3 x 3000m 80km 2016 Race Preview

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Over 4000m (13,000ft) of ascent await participants of this weekend’s 3 x 3000m 80km Ultra providing every participant an opportunity to cover three classic Lakeland peaks. It’s going to be a tough challenge and a key race for the 2016 Skyrunner® National Series ranking.

Based on the classic ‘Lakes 3000’s’ the 80km route will include Scafell Pike, Helvellyn and Skiddaw. An amazing circular route over some of the best mountains available within the UK, it promises to be a tough challenge but hopefully not as tough as the 2014 edition when the race was hit with torrential rain. The route may not have the required altitude that a Skyrunning race would require in France, Spain or Italy but as we have shown at the V3K and the recent Skyline Scotland races, we can compensate for this with steep short climbs and technical terrain. The 3×3 route combines all the elements of a classic Lakeland run with aspects of European racing; technical terrain, beautiful mountains and hills.

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In the ladies ranking, Sarah Ridgway currently is leading with victories at Lakes Sky Ultra and the Peak SkyRace and a recent 3rd place at the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline. Sarah will not race at the 3×3. However, Sarah Sheridan will race and she will be looking for maximum points! Sarah placed 3rd in two races, the V3K and Peak SkyRace providing 156 points but she also placed 9th at Lakes Sky Ultra providing 60 points. Her tally is currently 216 points.

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Bjorn Verduijn has run all four races (he chose the Salomon Ring of Steall at Skyline Scotland) and therefore has a strong lead in first place. Bjorn will also race the 3×3 and may well place on the podium, it all depends how his recovery has gone just one week after racing.

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Pre-race favourite for the 3×3 is Paul Tierney who is a previous winner of the Lakeland 100 and a committed fell and mountain runner.

A full list of entrants is available to view HERE

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Many thanks to Raidlight UK for the continued support of the Skyrunning UK Series

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Skyline Scotland 2016 – VK, SKY and EXTREME

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What an incredible weekend for Skyrunning and Skyrunning UK! Skyline Scotland did more than place the UK on the map, it blew the Skyrunning world apart.

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On Friday it was the Salomon Mamores VK (a UK first) that sent hundreds of runners sky high gaining 1000m vertical in 5km. For many, it was a first taste of such a race and boy-oh-boy was it a resounding success. From that fast and furious pace of Alexis Sevennec to the very last runner, one thing was confirmed – Skyrunning as a sport is accessible for all and the VK is a great place to start.

You can read a summary and view images HERE

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Saturday was the Salomon Ring of Steall, a classic SKY distance race that started and concluded in Kinlochleven after taking in a stunning, challenging and difficult loop of the Mamores. Skyrunning World Champion Stian Angermund took top honours ahead of VK winner, Alexis Sevennec and in the ladies race, Georgia Tindley did the double, winning the VK and SKY!

You can read a summary and view images HERE

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Sunday was the big showdown and the highlight of the weekend, the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline, the 3rd and concluding event in the Skyrunner World Series for the EXTREME category. Arguably, the greatest elite field ever assembled for a UK mountain race toed the line. Victory and series titles were awarded to Jonathan Albon and Jasmin Paris after they both ran strong and dominant performances.

You can read a summary and view images HERE

It’s also important to note that the Skyrunning UK Series battled on over the Skyline Scotland weekend with points awarded for the overall series title. Currently rankings need to be compiled and accessed but it’s fair to say at this early stage that Sarah Ridgway and Bjorn Verduijn strengthen their positions. More to follow…

More media:

BBC – HERE

Red Bull – HERE

Skyrunning – HERE

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2016 RANKING UPDATE – Skyrunning UK – Skyrunner® National Series

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The Skyrunning UKSkyrunner® National Series 2016 is well underway and with three races completed – V3K, Lakes Sky Ultra and the Peak SkyRace it is time to post an update on the rankings.

To clarify, the 2016 ranking includes ALL the races in the 2016 UK calendar and yes, that includes the UK’s first ever VK!

