As already mentioned in this post, Columbia invited our Keller Sports Pros Thomas and André to view the Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc live and get involved in the event. One day, they just watched the race, the next, they were lacing up their trail running shoes. As part of a group of runners, they ran alongside the route set out for UTMB participants. The route took them up a path that was very steep in parts, leading up the Grand Col Ferret, 2525 metres high. For the run, Columbia kitted the two runners out with brand new products, so they could experience their great quality first-hand.
The effort that the trail runners put into this competition was admirable. Covering a distance of 167.5 k, climbing a total of 10,000 metres in altitude and even doing some of it in heavy rain. The winner was Frenchman François D'Haene, completing the trek in 19:01:54 hours. D'Haene held up an incredible average speed of 8.8 km/h - taking into account the steep climbs, that’s extremely fast. The fastest woman was Núria Picas, from Spain, reaching the finish line after 25:46:43 hours.
Overall, Thomas and André thought that the Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc was “an amazing event with an incredible panorama”. Above all, it was the fact that the UTMB was “exciting to the very end” that surprised them both. Apart from that, they also enjoyed the good camaraderie between the participants of the UTMB 2017. Every single runner was cheered at the finish line and the last one to arrive was welcomed and congratulated by the winner. It was a beautiful and very impressive race that brought out the sporting spirit in many. Thanks, Columbia, for the invitation!