Columbia

Dirty Duo 50 km Ultra | 50 kilometers | March 05, 2016 | website

Yukon

Likeys Ultra 6633 – 120 Mile | 120 miles | March 11, 2016 | website

Likeys Ultra 6633 – 350 Mile | 350 miles | March 11, 2016 | website

Costa Rica

51 km | 51 kilometers | March 05, 2016 | website

80 km | 80 kilometers | March 05, 2016 | website

France

Gard

Trail aux Etoiles | 58 kilometers | March 05, 2016 | website

Ultra du Bout du Cirque | 100 kilometers | March 05, 2016 | website

Ille-et-Vilaine

Endu’Rance Trail des Corsaires | 64 kilometers | March 05, 2016 | website

Pas-de-Calais

Le Poilu | 51 kilometers | March 13, 2016 | website

Puy-de-Dôme

Ultra trail de Vulcain | 81 kilometers | March 06, 2016 | website

Germany

Bavaria

Chiemsee-Ultramarathon März | 108 kilometers | March 05, 2016 | website

Hong-Kong

Translantau 100 km | 100 kilometers | March 11, 2016 | website

Translantau 50 km | 50 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

Hungary

BSI Lake Balaton Marathon+ Fonyód – Szigliget | 52 kilometers | March 18, 2016 | website

BSI Lake Balaton Supermarathon | 195 kilometers | March 17, 2016 | website

Italy

Umbria

Trasimeno Lake Ultramarathon | 58 kilometers | March 06, 2016 | website

Malaysia

KubUltra 60 | 60 kilometers | March 05, 2016 | website

TITI 200KM | 200 kilometers | March 18, 2016 | website

New Zealand

Old Ghost Ultra | 85 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

Te Houtaewa Challenge 60 km Open Ultra Marathon | 60 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

Waiheke Round Island 100 km Relay | 100 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

Philippines

All Women Ultra-Marathon | 50 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

Portugal

75 km | 75 kilometers | March 05, 2016 | website

South Africa

Om Die Dam 50 km Marathon | 50 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

Spain

Andalusia

150 km | 150 kilometers | March 04, 2016 | website

73 km | 73 kilometers | March 04, 2016 | website

Canary Islands

Transgrancanaria | 125 kilometers | March 04, 2016 | website

Transgrancanaria – Advanced | 84 kilometers | March 05, 2016 | website

Catalonia

Marxa dels Castells PLUS | 81 kilometers | March 13, 2016 | website

UT les Fonts | 120 kilometers | March 11, 2016 | website

UT les Fonts – Trail de les Fonts | 70 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

Valencian Community

84 km | 84 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

Sri Lanka

The Wild Elephant Trail | 210 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

Taiwan

100 km | 100 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

120 km | 120 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

60 km | 60 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

United Kingdom

Aberdeen City

D33 Ultra | 33 miles | March 12, 2016 | website

Bihar

Green Man Ultra | 44 miles | March 05, 2016 | website

Bradford

Haworth Hobble | 32 miles | March 12, 2016 | website

Dorset

Jurassic Coast Challenge | 78 miles | March 18, 2016 | website

Telford and Wrekin

Millennium Way | 38 miles | March 06, 2016 | website

Wiltshire

Imber Ultra Marathon | 33 miles | March 06, 2016 | website

USA

Alabama

Delano Park 50 Mile Solo | 50 miles | March 05, 2016 | website

Arizona

50K | 50 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

50M | 50 miles | March 12, 2016 | website

Old Pueblo 50 Miler | 50 miles | March 05, 2016 | website

Arkansas

3 days of Syllamo | 150 kilometers | March 18, 2016 | website

California

Deo 50K | 50 kilometers | March 13, 2016 | website

Marin Ultra Challenge 50K | 50 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