Including ‘all’ races in a calendar would not normally be the case as per the Skyrunner® World Series, however, the UK series is still relatively small and we want to encourage participation in all races and all distances. It may well show a complete and rounded athlete?
To score for the series, you need 4 races to qualify for the series and should you complete more than 4, then your best 4 results count.
Importantly, the 3×3 in the Lakes is very soon (and has entries available) and if you need a race or points, that is the one to enter…! Don’t think easy points will come at the Salomon Mamores VK™ or the Ring of Steall Skyrace™, both races will be a full on lung and leg busters but a few places still remain.

What can you win?

  • In addition to prize money awarded at each race, the male and female 2016 Skyrunning UK Champions will receive:
  • Free entry into all Skyrunning UK races in the following year.
  • Guaranteed entry into a 2017 Skyrunner World Series event with 2-nights accommodation.
  • Prizes from Skyrunning UK sponsor, Raidlight

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Current Ranking

Women:

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In the ladies ranking, Sarah Ridgway currently has a 200 points from victories at Lakes Sky Ultra and the Peak SkyRace. This places Sarah in a very strong position for the UK series but despite two victories, Sarah ranks 2nd.

Currently the 2016 ladies leader is Sarah Sheridan who has completed three out of three races. Sarah placed 3rd in two races, the V3K and Peak SkyRace providing 156 points but she also placed 9th at Lakes Sky Ultra providing 60 points. Her tally is currently 216 points.

Beth Pascall won the V3K and this provides her with 100 points. But the great thing about a series is consistency and therefore Katie Boden currently lies 3rd in the ranking with 166 points coming from 2nd at the V3K and 3rd at Lakes Sky Ultra.

  1. Sarah Sheridan 216 points
  2. Sarah Ridgway 200 points
  3. Katie Boden 166 points

Men:

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The men’s race may well go down to the wire and once again, consistency is playing a key part in the ranking. Despite Michael Jones and Donald Campbell gaining maximum points with victories at the V3K and Lakes Sky Ultra, they have each only run one race!

Ben Hukins placed 4th at the V3K and recently won the Peak SkyRace and this provides a total of 172 points, however, Ben is not in the lead!

Bjorn Verduijn has run all three races and therefore has a strong lead in first place with 2nd at the V3K (88 pts), 9th at the Lakes Sky Ultra (58 its) and finally 3rd at the Peak SkyRace (78 its) providing a grand total of 224 points.

The final podium place is currently with Emmanuel Barbier who placed 10th at the V3K (56 its) and 14th at Lakes Sky Ultra (48 its) providing a total of 104 points.

  1. Bjorn Verdijn 224 points
  2. Ben Hukins 172 points
  3. Emmanuel Barbier 104 points

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You can download this ranking in PDF form HERE

Please note, every effort is made to ensure that the ranking and allocation of points is correct. Mistakes do happen and should you spot anything, please email skyrunninguk@icloud.com and we will look into it immediately.

NEWS

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The next races on the UK calendar are at SKYLINE SCOTLAND which takes place on the 16th, 17th and 18th September. This is one weekend that you will not want to miss and if you are looking for points, some entries are available!

On Friday the 16th we will have the UK’s first ever VK – Salomon Mamores VK™ . If you are not running, come along, bring a bell and cheer runners on as they climb 1000 vertical meters in less than 5km. *Limited places available enter HERE

On Saturday 17th it is the Salomon Ring of Steall Skyrace™ which is 25km and includes 2500m of vertical gain. *Limited places available enter HERE

The main event of the weekend is the Salomon Glen Coe Skyline™ which is a 2016 Skyrunner® World Series event in the three race EXTREME category and this race, I guarantee, will have the greatest elite field ever assembled for a race in the UK that takes place on trails and mountains.

Following an epic weekend in Scotland is the 3×3 in the English Lakes which takes place on September 24th. Three summits, 4000m of vert and 80km in distance. This is a seriously tough, challenging and beautiful race. Entries are available HERE

October draws a conclusion to the 2016 series with the Garmin Mourne Skyline MTR which is full. however, they do put on a great race and maybe you’d like to join the party and enter the GTR evening run which follows the ethos of a VK but over a shorter distance, you can enter HERE

Skyrunning UK is sponsored by Raidlight UK and their help and support is invaluable. Please support the brand that is helping to support this series of exciting racing!

