Al’s Mont Blanc Ultratrail ’07 – 102miles, 8900m ascent, in under 24hrs..

THE RESULT: 8th place in 23hr 52min, for 102 miles and 8900m of ascent…Ouch! 

Right, well it’s finally over – 2200 starters and a record 1457 finishers.  At the moment, I think I actually enjoyed the training more than the event itself - but I’m sure that’ll change.. Very happy indeed with the result – I was aiming for top 10 or sub 24 and managed both – though I had to really leg it down from Argentiere to Chamonix!  The field this year was very strong indeed (see press release) with all the top Europeans and Americans too, plus Dawa Sherpa from Nepal and well known ultrarunners from Japan, Argentina, South Africa etc all coming across for the race.

Half an hour before the start – ‘Is this really a good idea?’

In terms of how it went – I definitely went off too fast, but realised in time and started ignoring other people and running at my own pace for the rest of the race - which worked well, as I’d slipped down to 13th but then started picking up again from Champex, as people ahead dropped out or began running out of steam in the latter stages.  I’d hurt my knee at work 10 days before, which was causing quite a few problems - but nothing a couple of Neurofen wouldn’t sort out for the final couple of descents..

After 96 miles, passing through Argentiere - Just 1hr to reach Chamonix

From the Col de Montets, it was obvious that a big effort was going to be required to go sub 24 - but I found a bit of energy left in the tanks and pushed on hard, catching the 9th and 8th placed runners on the way down to Chamonix and managing the fastest split time for this final leg of the race.  It certainly felt odd feeling so good and still running hard all the way into town after such a long way – but well worth it & great to see Sima and the kids looking excited at the finish line.  Many thanks to everyone out on the course supporting at all times of day and night & for all the texts and emails folk have sent too – very much appreciated indeed. Time now for a bit of eating and a few days holiday - we’re off bouldering and playing in the sand at Fontainbleau…

That didn’t hurt…much

4 thoughts on “Al’s Mont Blanc Ultratrail ’07 – 102miles, 8900m ascent, in under 24hrs..

  1. Congratulations! Really impressive result. Met a guy last year in the Chamoniard training for the event (doing a 3-day recce). That was the first I knew of the race, and I remember being gobsmacked at the distance, the amount of ascent and the times the front-runners achieved. Totally, mentally hard-core.

  2. Nice one Al! saw that there were no new postings here so figured the big event was iminent. what’s scary about it is recognising the the names of the places and knowing the amount of effort it takes to skin up these hills let alone run up them competitively. Many congratulations once again, enjoy your rest, and look forward to hearing the full story over a beer this winter.

  3. Well done, just which I had the fittness to be able to take full advantage. We will see how I am after the Mountain trial this weekend. That latest set of pics are well impresive by the way

  4. Congratulations Al, impressive result.
    Excellent Alps blog, keeps me day dreaming at work. Keep them coming. Cheers

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