Tag - Skyrunning

Limone Extreme 2018

In this Limone Extreme 2018, Lake Garda situated east of Milan and west of Venice has long been a destination as holiday resort. Limone sul Garda as the name suggests, sits on the lakes edge on the north west side.

Flanked by sheer mountains. The heart of the old town is the little harbour, the old Port Porto (‘Porto Vecchio’). Narrow lanes lined with tourist shops wind in and along the shore with a plethora of streets that go up the slopes behind.
In the other direction, south, is the more modern part of Limone that includes a waterfront promenade, it is here that the start and the finish of the Limone Extreme races 2018 takes place.

The steep aggressive mountains don’t require too much imagination when It comes to designing a race. Skyrunning legend, Fabio Meraldi, has been instrumental though in creating 2 races. Firstly, a VK that travels from the lake 1000m directly up, originally undertaken during darkness.
Limone Extreme 2018
Secondly, a SkyRace of 29km and well over 2000m elevation that leaves the town following lakeside paths to the north of the harbour on a circular route through the mountains back to the shore.
Limone Extreme 2018
Meraldi’s exploits are legendary and gain the respect of all who love our sport. He passed his mountain guide training at the age of 20. Not only a runner, he participated in mountain tours, ski mountaineering and pioneered the early days of Skyrunning with ISF president, Marino Giacometti.
Limone Extreme 2018
Four European titles and nine Italian titles amongst other cups and medals are listed in his palmares, he also won the iconic Pierra Menta ten times and the Sellaronda Skimarathon, six times. However, it is his world records of speed ascending to high mountains that has gained him his iconic place in the sport of mountain running; the most notable on Aconcagua.
Limone Extreme 2018
Leaving Lungolago Marconi next to Lake Garda, a 2km stretch of narrow path leads through the streets of Limone. Passing scattered hotels, peaceful terraces, lemon groves and little secluded beaches before crossing the main coastal road and heading up into the impressive mountains at Reamòl. A breath-taking, rugged ascent leads to Punto Larici, proceeds to Passo Rocchetta and reaches the crest of Monte Carone at 1621 meters above sea level.
Limone Extreme 2018
The second part of the race, with its continuous change in gradients, takes athletes from Bocca dei Fortini at 1200m to Monte Traversole, 1441m and Corna Vecchia 1415m.
Limone Extreme 2018
The course slopes down to Dalco at 842 m before the steep descent to the finish line in Limone. It’s a course that epitomizes the pure ethos of Skyrunning; to the summit and back as quickly as possible. Something that Meraldi is a firm believer in!
In a deeply stacked international field, youngster Davide Magnini not only took the win but crushed the record by eight minutes delivering a memorable performance. He covered the challenging and technically demanding 29 km long course with 2,500m vertical climb in 2h59’24”. Rémi Bonnet, fresh from yesterday’s Vertical Kilometer® World Champion title at the same venue placed 2nd and Spaniard Oriol Cardana closed the podium.

I’m really surprised by this result… I found my pace and my legs worked really well. I stayed focused all the time and beating the record held by a legend like Marco De Gasperi is simply humbling,”

Limone Extreme 2018 women’s result

  • In Limone Extreme 2018 the women’s race was won again by orienteering world champion Tove Alexandersson from Sweden who raced her first skyrunning race here last year. Known to give it her all, today’s win was no different.
  • Ragna Debats closed second, triumphant with her new Overall title.
  • Third was Spaniard Sheila Avilés.

“It was so tough for me today. I’ve had a long season with many orienteering competitions… I wasn’t sure to come here because I was so destroyed,” said Tove post-race. “When I started I felt terrible, but I was just fighting, fighting all the way… I really enjoy these challenges and that’s what I love!”