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PEAK SKYRACE 2016 SUMMARY and IMAGES

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This year saw 180 people register for the Peaks SkyRace the third race in the 2016 Skyrunning UK National Series. From the 180 entrants, 147 showed up at the start-line on Sunday of which 136 runners crossed the finish-line. Those who had not completed retired due to minor injuries and/or being timed out. All in all this year’s event was a tremendous success with a lot of novices testing themselves on a “runnable”, faster and less technical Skyrunning course than the V3K and the Lakes Sky Ultra earlier this season. Niandi Carmont provides an insight into the Skyrunning action from the weekend.

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There were many relieved and happy smiles from runners entering Buxton towards the finish and the feedback received was extremely complimentary and positive:

Well now I’ve managed to remove most of the Peak SkyRace route from my knees, elbows, hands etc. I really need to thank all of the race directors, marshals, supporters for another great event. It just keeps getting better. 

Apologies must go out to Forest and Billy for inability to stay upright, thought I’d got that out of my system on the recce!  David Betteley

The course might have been less challenging to experienced Skyrunners but judging from this feedback, it offered a challenge to many yesterday. Michelle Jones echoes his thoughts:

Super tough course, wasn’t sure we were going to finish. We did just about. I think that’s about my limit though!

Hopefully we’ll see Michelle next year to improve on her time?

The day was perfect in terms of weather and temperatures and as predicted the pace set by the front runners was fast and furious from the outset. This was reflected in the times with the top 3 in the general ranking coming in under 5 hours. The race was won with a strong performance from Ben Hukins who took victory in 4:36:12 ahead of Colin Stark in 4:53:42. As predicted flying Dutchman Bjorn Verduijn placed 3rd and the infamous Sarah Ridgeway were in the leading group running strong.

Unfortunately due to the fast pace and concentration waning towards the final kilometres entering Buxton, the runner who was 2nd placed at the final CP missed the markers at a turn where runners would actually retrace their earlier steps of the outbound route and was leading several others right behind. This error led him down a slightly longer route towards the finish.  The next two runners after that group, did see the markers, and as a result picked up several places. Race organisation was quick to react and double-checked the markers only to confirm that there was plenty of tape. An arrow was added for the rest of the field. No doubt more would have come in under 5 hours had they not missed the turn.

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As predicted Sarah Ridgeway dominated the female field and did very well in the general ranking coming in third overall, well ahead of second-placed Kate Hastings. Once again she took a whopping 28 minutes of the CR. The top 5 women came in under 6 hours. Well done ladies!

Novice Scott baxter was enthralled by this “taster”:

Just want to say thanks to everyone involved! had a great day yesterday, my first event at this distance, first of many I guess.

Scott has now been bitten by the bug and we will no doubt see him at future UK Skyrunning events.

Some like Andrew Morley were more concerned with post-race nutrition:

 I forgot to mention, that chocolate cake at the finish was amazing. 

It was equally nice to see that the UK Skyrunning community is very supportive and close-knit. RD Kirsch Bowkler from the V3K volunteered on the course. And the professionalism and dedication of the team of marshals was very much appreciated by the runners:

I really enjoyed the race yesterday. It was very well sign posted and the aid stations were really good with friendly marshals. Mark Boyce

Attention to detail is very important to RD’s Richard Weremuik and Anthony Bethell who have joined forces with course designer Billy Craig to put on a great event. Over the past years they have been very receptive to feedback and fine-tuned their event to meet the needs of participants whether it be facilitating race entry, dealing with race registration, course-marking, delegating to marshals, manning of aid-stations or the welcome on the finish-line.