Marin Ultra Challenge 50 Mile | 50 miles | March 12, 2016 | website

Razorback 100K Endurance Race | 100 kilometers | March 06, 2016 | website

Razorback 100 Mile Endurance Race | 100 miles | March 06, 2016 | website

Razorback 50K Endurance Race | 50 kilometers | March 06, 2016 | website

Razorback 50 Mile Endurance Race | 50 miles | March 06, 2016 | website

Way Too Cool 50k | 50 kilometers | March 05, 2016 | website

Florida

100K Individual | 64 miles | March 13, 2016 | website

100K Team ( 3-4 Person Teams ) | 64 miles | March 13, 2016 | website

50K Individual | 32 miles | March 13, 2016 | website

DWD Green Swamp 50K | 50 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

DWD Green Swamp 50M | 50 miles | March 12, 2016 | website

Georgia

Bear Blaster 50k | 50 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

Kentucky

50 mile run | 50 miles | March 12, 2016 | website

60k | 60 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

Maryland

Seneca Creek Greenway Trail 50K | 50 kilometers | March 05, 2016 | website

Mississippi

Carl Touchstone Mississippi Trail 50 K | 50 kilometers | March 05, 2016 | website

Carl Touchstone Mississippi Trail 50 Mile | 50 miles | March 05, 2016 | website

Nevada

50K | 50 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

50M | 50 miles | March 12, 2016 | website

New Jersey

Lenape Trail Run | 34 miles | March 05, 2016 | website

North Carolina

Graveyard 100K Ultramarathon | 100 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

Graveyard 100 Mile Ultramarathon | 100 miles | March 12, 2016 | website

Long Course | 39 miles | March 12, 2016 | website

Ohio

Green Jewel 50K Fun Run | 50 kilometers | March 05, 2016 | website

Pennsylvania

Naked Bavarian 40M | 40 miles | March 06, 2016 | website

South Carolina

Foothills 50k | 50 kilometers | March 05, 2016 | website

Texas

50K | 50 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

Utah

Antelope Island 100 Mile | 100 miles | March 18, 2016 | website

Red Mountain 50K | 50 kilometers | March 05, 2016 | website

Vermont

PEAK Snowshoe 100 Mile Race | 100 miles | March 18, 2016 | website

Virginia

50K | 50 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

50 mile | 50 miles | March 12, 2016 | website

Thomas Jefferson 100k | 100 kilometers | March 12, 2016 | website

02:39:31 CLOSE

02:47:13

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

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

Website – talkultra.com

Enter The Coastal Challenge 2017 HERE

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The Coastal Challenge 2016 #TCC2016 – The Full Story

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The 2016 The Coastal Challenge was an incredible race, year-on-year the race grows and it is now one of the most respected multi-day races on the calendar. Following the classic multi-day format, runners travel in the south of Costa Rica on foot covering approximately 250km’s. Like races such as Marathon des Sables, the TCC is not self-sufficient. Don’t be fooled into thinking that this makes the races easier… read on!

View the full 2016 The Coastal Challenge image gallery HERE

TCC

“Hugging the coastline, the race travels in and out of the stunning Talamanca mountain range via dense forest trails, river crossings, waterfalls, long stretches of golden beaches backed by palm trees, dusty access roads, high ridges and open plains. At times technical, the combination of so many challenging elements is only intensified by the heat and high humidity that slowly but surely reduces even the strongest competitors to exhausted shells.”

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READ PART ONE – HERE

“Encapsulating the true sense of adventure, TCC requires a runner to be more than ‘just’ a runner. The race manages to make or break the most experienced competitor. Hopping from rock-to-rock, traversing a ridge, clambering over slimy boulders, swimming river crossings or running up and down single or double track, the race truly requires a rounded athlete to gain victory.”

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READ PART TWO – HERE

“The men’s race looked all set for a group run to the line with Don-Wauchope, Calisto and Martinez running side-by-side over all of the first 25km. Don-Wauchope safe in 1st place, Calisto safe in 2nd and Martinez no threat to the overall standings.”

 

“But where was Sa?”

 

“Sa was trailing a few minutes back. When the trio entered the river bed, Sa apparently flew past like a man possessed. It was a last ditch effort to secure 2nd place ahead of Callisto.”

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READ PART THREE – HERE

Demand for the 2017 The Coastal Challenge is already high with pre-requests and provisional bookings. Entries open in the UK and Europe this week via www.thecoastalchallenge.co.uk

Why not take part in our 2017 Multi-Day Training Camp which takes place in January each year? Details are available HERE

Interested in The Coastal Challenge 2017? Use the form below to secure one of the 100 available places

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Emelie Forsberg to race the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline

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It’s with great pleasure that I can announce that Salomon International Athlete, Skyrunning Ultra World Champion and recently crowned Skyrunning Ultra European Champion, Emelie Forsberg, will run the first edition of the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline (Scotland) in August 2015.

