It is UTMB Weekend!!!
For those who do not know yet, UTMB (Ultra Trail Mont Blanc) is on this weekend. On Friday the 1st of September, 2000 participant will start at 5pm to compete in one of the toughest trail race in the world: approximately 166 kilometres (103 mi) around the Mont Blanc, for a total elevation gain of around 9,60 m!
This year’s edition is particularly exciting as the world best trailers of the moment are competing against each other. UTMB is offering live coverage of the race at http://utmbmontblanc.com/en/live/tds and here are the people to follow:
Killian is the undisputed star of trail running. He has already won three times the loop around Mont-Blanc. After climbing Everest twice in one week early this summer, and winning three trail races, he is the favourite of UTMB.
9 years ago I did my first ultratrail here in Chamonix. Coming from skyrunning and ski mountaineering what it attracts me when I was 20 years old to do a 170km race was to know if my body was able to run for such a long distance. Since then I have enjoyed every year to run this long distances all around the world. #utmb @salomonrunning
The great Francois has already two victories at UTMB, the last of which during his perfect season of2014 (winner of the UTMB, the UTMF and the Grand Raid of the Reunion). After a season focused on record projects, he is back to his best level strong with a recent victory at the Madeira Island Ultra-Trail. He should be Jornet’s main challenger.
The American is not only running to win, but he (almost) always wants to break records. In 2016 he recorded 9 victories in 11 races (mostly in the United States), with 5 event records. There is little doubt that Jim Walmsley is a potential UTMB winner.
Xavier has participated to 5 UTMB events winning each of them ( UTMB, CCC, TDS OCC). But this year the competition is unprecedented: will he manage a third victory on the race?
In 2016, Zach pushed his limits at UTMB running strong but burning out along the way to finish 6th. Will that experience help him this year against the world’s best?
The Lithuanian has never won at UTMB, but reached an impressive second place in 2016. Gediminas Grinius has steadily improved in recent years and achieved great victories on the Ultra-Trail World Tour.
Caroline was crowned as best trailer in the world in 2016 and is the defending UTMB champion. The French athlete is the great favorite!
Andréa and Caroline had a great duel at UTMB 2016, and this year could offer similar scenario between the Swiss and the French.
Nuria has been around the trail running scene for many years now. The Spaniard has won the Utra-Trail World Tour twice (2014 and 2015), but has never won the most prestigious of its races, the UTMB (2nd in 2013 and 2014).