We always strive to improve route marking, so take all feedback on the chin; good and bad.  We will always react immediately to feedback where we can, or make changes for future editions of the race where appropriate. Richard Weremuik (Running Beyond)

Race Results

Men

1 Ben Hukins 04:36:12

2 Colin Stark 04:53:42

3 Bjorn Verduijn 05:02:56

4 Matthew Basnett 05:03:51

5 Evan Davies 05:09:00

Women

1 Sarah Ridgway 04:56:39

2 Kate Hastings 05:34:48

3 Sarah Sheridan 05:43:01

4 Sophie Kirk 05:56:27

5 Sarah Morwood 05:59:21

Many thanks to Raidlight UK for the continued support of the

Skyrunning UK National Series

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Peak SkyRace 2016 Preview

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The peak District is a large national park that stretches from the Midlands to the northern areas of England and is renowned for its abundance of natural beauty. The terrain is very diverse, wild and undulating. The landscape shifts quickly and is  mix of gullies,  cloughs, rugged plateaus, heather-dotted moorlands and vertiginous summits. What better setting and back-drop for the third edition of the Peak Skyrace?

Niandi Carmont provides a preview of the third event in the Skyrunning UK Series which takes place in the White Peak area (white for limestone) although certain sections of the race cross over into the Dark Peak (gritstone & moorland) that makes up the Peak SkyRace.

On August 6th, 180 runners will be at the start of the third edition of the race. The event follows the V3K on June 18th and LSU on 23 July. The 48km course with an elevation gain of 2000m, will take the runners on the infamous Five Trigs Round, which are:

  • Axe Edge
  • The Roaches
  • Shutlingsloe
  • Shining Tor
  • Burbage Edge

Other noteworthy highlights of the route include the Ramshaw Rocks, Three Shires Head (the meeting point for the Cheshire, Derbyshire and Staffordshire County boundaries) and Gradbach Woods. Another picturesque landmark on the course is Shuttlingsloe,  a steep-sided hill with a distinctive profile, which is sometimes described as the ‘Matterhorn of Cheshire’  and is also the third highest peak in the county. Runners will have to contend with a little scrambling to gain the summit of Shuttlingsloe and check-point 7 which is unmanned. There are a total of 8 check-points on the course of which 5 are unmanned. Food and liquids are provided at the remaining 3 check-points.

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Two prominent athletes attending this year’s event are Bjorn Verduijn in the male field, who is not unknown in UK Skyrunning circles and Sarah Ridgeway, a prominent UK fell-runner, in the female field.

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Bjorn has taken part in several Skyrunning events since the beginnings of UK Skyrunning in 2014 and has fine-tuned his Skyrunning skills over the past couple of years. Of Dutch origin, Bjorn lives in Scotland and trains regularly in the mountains. Like his European Skyrunning counterparts, he has been putting his ski-mountaineering training in winter to good use and this has significantly improved his technique and form. Bjorn placed 2nd at the V3K this year, one of the toughest UK Skyrunning events against very seasoned local competition. In the Lakes Sky Ultra he placed 10th in a time of 8:41:59. He will definitely be seeking to gain more points in the UK series this coming weekend and seems to be on top form.

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Sarah Ridgeway needs no introduction. Like Bjorn, she is not new to Skyrunning and placed 8th overall in Lakes Sky Ultra on 23 July, winning the Ladies Race and setting a new CR of 08:38:46,  taking 25 minutes off her previous CR. She literally dominated the women’s positions and took both the uphill and downhill sections in the race. Sarah will definitely set a fast pace on this extremely “runnable” course as she is used to more technical and challenging terrain as her 3rd place in the Glencoe Skyline in 2015 proves. Welsh and based in Snowdonia, Sarah has plenty opportunities to play and train in the fells. We can expect her to set a new female CR on the Peak Skyrace as well as placing well in the overall ranking.

Course Records stand at 04:10:12 set by Kim Collison in 2015 and 5:24:54 for the female record set  by Sally Fawcett in 2014.

Skyrunning UK thanks the support of Raidlight UK

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Lakes Sky Ultra 2016 Summary and Images

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Skyrunning once again came to the English Lake District with the 2nd edition of the Lakes Sky Ultra, part of Skyrunning UK’s National Series of races.

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Offering an extremely technical course over 56km with 4500m of ascent alone, the Lakes Sky Ultra really does follow the ethos of pure Skyrunning. Two key sections of the route, Eagle Crag and Pinnacle Ridge have roped sections that hark back to the Italian tradition of ‘Via Ferrata.’

