Compressport Trail Menorca – Cami de Cavalls 2018 Race Summary

The Compressport Trail Menorca Cami de Cavalls is a series of races, five in total, that take a 360-degree journey around the stunning island of Menorca. The shortest distance 32km’s and the longest, 185km’s.  Rocks, technical trail, beautiful beaches, turquoise sea, lush green vegetation and coves that are hidden away that need to be discovered. The weekend of racing offers a simple concept, to provide runners of all ability an opportunity to see the best of what Menorca has to offer over. distances of 32km, 55km, 85km, 100km and 185km.

The TMCDC is the main event stating and concluding in Ciutadella in two waves, the first at 0830 and the second, for faster runners, at 1430.

Anything can happen in185km’s and the ladies’ race had its fair share of action and changes. Gemma Avelli was a clear favourite coming into the race as the 2017 champion. Despite cooler temperatures, less heat and no intense sun, things did not go well for the defending champion and shows forced to withdraw at 30km.

For the remainder of the day and into the night, Alice Modignani took the race by the scruff of the neck and dictated the pace ahead of Sasha Roig. The night took its toll and by dawn, Eva Orives had the lead. Tina Ameller also had passed Modignani and was now 15-minutes behind the leader. 

Timing her race to perfection, Ameller closed gap and in the final 20km and took the lead, no doubt local knowledge providing a great help. Orives finished 2nd over 30-minutes later and Modignani fought hard for the final podium place with just over. 1-minute to spare over. 4th place. 

Ameller at the finish gave her thoughts, “I didn’t expect it as last year I had to retire. The only thing I wanted to do was to finish it one way or another. I corrected my mistakes. I ran very slowly for the first 100 km, but in the end it’s about your level of endurance. At Cala en Bosc I took the lead, but I had to run. During the last kilometers people were really encouraging me. I’m absolutely elated and now I’m going to enjoy it.” 

Antoine Guillon was a firm favourite in the men’s race, he won last year, knows the island and 100-miles seems to cause this long-distance specialist little or no problems. He started the day relaxed hovering around 10th place. But after 20km’s he took the lead with. Gerard Morales and. The duo ran side-by-side for much of the first 100km. Pere Luis Garau like Guillon had started the day relaxed but finally moved to. 3rd in pursuit of the duo. 

Guillon finally made a move around the 115km mark, the pace too fast for Morales. Guillon pushed on, now Luis Garau and Morales were together, workings a team and the question was all about whether they could close the gap?

At 130km, the aid station Cala en Porter, confusion hit as Morales and Luis Garau arrived first. Unfortunately, Guillon had got lost and wasted a valuable 35-minutes. Showing pure class, Guillon closed the gap to the duo and then pushed ahead, no doubt frustrated by his error. Luis Garau matched the Frenchman and Morales slowly slipped back to 3rd place. 

The duo pushed at the front and it is unclear if Guillon could not drop Luis Garau or if they decided to finish together? Finish together they did, hand-in-hand, and just 3-minutes off Guillon’s 2016 course record time. It was great moment for Luis Garau, you could see his emotion on the finish line and Guillon gave him respect, “Pere Luís is very strong and I’m happy to have reached the finish line alongside him. I’ll return to Menorca next year to try to get under 19 hours, as I have realised that it’s possible for me to do that”.

Morales finished 3rd just over 10-minutes later looking very tired, a job well done achieving the final podium place.

Men’s Result

  1. Pere Luis Garau and Antoine Guillon 19:21:21
  2. Gerard (Blacky) Morales19:32:01
  3. Marc Sole 20:58:27
  4. Carlos Herrero 21:23:44

Full results HERE

Women’s Results  

  1. Tina Ameller. 26:56:53
  2. Eva Orives 27:31:09
  3. Alice Modignani 28:38:27
  4. Maria Fiol. 28:39:55
  5. Buha. Bali30:01:35

Full results HERE

Race Images available HERE

Trail Menorca – Cami De Cavalls 2018

The Trail Menorca Cami de Cavalls is a group of races that show the islands beauty to its full potential. Five races encompass the whole of the island by following the way-marked ‘Cami de Cavalls’ route.

Walking or running 32km’s to 185km’s, there is possibly no better way to embrace the island of Menorca.

