The men’s and women’s course records go back to 2005 and 2009 respectively.
- 3 hours, 54 minutes, 18 seconds (Rob Jebb) – 2005.
- 4 hours, 38 minutes, 19 seconds (Emanuela Brizio) – 2009.
|Kilian Jornet||Emelie Forsberg|
|Luis Alberto Hernando||Stevie Kremer|
|Tom Owens||Nuria Picas|
Lets talk about the mens race. A sub 4 hour time is pretty much de rigueur for the win. In fact, every year from 2007 onwards, with the exception of 2009 its been won by a certain Kilian Jornet, in under 4 hours. And why not 2009, because KJ didn’t compete!!!
How many people can compete with this speed? Not too many by the look of past results. If you take a glance at the previous years results since 2007 a sub 4 hour time has only been achieved 12 times, 6 times by KJ, and the other notable and most recent being Luis Albert Hernando, Tom Owens, Zaid Ait Malek and Tadie Pivk.
There are not too many capable of breaking that 4 hour barrier so for me the race is down to Kilian, Luis Alberto and Tom.
For the last two years the mens race has been between Kilian and Luis Alberto with Kilian coming out on top twice with last years race right down to the wire by just 12 seconds and only off the course record by 20 seconds! Also worth noting is that the top 4 were under 4 hours in 2013.
Luis Hernando is just fresh from his victory at Transvulcania reversing the prior years race and beating Kilian. He looked in super form, can he carry he it through to Zegama or will Kilian regain his superiority and take out the win?
The women’s race is far more wide open and especially so due to recent performances by some of the leading contenders, Nuria Picas has raced and won hard in the last two months, Emelie Forsberg will no doubt be fresher due to her unlucky DNF due to injury at Transvulcania.
A sub 4hr 50mins has got to be the winning time. That’s still a long way off the course record of 4:38. There are not many out there that can break that 4:50 time barrier, in fact only 5 women from past results. The top 3 from 2013 all did so being Emelie Forsberg, Nuria Picas and Stevie Kremer but they would need to shave a cool 10 minutes off their times to come close to a course record. My money is on the same 1-2-3 as 2013 but with a slight change in the running order.
What else, but to wait in anticipation and excitement for a great race at Zegama! Let the racing begin………..
All images are copyright – Ian Campbell – Photography