Strong Swedish Trail Racing Performances
Come end of summer and a bunch of trail races pile up. August 23 the ultra running elite and newbies took on the first edition of a future classic ultra, the 90K ‘Ultravasan’, which follows the course of the classic nordic ski race Vasaloppet. Local ultra running hero Jonas Buud (not Budd) was predicted to win and did indeed win, very convincing in just over 6 hours: 6,02,03, 10,5 minutes ahead of Steve Way (GBR).
It was also interesting to note the performances of the young Swedish ultra trail runners Elov Olsson (8th) and Johan Lantz (6th). Daniel Nilsson M40 took 7th, with 4 swedes in top 10, beating among others the french top ultra-trail runner Thomas Lorblanchet (9th). Holly Rush (GBR), the road runner turned trail runner after a trip to Nepal, was the big favourite, and won before Swedish runners Mimmi Kotka, Lena Gavelin and Sophia Sundberg. http://ultra.vasaloppet.se/
In Zermatt, Switzerland on August 23rd the second edition of Matterhorn Ultraks took place, a 46K mountain trail race circumnavigating the Mattertal, Morroccan runner Ait Malek Zaid took first place with 4,45,01. The spectacular race course that passes Gornergrat 3100m at its highest point saw Stevie Kramer win the womens category. Emelie Forsberg came 5th, obviously not in her best shape. Also a few male Swedish runners had been attracted to the race, pinned as ‘one of the worlds most beautiful challenges’ with the pointy silouette of Matterhorn.
André Jonsson finished 6th in the 46K race, in front of strong Norwegian runners Torbjörn Ludvigsen (9) and Eirik Haugsness (19). Swedish based Runtramp-blogger Robbie Lawless came 2oth. Johan Johansson were 4th in the 30K race and Staffan Björklund 6th in the 16K category. http://ultraks.peakperformance.com/en#ultraks
Next up: UTMB, Tor des Géants, Tromsö Skyrace, Icebug Experience Sept 5-7 (a 3-day trail race in the west coast of Sweden I will run myself), Gore-Tex Transalpine-Run, and of course the 50 years anniversary of the classic park trail race Lidingöloppet (30K) Sept 27.