Skyrunning  was born in Italy, it only seems appropriate that the traditions and ethos created on the slopes of the snowy Alps should now be carried forward on new mountains and in new places such as the Creste Della Mughera mountains that back on to Limone sul Garda.
Limone Extreme 2018


8th Installment of Limone Extreme

The Eighth Installment of Limone Extreme 

Events kicked off on Friday evening, with the Limone Vertical Kilometer, a 3KM long, 1100-meter ascent that winds its way through the town center, up into an olive grove, and through a forest. The encroaching dimness and scenic variety of the twilight dash make the event all the more exciting. 183 runners from 20 countries took part in the race.
The Swiss runner Rémi Bonnet conquered the event, setting a new record on the course, at 00:36:02, and also becoming the Vertical Kilometer World Champion. Also hailing from Switzerland, Judith Wyder crowned the women’s results with a time of 00:43:47, defeating the previous women’s record by over a minute.
The 29KM Limone Extreme SkyRace comprises a rugged 2500-meter climb with limestone and gravel footpaths, steep and exhaustive incline features, and perilous descents. The trail is an ovular circuit in the mountains northeast of the town. Since the race caps off the SkyRunner World Series as a bonus race, awarding an extra 50% points towards rankings, competition was, as always, especially fierce.

In Saturday morning’s bristling heat 979 runners made their way to the starting line, representing 37 countries from around the world. Much of the race was a fierce head-to-head, as the results show, but the youthful Italian Davide Magnini tore ahead as the race’s victor, with a time of 02:59:04 , an incredible eight minute advance on the previous course record. Swedish orienteering master Tove Alexandersson finished with a time of 03:31:36, leading the women’s event results.
The marvelous weekend in Northern Italy culminated in the crowning of the Migu Run Skyrunner World Series champions. The Sky Classic Champions this year are the Swiss Pascal Egli and Briton Holly Page. This title is awarded based on runners’ five best performances in events from the Sky Classic Series, including a 50% bonus for their results in Limone.
The Overall Champions this year are the celebrated Catalan Killian Jornet and Dutch Ragna Debats. This title embodies runners’ best two results in Sky Classic and Sky Extra. An end of season bonus pool of €66,000 was distributed across victors of all three titles.
The weekend also included a 10KM for runners who sought to experience the sky running terrain without the full-fledged ardor the Extreme SkyRace entails. Donna4SkyRace, a project that seeks to support and empower women in the running community, both casual and professional, was also new this year. The project offers promotional registration pricing for women at the 10KM event.

Contouring the mountainous views at Limone is the alpine lake Garda, Italy’s largest. Naturally, the lake’s scenic views and pristine water offer a sight to be seen –– for tourists flock to Limone’s resorts year-round.
Yet the terroir of Limone is especially significant to our community­­; the region’s mountain paths are the lifeblood of our sport, and are themselves relevant to the town’s history. Until the 1930s, these mountain paths were the only land-based route for accessing the region, and sustained the local populace during numerous periods when the town neared desertion.
Limone is a bustling destination today, and the region’s mountain paths remain as vital as ever, as this weekend attests. For many, Limone caps off a packed year of racing and the start of preparations for the 2019 season.
The notion of a blank slate, a new start, is as rousing as ever.