Speaking after the Dolomites VK and just before the Dolomites SkyRace (where she placed 4th) Emelie confirmed that she will travel to the UK on August 20th to participate in the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline.

Emelie in recent years has become one of the most important mountain/ skyrunners in the world after a string of high profile victories and podium performances in distances ranging from VK to 100-miles.

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Ironically, it all started in 2012 when Emelie raced The Three Peaks (UK) where she placed 2nd behind Sarah O’Neil. This race was quickly followed by running the iconic Zegama-Aizkorri where she placed 3rd after an incredible display of downhill running behind Oihana Kortazar and Nuria Picas. We knew then that Emelie was special!

Arguably, Emelie was unstoppable in 2013 and victory at Transvulcania Ultramarathon, Trans D’Havet and other high profile races only confirmed that a new multi-talented star was amongst us.

Known for her incredible strength, endurance and break neck downhill running, she has also become an inspiration to men and ladies all over the world by her infectious passion and love of life which she daily shares via social media. No matter how hard the race, no matter how tough the conditions are, no matter how bad she is feeling, Emelie is guaranteed to provide a smile.

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Emelie recently has an incredible start to 2015. A last minute decision to run Transvulcania Ultramarathon (off skis) was rewarding once again with a dominating victory. This was followed with a new course record and victory at the iconic Mount Marathon in Alaska.

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Just days after the Mount Marathon victory, Emelie raced the VK Face Bellevarde in Val d’Isere (as a loosen up) and then 2 days later won the 65km Ice Trail Tarentaise and was crowned Skyrunning European Champion 2015.

What a week! Mount Marathon and now European champion in ultra-distance Skyrunning! I’m really happy. I climbed summits and glacier and ran on beautiful trails. Thank you everyone standing along the course talking to me and cheering me on.”

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Never one to rest, 5 days after the ITT, Emelie ran the Dolomites VK and then placed 4th at the highly competitive Dolomites SkyRace just 2 days later.

“I need a little rest now but I am so looking forward to Scotland and this incredible course!”

Emelie’s presence in the UK is something that fans of mountain and trail running have wanted for some time, so, to finally have this come to fruition is extremely exciting. From day one my aim and desire with Skyrunning UK has been driven in providing UK runners challenging courses that would give them an insight into what is available in Europe. However, with careful planning and some great work with quality race directors, we are slowly but surely building a series of races that can offer a challenge to anyone! This was proven in 2014 when Stevie Kremer raced the Mourne Skyline MTR. Emelie’s presence in Scotland later this year is a dream come true but it’s only the beginning. I had a plan that in 3 years we would bring a host of world class talent to the UK to race and I can now see that coming to fruition, it’s a really exciting time!

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Shane Ohly form Ourea Events along with Gary Tompsett have worked tirelessly to put the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline race together and it hasn’t been without some raised eyebrows and concern (excellent article HERE). But the plan has been very clear from the start:

“We are not creating another mass participation fell or trail running event, but rather a world class Skyrunning course for experienced and competent participants. 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.”

On hearing that Emelie would run the inaugural Salomon Glen Coe Skyline, Shane was very clear in his thought process:

“It is an honor that Emelie has decided to race at the inaugural Salomon Glen Coe Skyline and I am delighted that this world class Skyrunning course we have conceived has attracted a Skyrunning World and European Champion.”

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Emelie will not have an easy race! Finlay Wild, Es Tressider, Jim Mann and Dragons Back Race 2015 ladies champion (also 2nd overall) Jasmine Paris will also run the race.

‘We 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,” said Ohly.

 

“I would love to see the same kind of community engagement and atmosphere at a UK SkyRace as I have personally experienced at European skyRaces like Zegama-Aizkorri. Certainly this is my goal for the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline and we will be working hard to achieve this.”

The Salomon Glen Coe Skyline™ follows in the finest tradition of the most prestigious Skyrunning races, fusing mountain running and alpinism in a pure test of speed, endurance and skill on an uncompromising, world-class course.