Top mountain runners toed the start line alongside a few European runners who had been lured away from the Skyrunning World Championships organized by the ISF (International Skyrunning Federation) in Spain for this epic and extreme mountain race.

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Donnie Campbell, from Scotland, continued his winning streak to take another record after already smashing the Highland Fling and Keswick Mountain Festival 50km Ultra Trail earlier in the year. The 2nd and 3 places fell to a local Ambleside runner Neil Talbolt and Ally Beaven from the Scottish Highlands.

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In the ladies’ race, International Mountain Runner, Sarah Ridgway, who holds the record from 2015, came back fitter and faster to set a ‘hard to beat’ record and smash her own time from the previous year by over 25 minutes and set a new record on the full course, which makes it even more impressive, in a time of 08:39:41. Sophie Grant placed 2nd & 3rd place to Katie Bowden who took the 2nd place in the recent V3K in Wales, the 1st ULTRA of the Skyrunning UK National Series.

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The Lakes Sky Ultra follows the true routes and ethos of Skyrunning which was created on the slopes on Monte Rosa, Italy by ISF President, Marino Giacometti in the late 80’s.

Next race on the Skyrunning UK National Series is the Peak SkyRace which takes place in early August.

*****

Donnie Campbell and Sarah Ridgeway, champions at the 2nd edition of the LAKES SKY ULTRA their respective times 07:30:40 and 8:38:46 and new CR’s.
Second place went to Neil Talbott and Sophie Grant with Alexander Beaven and Katie Boden placing 3rd.
Results are available online here: http://live.lakesskyultra.uk

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Skyrunning UK is sponsored by RAIDLIGHT UK

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Facebook: LakesSkyUltra

Twitter: @ LakesSkyUltra

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Lakes Sky Ultra Race Preview 2016

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“Towering above each other, or lifting themselves in ridges like the waves of a tumultuous sea, and in the beauty and variety of their surfaces and colours, they are surpassed by none.” – Wordsworth

 

Niandi Carmont provides a preview of the 2016 Lakes Sky Ultra

Lakes Sky Ultra™, a SkyRace™ that addresses the routes of the sport, big distance, soaring ridge lines, rock scrambling & more. 56km, 4500m ascent. Rock & Run!

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Well this weekend promises to be full of surprises as the runners registered for the LSU (Lakes Sky Ultra) gather on the start-line to compete in what has become one of the key events on the UK Sky Running calendar. They will be contending with the “waves of the tumultuous sea” as they make their way up and down the mountainous roller-coaster ride founded by Charles Sproson. “Charlie” as he is affectionately called is LSU Race Director. Your paths might have crossed this passionate mountaineer, navigator, fell-runner as he strolls barefoot and disheveled in the streets of Ambleside but make no mistake, although he is no poet, Charlie knows the local fells like the back of his hand and has designed several courses including Marmot Dark Mountains (course planner for 2013, 2015 & 2016), Great Lakeland 3 Day, Rab MM amongst others. As an experienced and accomplished mountain racer, his course planning is entirely from the runners’ perspective. This weekend he promises competitors “56km of Lakeland paths, trails and tussock, 4500m of vertical grind, grade III scrambles, rock chimneys, super-fast descents, knife edge arêtes”. It will be “gnarly, hardcore and awesome”.

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Well who are the main contenders? This year the field is stacked with great local talent. With European sky runners preoccupied with the European championships, there are hardly any international participants.

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MALE CONTENDERS

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Gareth Hughes

Yes, he’s back! Gareth placed 2nd in last year’s race and is back to settle a score. Gareth is not new to Skyrunning UK. He is the official record holder of the V3K, the first event in the UK Skyrunning calendar, although he could not compete in the V3K 2016 due to a virus. So, he has a double score to settle. Gareth’s training has been consistent and it would seem he is on form so definitely a contender for first place and why not a second record to add to his already impressive track record.

Neil Talbott

Neil will be giving Gareth a run for his money! He is apparently also very strong and fit and has just won the Wasdale Horseshoe Fell Race, 34km, 2750m+ in a time of 4:11.