Three day’s of running and five races. The TMCDC (Trail Menorca Cami de Cavalls)is the longest race at 185km’s, starting in Ciutadella at 0830 and 1430, runners take in the whole perimeter of the island in a clockwise direction to finish back where they started. They have 46-hours to complete the journey! A quality elite line-up will contest the distance and the men’s race includes Gerard Morales, Antoine Guillon, Eugeni Rosella, Casey Morgan, Pere Lluis Garau, Isma Marques, Toni Contesti and Miguel Capo. For the ladies’ Gemma Aveli, Tere Nimes, Alice Modignani-Fasoli and Tina Ameller.

The TMCN (Trail Menorca Costa North) (100km) starts at 0030h but finishes at the opposite end of the island after weaving in, out and up and down the jagged north coast.

At 0600, the 85km TMCS (Trail Menorca Costa South) starts in Es Castell located in the east at 0600. There is a stark contrast in terrain the west and east. The west is rugged, aggressive and relentless whereas the east is lush and the journey south is a plethora of coves, beaches, rock and of course turquoise sea that makes Menorca so appealing to tourists.

The 32km TCN (Trekking Costa North) starts in Addaia at 0800. Running into coves, forest, beaches and trail turn Menorca into a playground illuminated by the moon and the glow of head torches.

And finally, at 0900 on day 2, the TCS (Trekking Costa South) 55km runners start their journey back to Ciutadella from Calan Porter.

Trail Menorca have a simple concept to provide runners of all ability an opportunity to experience the best of Menorca. Of course, it’s a huge challenge for the race organisation to cover so many races over so much terrain, however, they have been doing this for many years and the race grows in stature each time. Menorca has a casual, relaxed way of life, for one weekend, the island becomes alive with athletes as they journey around the island.

“I was amazed by the beauty, the varying terrain and the scenery. The final 20km of the 85km event although flat were brutal. I had just not anticipated that the terrain would be so technical,” said Elisabet Barnes post race in 2015. Two bloody knees confirmed her effort and commitment.

“I have to agree, this island was a surprise. I run in Mallorca a great deal,” said Casey Morgan. “I had not anticipated that the island would be as flat as it is but in sections the trail is extremely technical. The contrast from north to south is also quite amazing. It’s a beautiful island.”

The next pedition will soon be underway as runners from all over the world arrive in Menorca from May 16th in anticipation of the 2018 Cami de Cavialls.

More reading:

HERE

HERE

Mayonnaise, gin, cheese and taulas – Trail Menorca 2015 by Niandi Carmont

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Mayonnaise, gin, cheese and taulas ……..what do these words bring to mind? No, you got it wrong! The answer is ………Menorca!

Yep, not many people know that mayonnaise (and who doesn’t love dollops of it on chips) was invented by the Duc de Richelieu on encountering and adapting the Menorca aioli. As for gin this little island is home to Xoriguer Distillery and is well-known for producing its own distinctively fragrant variety of the spirit.

But where is Menorca might you ask? This Balearic Island is located in the Mediterranean off the Spanish coast not far from Mallorca. Menorca means windy island and hardly surprising as there is a gentle breeze on most days due to its relatively flat relief. A little wind is welcome if you consider that the island enjoys 300 days of yearly sunshine.

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Booze, sea and sun ….convinced? Well what enticed me to the island were none of the aforementioned but more the opportunity to take part in what I consider to be a fantastic and scenically beautiful trail race. The Cami de Cavalls is the backdrop of several trail races organized on the island in May. It is an ancient hiking trail/path of 186km that takes you around the coastline of the island. This long-distance walking route is the GR223 of the Senderos de Gran Recorrido network in Spain. Historically-speaking the Cami de Cavalls was built in order to connect the watchtowers, fortresses and cannons distributed along the coast. It was patrolled by soldiers mounted on horses hence the word cavalls meaning horses in Catalan.

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In the 2015 edition there were several distances: 185km, 100km, 55km (trekking), 32km (trekking).

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The 85km race (TMCS, Trail Menorca Costa Sud)) takes on the whole southern coastline from Es Castell to Ciutadella. This is the trail race I decided to do as I really wanted to experience as much of the historic Cami de Cavalls as possible but had only just recovered from Marathon des Sables 4 weeks prior. Taking that into consideration it seemed the best and most reasonable option. I arrived in Menorca on Thursday and my race start was on Saturday so this provided me with the opportunity to relax a little, do some sight-seeing and pick up my number and chip without too much stress. Thursday on arrival in Ciutadella I picked up my number and chip after some leisurely tapas and rosé in the port and attended the race briefing in the late afternoon for the 185km. This was followed by a cocktail with some local dignitaries involved in the sponsorship and promotion of Trail Menorca .

