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Another Historic Edition In Prospect

Author : Press Release
PhotoCredit : Columbia Sportswear

Racing the UTMB

With 70 runners of an international level* 9 of whom with an ITRA performance index of more than 900, the UTMB® is placing the bar very high. For these athletes, it is the guarantee of being able to measure themselves against the best in the world with an organisation whose conditions are irreproachable. It is also the occasion to meet with the wholecommunity and to meet an ever-growing public enthused by the exploits of the runners.

This year, once again, the spectacle promises to be grandiose: one must expect a memorable meeting between the very greatest of the discipline and a new generation of super-talented runners. The American runners are biding their time andare continuing to covet the UTMB® races. Facing them, not only do they find the European athletes who are evolving on their favourite playground, but also the Asian athletes who are gaining in stature and who could take them by surprise.

Will 2018 be the year of consecration for the Americans?

Kilian Jornet - will he recuperate his record of victories?

Overview of the favorites who will be present:

The favorites : The French Caroline Chaverot (806**) will be looking to renew with the victory (2016) after a bitter drop out in 2017. Already victorious in the  CCC® and TDS®, the Swede Mimmi Kokta (780) is taking the plunge and will line up for the start of the UTMB®. Very strong over the last 2 seasons and able to play the general ranking, she will be a very high class opponent for the Spaniard, Núria Picas (755), winner in 2017 who will return to demonstrate her talent to everybody. The Swiss Andrea Huser (776), champion of the 2017 Ultra-Trail® World Tour, will attempt to finally achieve this first place which has escaped her two consecutive years (2016 and 2017). As for the outsiders, Uxue Fraile Azpeitia (ESP) is making her return to the UTMB® after a second place in 2015. The Chinese Fuzhao Xang, 2nd best athlete of her country, and the French revelation, Christelle Bard, 3rd last year, have every chance and probably less pressure.

The favorites : This year once again, the race promises to be exciting and memorable. The Spanish icon, Kilian Jornet (926) will be back to the UTMB®. He should redouble his motivation and freshness to realise an incredible feat that only he has the secret. He will side by side with no less talented runners than Xavier Thévenard (900), the Americans, Jim Walsmley (946), Hayden Hawks (920), Zach Miller (905), or even Tim Tollefson (902). If Jim can manage to grasp the 100 mile format, he will be a formidable opponent for the discipline's specialists.

Bet held for  the French Michel Lanne (869) who will take the start of the UTMB® after having flown over the TDS® and CCC®, it is logical that he is going to attack the 171 km of the mythical loop. At 41, the Spanish double world trail-running champion and biathlete, , Luis Alberto Hernando (921) has not said his last word. Winner of the Tor des Géant in 2017, and 5th in the UTMB® in 2016, the Spaniard Javier Dominguez Ledo is a strong challenger for the  UTMB® which already promises to be a high quality race.  

The favorites The Americans will try to win the bet on the TDS ® with a delegation of confirmed athletes.

They will be represented by Clare Gallagher (769), Yiou Wang (772), or even Rory Bosio (745). The athlete from Boulder, Clare Gallagher, made a name for herself by winning the  CCC® the first time she ran it. Less well-known by the general public, but just as sharp the American Yiou Wang is no beginner. Fourth female athlete in North America, she was the winner of the very competitive Lake Sonoma ahead of Magdalena Boulet and Kaci Lickteig, Yiou Wang should give a hard time to the other  contenders.

In opposition with her friends runners, the Canadian, Alissa St Laurent (743)  began with the complete tour before launching out on the adjacent races. Sixth in the UTMB® last year, she has the endurance  necessary to excel in the TDS®. No need to introduce the bubbly Rory Bosio, twice winner of the UTMB® (2013, 2014), the Californian has launched the challenge of winning all the UTMB® races.

The favorites : With 46 runners having an ITRA performance index superior or equal to 800, the density of the line-up of high performance runners in the TDS® promises to produce a very competitive race. In particular one should count on the British, Tom Owens (912), the American Dylan Bowman (891) seventh in the 2017 UTMB® , Ludovic Pommeret (FR) winner of the 2016 UTMB® (884), the Polish Marcin ??wierc (872) second in the CCC® in 2017, or even the Spaniard  Jessed Hernandez Gispert (872).

The Frenchman, Sylvain Camus (843), has signed on for the  TDS® again after a furious race in 2017 with his breakaway companion, Antoine Guillon (867) who will also be on the starting line for the podium. Amongst the runners who are gaining strength in this type of format, the Frenchman Aurélien Collet (848), who opened his season with a very solid second place in the Transgrancanaria should be very closely followed, as should the Irishman Paddy O'Leary (847) 14th in the 2017 CCC® .

The favorites The Chinese Miao Yao (768) has launched her season with an exceptional race in the  Vibram Hong Kong 100. As yet little known in Europe, this athlete, stemming from marathons, is the best female athlete in China. Winner of the mythic Comrades Marathon, the American Camille Herron (796) is coming to test the exigent relief of the Alps after a  very successful 2017 season which made her worthy of her being named Ultrarunner Of the Year (UROY) in the United States. Second in the CCC® in 2017, and best athlete in her country, the Spaniard Maite Maiora Elizondo should be capable of managing her race perfectly.

The favorites : For a long at the top of the ITRA rankings, the Canadian Rob Krar (899) has announced that he is coming to the  CCC®, and so, making official his participation in the World Summit of Trail-Running after cancelling in 2015 due to injury. With his top speed and experience over 100 miles, Rob Krar has all the assets for electrifying the race. Especially as the rising star of the discipline, and compatriot Timothy Freriks (912), fresh from a brilliant 2017 season, will also be at the rendezvous. Ultra rapid, the runner from Flagstaff is no other than Jim Walsmley's training partner and has just run off with his FKT (Fastest Known Time) over the famous  Rim to Rim  section in the Grand Canyon. The prospect of a greatspectacle!

Third in the 2017 Ultra-Trail® World Tour, The Englishman, Thomas Evans (852) is on very good form after his victory ahead of Hayden Hawks during the Coastal Challenge Costa Rica. Vice-champion of the world of trail-running, Clemente Mora Cristofer (878) is a discrete but formidable runner. He will be capable of playing to win this the 13th CCC®. 

After the Untied States, it is China's turn to send its best elements. It will be represented, during the week of the  UTMB®by Min Qi (866) who has just won the Vibram Hong Kong 100 beating the record established by François d'Haene. An international class performance which was worth 896 points with the International Trail Running Association (ITRA).

The favorites : The Spaniard Eli Gordon Rodriguez (742), will try to defend her title, which she took without warning on the day of her birthday. Along the route she will be confronted by the French woman Amandine Ferrato (761), actually vice-champion in the world of trail-running but also Canada's rising star, Marianne Hogan (761), very at ease on this type of format and the top athlete in her country.

The favorites  : Very strong during the last 2 seasons, the  Champion of France of long trail-runs Nicolas Martin (894), has signed up for his return during the week of the UTMB®. He will have to contend with the speed of his compatriot Thibaut Baronian (884) second last year, who dominated the race for a long time. The two Frenchmen will also have to measure themselves against Spain represented by Eugeni Gil (882), who had a very good 2017 season and is very fast over a marathon format but also the experience of Daniel Garcia Gomez (872), fifth in the world trail-running championships.

* Runners having an ITRA index superior or equal to 850 (superior or equal to 750 for women)

** ITRA performance index (International Trail Running Association). More information at:

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