Northern Ireland runners take on UTMB races

Over the weekend, a number of Northern Ireland runners have taken part in events at the notoriously difficult Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc festival in Chamonix, France.The action commenced on Wednesday (28th August 2013) when Ivan Sadlier (Unattached) completed the TDS (Sur les Traces des Ducs de Savoie), an 119km race with 7,250m of ascending.  Ivan completed the course in 23:08:08 (133rd place).  The race was won by Arnaud Julia Bonmatti (Team BUFF) in 15:09:59.Both the main UTMB and the CCC (Courmayeur-Champex-Chamonix) races started on Friday 30th August 2013, and due to the extreme nature of both, went through the night into Saturday 31st August 2013.  The 101km (including 6,100m of ascending) CCC participants were first to finish, with Dominic McInearny (Murlough AC) leading the NI contingent home in 20:19:42 (303rd place).  Denise Mathers (Newry City Runners) produced arguably the performance of her life to finish in a brilliant 29th place in the ladies race, crossing the line in 20:38:38. BARF’s Jackie Toal missed a sub 24hr finish by an agonising eleven seconds, finishing in 24:00:11 (92nd place lady), while her BARF club mate Donal O’Kane ran 25:08:39 (964th place).  The men’s race was won by Jordi Bes (Ski Girona Nobes) in 11:23:01, while Caroline Chaverot (Team Kikouro) took the ladies title in 14:12:00.

In the even more gruelling UTMB main event, which saw competitors cover 168km (with 9,600m of ascending), Dale Mathers (Newry City Runners) was the first local to cross the line; Dale finished in 34:22:40 (300th place), with East Antrim Harriers’ Billy Reed (34:28:41) following in 301st place.  BARF’s Brian Linton was the next familiar face home in 40:35:31 (806th place).  The race was won by Xavier Thevenord (Asics) in 20:34:57, with Rory Bosio (North Face) winning the ladies equivalent in 22:37:26.  Special mention must also go to Ireland International Eoin Keith, a regular competitor in Northern Ireland and recent winner of the 26extreme Mourne Way Ultra and Energia 24hr Race; Eoin finished in an outstanding 18th place, recording 24:44:12.

Full Results:  UTMB Festival 2013 Results – Please Note: The main UTMB race is still ongoing and this summary will be altered according to reflect any further NI competitors.  We are aware of several other NI runners taking part (but are having difficulty getting information for them).  Please get in touch if you know someone who was taking part in any of the above races.

Many Thanks to Ryan Maxwell for the report

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