Bjorn Verduijn

Bjorn, Dutch and living in Scotland, has been taking part in UK Skyrunning events since Skyrunning was introduced to the UK in 2014 and has improved his rankings significantly, placing 2nd at V3K 2016. This victory could be partially due to his ski-mountaineering training in recent seasons. Bjorn has plenty experience in UK Skyrunning and this is not his first participation in LSU so the course holds no surprises for him.

Donnie Campbell

Seems blessed with a winning streak at the moment. He has just claimed victory at the Highland Fling and the Keswick Mountain Festival 50, smashing bot course records in the process. It will be interesting to see how he performs in LSU this weekend. Admittedly KMF is graded “hard” but the Highland Fling is much less technical than what he can expect on Saturday.

Ally Beaven

An up-and-coming UK fell-runner is not new to UK Skyrunning either. He placed 4th in the Mourne Skyline in Ireland last year and if he has one advantage it is his age.

James Harris

Is a little bit of a dark horse? Very much under the radar, James is a local fell-runner who placed 10th in the Wasdale Horseshoe Fell Race this year. According to Charlie, James is “very strong and vey fit”.

Tomasso Migliuolo

Is another dark horse and relatively unknown and new to Skyrunning? However, he has put all his chances on his side attending training camps and reccying the LSU course with RD Charles Sproson.

Lawrence Eccles

Is an experienced and hardened fell-runner and navigator who has proven himself over gnarly, challenging technical terrain so the LSU is going to suit him to a T. Although navigation skills are utterly useless in a Skyrunning event as the course is marked to Skyrunning standards, Lawrence still has an advantage in that he has trained and raced extensively on this type of terrain. He placed 10th in The Dragon’s Back Race™, one of the UK’S most technical and toughest multi-stage navigation races. The endurance is there, but will Lawrence have the speed to keep up with his contenders in what promises to be a fast race?

Thomas Paris

Is a Raidlight-sponsored athlete from France, who has mainly taken part in French trail races like the Trail Verbier St Bernard (60km), Transju Trail (72km), Sur les Traces des Ducs de Savoie (TDS – UTMB®) which he completed in 16 hours. He has relatively little experience of UK fell-running or technical terrain in the Lake District, which is very different from what can be expected in France.

And last but not least…

Aleks Kasheffi

Born to run barefoot runner, who won’t be running the LSU barefoot as it is strictly against official race regulations. However, keep tuned as Aleks will be running in sandals after having obtained the green light and blessing from RD Charles Sproson. It is worth noting that Aleks attempted a Bob Graham Round in sandals.

FEMALE CONTENDERS

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Sarah Ridgway

LSU race favorite in the ladies field is without a doubt Sarah Ridgeway. She is the course record holder and defending ladies champion for this second edition and she won’t let a second victory slip through her fingers. Sarah has everything going for her right now. She is at peak fitness level and has been very consistent and very focused in her pre-race training and build-up. Sarah is an experienced UK sky runner and will be looking to place 1st on the podium after having missed her 8:30 objective in the V3K this year due to a virus. This Welsh runner based in Snowdonia, placed third in the grueling and gnarly Glencoe Skyline last year behind Emilie Forsberg and Jasmin Paris in a time of 9:21:44.

Carol Morgan

Definitely a podium contender, Carol completed the Lakeland 100 in 2015 in a smashing time of 25:47. She has the stamina and pace to play well in LSU.

Sophie Grant

A contender Sarah will need to look out for as she placed 2nd in the 50km Keswick Mountain Festival Ultra this year and finished 4th in the Hoka Highland Fling in a time of 8:15:04.

Katie Boden

Placed 2nd in the V3K this year so definitely a podium contender on Saturday.

Kerstin Rosenqvist

Is a regular at the Ourea events like the Great Lakeland 3Day, so another experienced navigator and fell-runner. However, will she be able to keep the pace in a single-day event with very competitive local talent who know the course well?

Rachel Campbell

Placed 4th in the 50km Keswick Mountain Festival

The countdown to the “gnarly, hard-core, awesome and extreme” LSU begins …Here’s wishing all the Skyrunners the best of luck on Saturday. And who knows if the weather holds, maybe the 2015 CR will be broken on 23 July!

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