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Tromso SkyRace

Jagged mountain peaks break through the ground as if they want to torture the landscape. Sharp rocks and boulders are interspersed with snow and ice. It’s the Hamperokken mountain range and the most exposed and technical section of the Tromso SkyRace – an extreme category race in the 2017 Migu Run Skyrunner Extreme Series.
The race is the inspiration of mountain and Skyrunning icons, Emelie Forsberg and Kilian Jornet. It does not need a creative mind to understand that any course or race organized by this duo will be challenging, tough, dramatic and memorable! The Tromso SkyRace does not disappoint. It’s a race that harks back to the early days of Marino Giacometti, the creator of Skyrunning.
Back in the late 80’s, Giacometti pioneered a sport of fast-and-light, a sea-to-summit or town-to-summit project – it’s about going fast to the summit and returning as quickly as possible. Monte Rosa, Mt Blanc, Kinabalu – yes, Fabio Meraldi, Bruno Brunod and Giacometti laid the foundations for the modern-day sport that is now called Skyrunning.
The Tromso SkyRace is a personification of those early formative years and Jornet is the modern-day exponent of the original ethos of fast and light. The Catalan needs no introduction. His five-year project called ‘Summits of my Life’ was very much a personal extension of racing as a Skyrunner; this journey culminated in his final summit, Everest.
In Skyrunning and mountain running, Jornet is a rock star. He’s a modest star and one who shuns the spotlight and attention his incredible ability attracts. He is one of the most gifted and natural runners of our time – no doubt. His partner, Forsberg, is equally an inspiring role model for the sport and the duo are the dynamic duo of the sport.
Imagine turning up to a local tennis match to find Nadal and Williams running around helping, organizing, setting things up and manning a registration desk… yes, it’s hard to imagine! But, the Tromso SkyRace is exactly this. Forsberg and Jornet, along with a dedicated team of helpers, run one of the most incredible Skyrunning events on the calendar.
Jornet runs in the mountains placing flags, setting up the routes and Forsberg is back in Tromso making sure that all logistics are in place. It’s amazing to see and it really does make one realize what a great community this sport is.
Now in its fourth edition, the race has grown as one of the pinnacle races of Skyrunning. It’s not a race any runner can undertake. The course is 57km in length and a whopping 4600m of vertical gain – but this is only a small part of the story. Featuring two peaks, the Tromso SkyRace is by any standards – extreme! The Hamperokken ridge which is a key feature of the race is at the midpoint of the race and features an exposed, technical and at time knife edged arête that will require even the most experienced Skyrunner to use four points of contact to traverse the ridge and its summit. Followed by snowfields, challenging terrain, and a steep climb – this race is the ultimate challenge.
It’s a bucket list race!
The 2017 edition of the race saw a return of the 2016 champion Jon Albon. Albon was the 2016 Skyrunner World Series Extreme Champion and recently won the Ultra SkyMarathon Madeira. In addition to his exploits in Skyrunning, he is a multiple world champion at Obstacle Racing. Competition for the Brit was going to come from Nepalese sensation Bhim Gurung, Lavaredo Ultra winner, Fabian Antolinos, Michel Lanne, Zaid Ait Malek, Hector Haines, Cody Lind and a host world-class talent.
Tromso SkyRace
In the ladies’ race, 2016 champion Jasmin Paris was unable to race leaving the door open for an in-form Maite Maiora who is in incredible form in 2017. Equally, Ragna Debats would toe the line along with Megan Kimmel, Hillary Allen, Nuria Picas, and Marlene Bikken Haukoy.
Known for inclement weather, for once, the sun gods shone on Norway allowing everyone a dry and relatively clear day to enjoy the mountains, fjords and incredible views that this part of the world offers.
Darkness does not come to Norway at this time of the year, the race, therefore, started 0800 with no pressures on the arrival of darkness. With the race underway, the early miles were dominated by Maiora and Albon as they dictated the pace.
Albon was followed by a strong group including Gurung and Lanne. Maiora, by contrast, was out on her own followed by Debats and Picas.
The Hamperokken ridge coming midway into the race is a significant marker and it was here that Albon and Maiora extended their leads. For the ladies though, Debats was going through a tough time and on the descent from the summit she was passed by Picas – the race was on.
Gurung made his move in the men’s race leaving Lanne and Antolinos and went off in pursuit of Albon. For the ladies, Debats did not give in, her stomach issues eased and she re-caught Picas and passed her. She then chased Maiora using her natural run speed to close in on the leader.
Maiora was too strong though, she took victory just 4-minutes ahead of Debats, both runners going under the old course record set by Jasmin Paris. Picas placed 3rd.
Albon lead from the front and looked relaxed, he once again took an incredible victory 8-minutes ahead of Gurung. Lanne placed 3rd over 20-minutes later with a beaming smile, content with an incredible day in the mountains.
Just one race is now left in the Extreme Series of the 2017 Migu Run Skyrunner World Series. Maiora cannot be beat with two victories. However, for the men, Gurung and Albon have one victory each – it will all come down to the last race. It’s a nail biter!
Information on the Migu Run Skyrunner World Series HERE
Extreme Series Races:
Royal Ultra SkyMarathon Gran Paradiso HERE
Tromso SkyRace HERE
Glencoe Skyline HERE
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