It was a glorious finish to the 2017 Migu Run Skyrunner® World Series season in Italy, Saturday, October 14, at the Limone SkyRace®. Italy’s Marco De Gasperi realised his dream of taking the Sky Classic title after 24 years of top level competition. Spain’s Sheila Avilés clinched the women’s title after just two years on the circuit.
The race also determined the Overall ranking champions based on at least one race per category (Classic, Extreme, Ultra). They are Briton Jonathan Albon, who mathematically won at the Series’ last race and Spaniard Maite Maiora, with a very tight margin of just 0.8 points over Dutch woman Ragna Debats.
Maiora commented, “When I started the season in Zegama I never thought of winning any title. I just wanted to run good races but during the season, I saw it was possible to win the Overall too,” she said. “Today the race was very hard for me but I did everything to make it happen. Thanks to all the people, sponsors and race organisers that have made its possible. I want to thank especially Iosu. He is always with me.”
Winners of the Limone SkyRace® were De Gasperi and Tove Alexandersson from Sweden. Second man was Spaniard Jan Margarit who led most of the race with De Gasperi hot on his heels. On the final downhill, Margarit fell and De Gasperi went on to win in 3h07’32” followed by Margarit just 26” behind. Stephan Knopf was third in 3h10’51”.
“Going into the race I wouldn’t have bet a cent on my win,” said De Gasperi. “Catching up with Jan was a surprise as he was very fast on the ascent where I had a few tough moments. Then, on the last descent, he fell which clearly compromised his race. Obviously races end at the finish line but it was amazing running with him. I’ve said many times he’s already a champion and in the future, he’ll be even better!”
De Gasperi won the race in 2012, although on a shorter, less technical course which is now 29 km long with 2,500m vertical climb – designed to be even more challenging and technically demanding.
Second woman was Germany’s Michelle Maier in 3h43’03” and Ragna Debats, third, in 3h45’39”.
The weekend’s events included the Grèste de la Mughéra Vertical Kilometer® valid for the Vertical Kilometer® World Circuit also valid as the final of the Skyrunning European Championships. They attracted overall more than 1,000 athletes from 32 countries who gathered in the popular tourist resort of Limone on Lake Garda.
Migu Run Skyrunner® World Series awarded an End of Season Bonus Pool amounting to € 60,000 across the three categories and the Overall rankings.
The Sky Classic title is based on the five best results out of eleven with an extra 20% bonus points awarded here.
Twenty-two races in 19 venues across three continents saw a selection of the best skyrunning races with the best runners, great champions and rising stars – an enthralling season filled with emotion… and not without adventure.
A big thanks go to all the runners that took part, the teams, the race organisers and to our partners for their support with whom there will always be: Less cloud. More Sky!
Limone SkyRace® results
- Marco De Gasperi (ITA) – 3h07’32”
- Jan Margarit (ESP) – 3h07’58”
- Stephan Knopf (GER) – 3h10’51”
- Oriol Cardona (ESP) -3h13’18”
- Petter Engdahl (SWE) – 3h14’56”
- Tove Alexandersson (SWE) – 3h31’11”
- Michelle Maier (GER) – 3h43’03”
- Ragna Debats (NED) – 3h45’39”
- Holly Page (GBR) – 3h51’46”
- Sheila Avilés (ESP) – 3h54’20”