As Italy prepares to roll out the red carpet for skyrunning royalty, a truly international field prepares to take on the rough and rugged, ZacUP Skyrace®. The 13th race of the Migu Run Skyrunner® World Series guarantees a spectacular and above all emotional event as organisers pay tribute to fallen members of committee by promising to keep passion and spirit of race alive.
This Sunday, 15th September, 450 skyrunners including 60 elites, of over 22 nationalities will gather in the Italian town of Pasturo, for the high-level and international, ZacUP Skyrace®. The 27.5 km course with 2,650m vertical gain, takes runners on a technical journey from Pasturo to the summit of Northern Grigna (2,410m), offering one of the most evocative panoramic views of the alps.
A Race With Heart, Passion and Joy
Although a newcomer to the circuit, ZacUP Skyrace® was created in 2013, in memory of Andrea Zaccagni, a key member of the organization committee who died in 2012 during an ascent to the Matterhorn. Following the tragic deaths of two more fallen members of Team Pasturo, Davide and Gabriele – Gabriele also being one of the creators of ZacUP Skyrace® – this year, the race will have even more heart, passion and joy as organizers keep their promise to deliver a truly fantastic event.
“ZacUP was born in memory of my brother Andrea who died in 2012 during the climb to the Matterhorn from the Swiss side. From a technical point of view, it is a complete Skyrace, a race that goes to the peak over grasslands and rocky terrain where hands and fixed chains are required to climb.” Said Alberto Zaccagnio, race director and brother of Andrea Zaccagni.“To be a Migu Run Skyrunner World Series race is a dream come true, but first of all a promise that has been kept. I promised it to my brother and I promised it to the members of the organising committee and to the people of Pasturo. It’s the best gift the country could give. The passion of ZacUP has spread and everyone now feels part of it.”
Italy’s Finest Join International Field
With just three races remaining before the Migu Run Skyrunner® World Series grand finale in Limone Sul Garda on October 19th ,success at ZacUp® Skyrace is crucial in order to obtain some of the last remaining points towards the overall ranking.
Italy’s finest are amongst the international lineup, including three-time winner and local hero, Daniel Antonioli, who has become the new world series superstar following an impressive win at the last SuperSky Race, the Matterhorn Ultraks «EXTREME». His fellow Italian, Cristian Minoggio, has also had his taste of success this season with a first-place finish at Royal Ultra SkyMarathon Gran Paradiso. It’s looking likely to be a fierce face-off between the two who will also be up against a strong field of Spaniards including Zaid Ait Malek, Manuel Anguita and Eric Moya. Russia’s Evgeny Markov, who placed second at Comapedrosa Skyrace, is also a serious contender for the title and will certainly be the one to beat on the downhill.
Avilés Vs. Åström…Again!
The current number one of the overall ranking, Sheila Avilés, will again, face her fiercest rival, the new queen of technical skyrunning, Johanna Åström. Since their last encounter, a nail-biting battle at BUFF® Epic Trail, which saw Avilés claim the victory, Åström has gone from strength-to-strength, winning both Tromsø Skyrace and the Matterhorn Ultraks «EXTREME». The question is, who will stand atop of the podium this Sunday?
“I know it will be a good race this weekend because the level is high. I’m not afraid to compete against Johanna, I’m actually looking forward to it because I know she’s a strong runner. ZacUP is an important race for me and I’m more motivated than ever at this stage of the series. Although I know that I’m at the top of the overall ranking, I want to arrive at the final in Limone with as many points as possible, therefore, I will be aiming for the podium this weekend for sure.” Said Avilés.
Italy’s Elisa Desco, who holds the course record for this race and sits third in the overall ranking, will also be competing for the victory as well as Denisa Dragomir of Romania, who placed third at the Matterhorn Ultraks «EXTREME», Anne-Lise Rousset of France and Russia’s Elena Rukhlyada – just to name a few.
The 13th race of the Migu Run Skyrunner® World Series will kick off on Sunday 15th September at 8:30 am. Tune in to the official Skyrunning Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages for the latest updates and results.