The ÖTILLÖ Swimrun World Series In Engadin Shows A New Level Of Racing
The first ÖTILLÖ Swimrun World Series race since the Covid pandemic showed some amazing performances along this very challenging race course in the Swiss Alps of the Engadin Valley.
The Engadin valley was the perfect stage for this show down as it is the location that launched the international swimrun movement back in 2014. The imposing mountains, the emarald-coloured lakes and the gruelling course pushed all teams to the maximum.
The very strong Remi Mariette (FRA) & Guillaume Henneman (FRA) - Team Gravelines Triathlon showed why this well-balanced team is one of the future greats of the new generation of French racers. They fought hard and fought smart the whole way winning their second Otillo Swimrun World Series in 5:21:56. a little less than 2 1/2 minutes ahead of Triathlon PROs Antony Costes & Thomas Navarro (FRA) Team Les DT Suisse. Another French team, ARGON 18 Pierre Massonneau & Fabien Besancon finished third in 5:32:43.
In the mixed category the competition was equally tough with many of the top racers going for it. The winners Victor Dahl & current world champion Desiree Andersson (SWE) - Team Envol won ahead of former world champion Martin Flinta & Johanna Edman (SWE) racing as Team Thule Crew. Montse Martinez Guerrero & Eduard Barcelo (AND) - Team Envol Andorra took third place. The winning time was 5:37:53 and fifth overall.
The women’s category was a real hornets’ nest with many of the best women in the world on the start line. From the beginning Ulrika Eriksson & Hanna Skarbratt - (SWE) Team ARK Swimrun showed why they are a force to be reckoned with, winning 10 minutes ahead of French pairing Alexia Bailly & Eugenie Plane - Team Altrisquad. Former world champions and swimrun icons Annika Eriksson & Kristin Larson (SWE) - also team ARK Swimrun finished third. The winning time was 5:48:36.
The Otillo Swimrun World Series Engadin 2020 has had a total of 103 registered teams of two, of which only 78 teams started. Over the weekend a total of around 400 racers have participated in the various races representing 24 different nationalities.
The Race In Detail
This 7th edition of Otillo Swimrun World Series Engadin saw 78 teams of two start their Sunday morning by running hard up the valley in Maloja before hitting the very steep hill up to the Lej Cavloc at 1910 metres of elevation, where the first and coldest swim waited for them.
After taking a tour up the mountain the course takes them back down tight and steep trails to the top of the Sils Lake for a warmer swim (16 C) before continuing down the Engadin Valley towards the finish line in Silvaplana. On the way seven swims and three big mountain loops would sap the energy out of the teams and the whole way athletes were surrounded by an amazing backdrop of mountains and glaciers. This is a massive course, at altitude with gruelling uphills, hard downhills and with spectacular and at times, cold swims.
In total, athletes covered almost 40 km on foot and 6 km swimming with a total elevation gain of 1600 metres.
The weather was almost perfect with an overcast morning which turned into a beautiful day with moderate winds.
Several teams had to struggle to make it in time for the two cut offs. Some had to abandon along the way. Around 85% of the teams managed to finish the race.
At all Otillo swimrun World Series events teams race in pairs. Using each other’s strengths will push boundaries. The team experience is incomparable and is part of why swimrun is growing so fast in popularity.
103 teams of two from representing 21 nationalities travelled to the Engadin in beautiful Switzerland to compete in the Otillo World Series race which also is the first qualifier for Otillo, The Swimrun World Championship 2021 in the Swedish archipelago.
The day prior to the race two shorter, more accessible races were organised, the Otillo Sprint and Otillo Experience, offering the same flavours as the longer, more challenging race but in a smaller format.
Six top teams at Otillo Swimrun World Series Engadin qualify to Otillo, The Swimrun World Championship 2021 on September 6th in the Stockholm Archipelago; top 2 men, top 2 mixed, top 2 women.
The complete results list can be found here: https://otilloswimrun.com/results/otillo-swimrun-engadin-results