UTMB World Series. Eiger Ultra Trail by UTMB. PREVIEW
UTMB World Series. Eiger Ultra Trail by UTMB. PREVIEW. Our UTMB WORLD SERIES bring us the preview of this race from the UTMB World Series, in the world-famous mountain village of Grindelwald.
The queen E101 race will see Katherina Harmuth fight to defend her title in the women’s race, while Hannes Namberger amongst favourites in men’s race. A family affair for Emelie Forsberg and Kilian Jornet as they take on the 50km and 20km races respectively. Unique Eiger limestone medal awaits all finishers, alongside UTMB Running Stones to enter the lottery for UTMB World Series Finals.
UTMB World Series. Eiger Ultra Trail by UTMB. PREVIEW
One of the most demanding but spectacular races on the UTMB® World Series awaits elite and amateur runners alike this weekend as they head to the Swiss Alps to take on Eiger Ultra Trail by UTMB®. Over 4,000 participants from 85 nations will take to the start line at the world-famous mountain village of Grindelwald, with the Eiger North Face setting the scene for an unforgettable alpine adventure as it towers above at 3,970m.
Race Director, Ralph Naf is proud to welcome runners from around the globe, including a star-studded elite line-up. He said, “We can’t wait to welcome runners to Eiger Ultra-Trail by UTMB and for them to experience the beauty and charm of Grindelwald, and the Eiger’s legendary north face. We have a strong elite field this year, with Hannes Namberger and Petter Engdahl taking to the start of the 100km and 50km course, while Kilian Jornet (ESP, UTMB Index 945) will be testing out the 20km format,” said Race Direct, Ralph Naf.
With over 6,700m of ascent over the 100km course, it is no wonder that the E101 attracts some of the best elite runners looking for a tough and attritional day out in the mountains. Alongside Hannes Namberger (GER, UTMB Index 913), Ramon Manetsch (SUI, UTMB Index 873), Phillip Ausserhofer (ITA, UTMB Index 864) and Josh Wade (GBR, UTMB Index 869) could be amongst those vying for the podium.
Namberger said, “The Eiger Ultra-Trail by UTMB is a race that has been on my bucket list for a long time and this year it is finally here. I have never been to Grindelwald before, so I am really looking forward to walking past the north face of the Eiger. It will be a difficult race with so much elevation and altitude difference over the 100km, but I am really looking forward to this challenge.”
“The preparation was good, although sometimes difficult because I had to recover from the World Championships in early June. Nevertheless, I was able to run a few important sessions that give me security for this race and my goal is to give everything that my body allows and get the best possible performance. We will see what comes out in the end.”
In the women’s E101 race, Katherina Hartmuth (GER, UTMB Index 755) returns to defend her title after an incredible race in 2022. She will be joined by Kathrin Goetz (SUI, UTMB Index 728) who recently finished second at Trail 100 Andorra by UTMB® and will be looking for redemption on this course after suffering an early DNF in the last edition of the race due to a calf injury.
With the E51 course also known as the Panorama Trail, runners will be spoiled by breath-taking views, including the UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site of Jungfrau-Aletsch – the longest glacier in the Alps. The views must be earned however, including a demanding ascent up Faulhourn at 2,680m.
Andreas Reiterer (ITA, UTMB Index 912) heads into the race as one of the favourites despite June being a mixed bag of results for the Italian professional, with an impressive second place at the World Mountain and Trail Running Championships preceded by a DNF at Lavaredo Ultra Trail by UTMB® 100M. He will also face tough competition, including Petter Engdahl (SWE, UTMB Index 920), Martin Anthamatten (CHE, UTMB Index 899) and Daniel Osanz (ESP, UTMB Index 902) to name but a few.
In the women’s race, it is all to play for with Julia Kessler (ITA, UTMB Index 761), Eleanor Davis (GBR, UTMB Index 755), Ruth Croft (NZL, UTMB Index 786) and Emelie Forsberg (SWE, UTMB Index 736) amongst the star-studded line-up who will be fighting for a podium position.
Eleanor Davis said, “The 35km race was my first mountain trail race back in 2021 where I was surprised to win it. At that race I fell in love with the sport, Grindelwald, and the surrounding mountains. It is a magical place, and I am excited to return. My goal this year is for a top 3 finish so I can qualify for the OCC at UTMB World Series Finals this year.”
Whether elite or amateur, all runners will be dreaming of crossing the finish line. The Eiger Finisher Stone – a unique medal collected and prepared by a local mountain guide and matching the mythic of the race – also providing an extra incentive, alongside Running Stones to enter the lottery for the UTMB World Series Finals. It will be an unforgettable race for those that take on the spectacular mountainous scenery featuring rustic valleys and the majestic north face of the Eiger.
Live tracking and live streaming are available for Eiger Ultra Trail by UTMB here
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