The Salomon Glen Coe Skyline™ will take place on Saturday 22nd August 2015 and will be part of the Skyrunner UK Series. The event is only suitable for highly experienced competitors and all aspirant entrants will be vetted for experience.

Entries are limited to 200 max. The current entry list is HERE.

Information

Skyrunning UK can be found at www.skyrunninguk.com

The Salomon Glen Coe Skyline can be found at www.glencoeskyline.com

Contacts

Ian Corless – iancorless@skyrunninguk.co.uk

Shane Ohly – shaneohly@oureaevents.com

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Elisabet Barnes and the Sunset Relay

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Sunset Relay (sunsetrelay.com) is an event organized by Garnier Ambre Solaire in partnership with Association of European Cancer Leagues (ECL). The purpose is to raise awareness of the dangers of the sun. As the name suggests it takes the form of a relay, in which participants race the sun for 96 hours / ~1300km. The line-up included top athletes, business people, bloggers, journalists and celebrities who would run, cycle, row, paddle or roller skate.

Staged in the mythical and beautiful Swedish Lapland during the midnight sun, three main sections forming a triangle constituted the course of this first edition: Luleå à Hemavan à Abisko à Luleå. I took part in the second section with six other trail runners (Olof Häggström, Sylvain Court, Jonathan Wyatt, Elina Usscher, Linus Holmsäter & Maud Gobert) and we were running the famous national trail Kungsleden (”King’s Trail”) northbound from Hemavan to Abisko. This trail is 430km long and offers a great variety of terrain, much of which is more technical than one might think for such a popular trail. In this part of Sweden there is still snow in June and with an exceptionally cold start to the summer it was too deep to run in places. We therefore had some last minute alterations to the route and a helicopter was on hand to help us get to the runnable sections.

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Kungsleden is an undulating path. Its highest point is the Tjäkta Pass at 1150 m above sea level. The ground is very varied including rock, trails in the woods with plenty of roots and stones, miles of narrow boards over swampy wetland, meadows, and stream crossings. Although challenging it made the journey on this trail interesting and varied. The views were simply stunning and with the midnight sun it was easy to lose track of time. Was it 2am or 12pm? It was impossible to say without a watch apart from the temperature being a bit cooler at night.

I thoroughly enjoyed the running on Kungsleden. Sweden is my home country and although I spent time in the north as a child skiing and walking in the mountains it was a long time ago. Travelling on this trail felt almost magical. I cherished this unique moment which seemed to encourage me to be present in the now, soaking up the beauty of the surroundings, listening to the roar of the water in the streams I passed and the birds singing in the trees. Occasionally I heard the sound of a branch cracking or leaves rattling on the ground as I disturbed some wildlife. I must admit that I was a bit worried about bears as I ran on the single track through those beautiful mountain birch woods by Abiskojaure Lake. However, it was probably very unlikely I would actually encounter any and all I saw were a few lemmings.

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It was a great privilege to get the opportunity to take part in this event. Aside from the experience of the trail running I met some wonderful people. I would love to go back for an ultra-trail event or maybe run Kungsleden in its entirety. It has been done before by at least a couple of Swedish runners and makes for a beautiful but demanding holiday…

For more information about Kungsleden, go to http://www.svenskaturistforeningen.se/en/Discover-Sweden/Facilities-and-activities/Lappland/kingstrail/

Videos from the event:

https://www.sunsetrelay.com/videos?filter=category&value=14

Photos:

https://instagram.com/sunsetrelay/

Marathon des Sables 2015 #MDS2015 – Race Images

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The 30th edition of the iconic Marathon des Sables is over! What a race… we all knew that race director, Patrick Bauer would create something special and he did not disappoint.

Tough stages and the longest days had runners tackling 92km’s, the longest stage ever in the 30 year history of the race.

Rachid El Morabity (20:21:39) won the men’s race once again in true style and Elisabet Barnes (26:42:13) showed pure class in winning every stage of the ladies race. A race summary will follow.

Below is a selected portfolio that encompasses the 30th edition of the race. A full image gallery will be uploaded to iancorless.phtoshelter.com in due course.

All images ©iancorless.com