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The Friday was spent walking around the cobbled streets in the old quarter of Citadel and having fresh grilled squid al fresco with 2015 MDS winner Elisabet Barnes near the town-hall and an early night in anticipation of the early race start the following day. Saturday I was woken by my alarm at 5am. Some instant porridge and I was off to catch the shuttle bus at 6am to the start in Es Castell. What is practical about the different races is that they all finish in Ciutadella, the 185km and 100km (TMCN Trail Menorca Costa Nord) starting a day before. Shuttle buses at the finish in Ciutadella take the runners to the start of the different races so logistically it makes sense to book your accommodation at the finish and it is completely hassle-free. Also should you drop out (highly unlikely of course) or not make the cut off times shuttle busses are laid on at the checkpoints to take you back to the finish).

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An 85km drive along the coastline and the bus of excited runners arrives in Es Castell. During the journey Elisabet and I exchange worried looks as the rain starts pelting down – this must be one of the 65 days of rain on the island! However, it proves to be just a short-lived downpour and at 8am we start the race in cool and pleasant temperatures.

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The course is well marked with the over 2.200 GR 223 landmarks making it hard to get lost with added signage and red & white tape in urban areas on lamps or posts. These are reinforced with spray paint, biodegradable tape and red leds for runners running at night.

There are 7 well-equipped feed stations on the TMCS offering water, coca cola (ice-cold), isotonic drinks, fruit juices, fruit, nuts, dates, bread, Nutella and local ham and cheese. I found it unnecessary to take any additional food supplies although the race is supposed to be “self-sufficient” and runners are encouraged to do so. The support, friendliness and encouragement at the feed stations are amazing. When you do this race you really don’t feel like a number when you are cheered as you enter the feed station and cheered when you leave!

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I was incredibly surprised at the beauty of the course. I had been told that the TMCN along the North Coast was more scenic although much more technical but to be honest the TMCS was absolutely stunning. The variety of the course is unrivalled – beach sections, little coves of azure turquoise water, tiny coastal villages, luscious green flowered fields and cliffs overlooking the island’s multitude of pristine bays.

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The course is partly exposed and partly shaded providing a certain amount of respite from the midday sun. Temperatures at this time of the year can vary and although the day spent sightseeing was quite hot (36°C), on race day it was pleasantly mild. The only technical parts of the course are along the sea-front on hardened rock formations where you can easily trip up especially once fatigue starts setting in and the last section of the course although flat was quite technical and rocky with the head-on wind from the North Tramuntana complicating matters! At this point I was walking as I really didn’t want to trip up on the rocks and no longer had the energy to battle against the wind.

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The final kilometres of the race take you through the coastal seaside resorts into the finish area at Ciutadella where a welcoming crowd of local supporters and giant paella and free beers await the finishers. The icing on the cake? The beautiful medal with the words Live the Legend……..and I really felt I lived the Cami de Cavalls ….. until 2016 that is!

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Ciutadella and the surrounding area is extremely Spanish and beautiful – take a look.

Race images are available to view and purchase HERE

COMPRESSPORT TRAIL MENORCA CAMI DE CAVALLS 2015 – Race Images

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COMPRESSPORT TRAIL MENORCA CAMI DE CAVALLS 2015

The Compressport Trail Menorca series of races concluded today, Sunday 17th May on the stunning island of Menorca, Spain. Providing a 360 degree perspective of the beautiful Spanish island, a series of five races (32km to 185km) gave each and every runner a stunning visual journey of all that Menorca has to offer. Rocks, technical trail, beautiful beaches, turquoise sea, lush trees and hidden away coves. Here is a selection of images that tell the journey of the races and provides an insight into all that Menorca has to offer.

Race reports, results and summaries will follow.

All images ©iancorless.com – all rights reserved

COMPRESSPORT TRAIL MENORCA CAMI DE CAVALLS 2015 PREVIEW

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Following on from Transvulcania, attention this coming weekend turns to Zegama-Aizkorri and Menorca for the COMPRESSPORT TRAIL MENORCA CAMI DE CAVALLS 2015. 

