CCC have been in the back of my mind for over two years and everything since has lead up to this race from Courmayeur to Chamonix during UTMB Week.
I have stayed in Chamonix in almost 4 months with some of my Adidas TERREX team mates with UTMB as the main focus. We have been training together on the course and on the trails around Mont Blanc, acclimatising to the altitude and heat and preparing the body to run 100km with 6100m +- vertical.
Leading up to the race my body felt ok and training was going according to plan. I had some really good training sessions with Jonathan Albon and also Kilian Jornet which gave my a lot of confident and inspiration. But I was very nervous and anxious before the race. Mostly for the distance but of course also about the race and how it was going to go. But I knew that all the training was done and as soon as the gun goes, all the nervously would go away.
The start was 0900 in Courmayeur and I was making sure to drink early on and not to push too hard in the first climb. I followed Hayden Hawks and Andreas Reiterer the first climb and we were all pretty much together to the summit before Refuge Bertone. Then me Andreas ran together on the flat section to Arnovaz before we started the climb to Col de Ferret. I pushed a little bit in the climb, using my poles a lot and managed to get a gap. At the same time, some rain and thunder came in over the mountains and cooled us down. I refilled my bottles in some streams to stayed hydrated and generally just enjoyed to be out in the mountains.
Down to La Fouly I kept an even pace, not pushing too much to save the legs for the remaining of the race. I heard that Jon Albon was moving up in the field and getting closer in the decent before we headed up to Champed Lac.
When arriving to Champed Lac, Charlotte was there to crew me and I changed my bottles, ate some Maurten bar and reseted the mind for the reminding 44km. I heard that I had 2 min to Jon which was not at all a comfortable gap. In the big climb to Plan de l’Au I started to struggle a bit and could definetly feel the pressure and some tiredness.
I took 2 Maurten Caffeine gels and Luckily the tiredness didn't last for long. So going down to Trient, I heard that I had extended the gap to 6 min and that gave me a lot of hope and motivation. Holly Page was now waiting at the crew station and we changed the bottles before going to Trient. This section was my favourite part of the full course, I felt like I was starting the race from start and I was suddenly full of new energy. My team mates had spread out up the climb to sheer me on and that gave me so much energy. In Vallorcine I heard that I had 10 minutes gap to Jon and I I realised that I could win this if I just stayed focused and keeping the same pace
In Vallorcine, I changed my socks, refilled bottles with Redbull and Maurten 320 before the climb to Tete aux Vents, Flegere and Chamonix. The last climb from Col du Montet felt easy but the technical flat stretch from Tet aux Vents was nerve-racking and hard. I was not worried to blow up, but to make a misstake or fall. The though of someone catching up was also in the back of my mind. At flegere, I could not see anyone behind me with was a big relieve. I charge down the last decent, taking it safe, still drinking and eating and started to hear the nice from the center of Chamonix. People had hiked up to the climb and the a big part of the team was in the bottom of the climb.
The last stretch into Chamonix was an experience I can not describe with words. I just want to thank everyone who was cheering on the trails or following the race online, to the UTMB organization and all the volunteers. But most of all to the Adidas TERREX team for all the support leading up to CCC. To Charlotte, Robert and Holly and Toni McCann for your support during the race and of course my dad who traveled to Chamonix to follow this race.
Congrats to Jonathan Albon for also breaking the coursre record and Andreas Reiterer. Very happy to share the podium with these great athletes.
I also want to congratulate my Team mate Abby Hall who finish 3rd in the woman's race, Remigio Human 12th, Taylor Nowlin 9th, Stephen Kersh 16th, Yngvild Kaspersen 22nd.
Adidas TERREX prototypes Shoes
TERREX Agravic Pro Tee
TERREX Agravic Pro Trail Running Shorts
TERREX Trail Running Vest
Archmax Pose quiver Prototype
Leki Trail running poles
UTMB Basic mandatory equipment
2x Petzl Actic + 2 spare batteries
Phone with working SIM-Card
TERREX Rain Proof Jacket and Pants
1500ml Water container
1m Self adhering g elastic Bandage
16 Maurten Gels
6 Maurten 320
4 Maurten 160
2 Maurten Solid Bars
56 Gummy Bears
General strategy: 1 gel every 45min, 60g Maurten Sportdrink/hour, 1 Bar every 3,5 hour
Photos: Ian Corrless and Raphael Weber