Saturday, October 13, 2012

The 26th Mount Kinabalu International Climbathon - The Adventure Series 2012

“The World's Toughest Mountain Race” is set to take place in Kundasang on the 14th of October. This year the race will follow a new route.

It will be flagged off from Kinabalu Park headquarters and, instead of using the trail from Kinabalu Park headquarters to the peak of Mount Kinabalu and back down again, runners will go half way up the Mountain to Layang-layang station which is 2760.3 m above sea level, and head down to Mesilau Nature Resort before running towards the finish line in Kundasang township.

The new 23 km course is 2 km longer than the previous route. It will take the runners through the dense forest, villages and the Mount Kinabalu Golf Course at Masilau before completing the grueling race. The organisers maintain that the new route will allow for a larger number of participants and has the added advantage of showing the beautiful landscape around the Mesilau Nature Resort and the mountain golf course and the temperate vegetable growing villages of Kundasang.

Runners from different parts of the globe will be coming to take on the new challenging route and push their endurance to the limit. In the men’s category, top mountain runner and former Climbathon champion, Kilian Jornet from Spain is returning to do it again.

Jornet holds the number one ranking in the Skyrunning World series which is organized by the International Skyrunning Federation (ISF). Fellow Spaniard and top competitor, Luis Alberto Hernando, who finished 3rd in last year‘s Climbathon, will also be joining Jornet in their pursuit of the grand prize. Hernando is ranked 3rd in the current Skyrunner World Series.

Japanese runner, Miyahara Toru and Nepalese Aite Tamang, current champ of the 100km trail race on Annapurna Mountain, will also be competing. Toru finished 2nd in the 2009 Climbathon race. Malaysian top runner from Ranau, Safrey Sumping, has been training hard in preparation for the Climbathon. He is expected to give the other participants a run for their money.