Cami de Cavalls map

The Menorca Cami De Cavalls takes place on 15, 16 and 17th May on the beautiful island of Menorca. A series of races are offered that provide all those involved to see the beauty of this majestic island.

The island is known for its collection of megalithic stone monuments: navetes, taules and talaiots, which speak of a very early prehistoric human activity. Some of the earliest culture on Menorca was influenced by other Mediterranean cultures, including the Greek Minoans of ancient Crete . For example the use of inverted plastered timber columns at Knossos is thought to have influenced the population of Menorca imitating this practice. The location of Menorca in the middle of the western Mediterranean was a staging point for different cultures since prehistoric times. This Balearic Island has a mix of colonial and local architecture. Menorca’s cuisine is dominated by the Mediterranean diet, which is known to be very healthy. Whilst many of the locals have adopted modern attitudes they still uphold certain old traditions.

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As a small island, large sporting events are seldom seen. However, in recent years, a couple of sport events have managed to gather hundreds of participants; Extreme Man Menorca triathlon and the single-staged ultra marathon race Trail Menorca Cami de Cavalls.

 

The TMCDC embraces the small island and utilizes the trails to full affect offering a series of races (five in total) that allow runners to participate in a race of 32km or a traverse of the whole island in 185km.

 

TMCDC 185km

Trail Menorca Cami de Cavalls (TMCdC) is an ultra distance of 185,3 km and a positive slope of 2,863 m where each runner will discover their limits and enjoy an idyllic landscape on this island in the Mediterranean Sea, you will find beaches, cliffs, and incredible views.

 

TMCN 100km

The Trail Costa Nord (TMCN) explores the North of Menorca over a distance of 100 km. A positive incline of 1796m, runners will discover precious places in Menorca, beautiful trails and incredible views.

 

TMCS 85km

In the Trail Menorca Costa Sud (TMCS) you will visit beaches of white sand lapped by turquoise water and enjoy ravines and forests.

 

TCS 55km

The Trail Costa Nord (TMCN) provides an opportunity to discover Menorca’s wilder side; high cliffs, constantly changing terrain and beaches that leave you speechless.

 

TCN 32km

32 km Trekking Costa Nord (TCN) runs through the beautiful scenery of the Parc Natural de s’Albufera des Grau.

 

The first edition of the race was held in May 2012 with 270 participants. In recent years the amount of participants has been continuously increasing with 287 in 2013 and 646 in 2014. The 2015 edition will once again se the race reach a new level with a strong participation from respected trail, ultra and mountain runners such as:

 

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ELISABET BARNES – 1st Marathon des Sables 2015

EMMA ROCA – results here

VANESSA RUIZ – Winner Trail Menorca CDC 2014

JAVIER CASTILLO– 3rd Utratrail Collserola 2014

JOEL JALLE CASADEMONT – 2nd Yukon Arctic Ultra 2105, 1st Goldsteig Projekt 500 2014, 5th spine race 2014

EUGENI ROSELLO – winner Spine race 2013, winner VCUF 2014/2013

SERGI COTS – Winner VCUF 2014 (made same finish time with Eugeni)- Third Ultra trail Catalan Cup 2014

IGNASI RIURO – Winner (team) and world record at Oxfam Trail Walker 2015

RAMON GARCIA – 4rt Trail Menorca CDC 2014 – Winner Tabernes Ultratrail 2015

JORGE IVAN CANO BERRIO

DANIEL ALFONSO ZUBIETA

VIVIAN ANDREA ALVAREZ FORERO

AYDE RAIDA SOTO QUISPE

BARBARA KOCH RAMIREZ 

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Course records are as follows:

 

TCDCZigor Iturrieta 21:10:04 and Laia Diez Fontanet 27:16:33

TCNXavier Garcia 10:12:01 and Marta Comas 11:35:11

TCS Joan Noguera 8:03:31 and Brigitte Eggerling 9:53:28

TCN Paco Arnau 2:34:22 and Maria Fiol 3:18:30

TCSJuan Jose Mateos 5:17:36 and Daniela Carolina Moreno 6:42:37

 

 

The racing starts on Friday at 0800 for the TMCDC and TMCN – you can see a full race program HERE

 

I will be working on the race capturing images and stories so please follow on this website, via Twitter @talkultra on Facebook at facebook.com/iancorlessphotography and on Instagram @iancorlessphotography

 

Race website HERE