Adverse weather fails to dampen thrilling World Trophy
|Andrea Mayr (AUT) Photo W.stinn
|Jonathan Wyatt. Photo W.Stinn
Sierre/ Crans-Montana (Valais - Switzerland) and the Swiss Athletic Federation staged a record breaking Trophy event on Sunday 14th September. More men and women and countries (38) than ever before. Sierre was dry but overcast. Crans-Montana, 1000m higher, was shrouded in thick mist and drizzle. This did not detract from some fine performances.........
Jonathan Wyatt once again proved himself the supreme mountain runner as he recorded his sixth World title, winning in a time of 55.03 for the 12km 1046m climb course. In the fast early stages the Ugandans and Turkish runners set the pace and Jonathan hung on in about 8th position. As the course steepened he started to gain positions. With 2km to go Martin Toroitich (UGA) had a 50m lead. The course became steeper and with 500m to go Jonathan had caught Totoitich and European Champion, Ahmet Arslan. The last stage became a sprint with Jonathan hanging on to win from the Ugandan by just 12 seconds. It was noteworthy that the podium was occupied from athletes from three continents, Australasia, Africa and Europe. As expected the Italian men recorded yet another victory, with host country Switzerland second and USA third.
The womens race proved a great consolation prize for Andrea Mayr (AUT) who had just missed out on Olympic selection for the steeplechase for Austria. She destroyed a talented field in winning with a 59 second margin over Renate Rungger (ITA). There was a desperate sprint for the bronze medal with Elisa Desco(ITA)l, edging out Olympian Kirsten Otterbu (NOR) by 0.2 seconds. Kirsten still received a gold medal as she led the Norwegian team to victory over Switzerland by just one point.
Norway confirmed their rise in the mountain running firmament as their junior men, placed second team,was led home by gold medalist Sindre Buraas. The strong Turkish junior team, European champions, took the gold medal position again.
England enjoyed welcome success in the junior womens race as young Laura Park had a convincing win over Turkeys Esra Gullu. With Heather Timmins in 7th position England also took the team gold.
Right - Laura Park (England) Photo Pete Hartley
Below- Sindre Buraas (NOR) Photo Pete Hartley
This was the last occasion on which we will see England in the competition since IAAF have granted the 25th event in 2009 the official title of World Mountain Running Championships. As a result the four UK teams with be replaced by a Great Britain & Northern Ireland team. The change was approved by the WMRA congress by 32 votes in favour, two abstensions and non against.
Leading Results: (click results on our web page for full list)
1 J.Wyatt (NZL) 55.03
2 M Toroitich (UGA) 55.16
3 A.Arslan (TUR) 55.26
4. B. Dematteis (ITA) 55.48
5. R. Fontaine (FRA) 55.52
6. J. J. Vargas (COL) 56.30
Team: 1. Italy 43, 2. Switzerland 59. 3. USA 76
- 1. A. Mayr (AUT) 43.57
- 2. R. Rungger (ITA) 44.57
- 3. E. Desco (ITA) 45.29
- 4. K. Otterbu (NOR) 45.29.02
- 5. M. Strahl (SUI) 45.43
- 6. A. Haakenstad Everten (NOR) 46.02
Team: 1. Norway 24. 2. Switzerland 25. 3. Italy 33.
- 1. S. Buraas (NOR) 42.12
- 2. R. Sterni (ITA) 42.25
- 3. M. Savaser (TUR) 42.43
Team: 1. Turkey 13. 2. Norway 20. 3. Italy 35
- 1. L. Park (ENG) 22.34
- 2. E. Gullu (TUR) 23.07
- 3. A. Dunne(USA) 23.33
Team: 1. England 8. 2. Turkey 11. 3. Switzerland 22.