2022 World Mountain & Trail Running Championships – U.S. Team Selection

Approved by the USATF MUT Executive Committee on January 24, 2022.

The inaugural World Mountain & Trail Running Championships (WMTRC) is scheduled for November 4-6, 2022 in Chiang Mai, Thailand. This new biennial event is organized by the World Mountain Running Association (WMRA), the International Association of Ultrarunners (IAU) and the International Trail Running Association (ITRA), with support from World Athletics.

This event replaces the World Mountain Running Championship (1985-2019), World Long Distance Mountain Running Championship (2004-2019) and Trail World Championship (2007-2019). These championships have been discontinued.

WMTRC Race Schedule

  • Friday, November 4 – 10:15 am – VERTICAL MOUNTAIN (8.5 km, 1050 meters vertical) race.
  • Saturday, November 5 – 6:30 am – 80 km TRAIL (5400 meters vertical) race.
  • Saturday, November 5 – 7:30 am – 40 km TRAIL (2900 meters vertical) race.
  • Sunday, November 6 – 8:30 am – 11.2 km CLASSIC MOUNTAIN (550 meters vertical) up and down races (6.5 km, 275 meters vertical for U20).

This championship is open to all World Athletics member federations. MOUNTAIN races are up to 4 athletes per country, per gender to start, 3 to score. Individual and team titles will be awarded (team title based on cumulative position). TRAIL races are up to 6 athletes per country, per gender to start, 3 to score. Individual and team titles will be awarded (team title based on cumulative time). With these event allocations the maximum possible team size per country is 48 athletes.

Thailand Trail and Mountain Running

Course Maps

World Championship course maps with elevation profiles and downloadable GPS files can be found at runningcoach.me.

U.S. Team Selection

The United States plans to field a team of 42 athletes with the following event allocations:

VERTICAL MOUNTAIN – 3 men & 3 women
40 km TRAIL race – 5 men & 5 women
80 km TRAIL race – 5 men & 5 women
CLASSIC MOUNTAIN race – 4 men & 4 women
U20 CLASSIC MOUNTAIN race – 4 men & 4 women

How To Qualify

VERTICAL MOUNTAIN Team

  • A Standard * – n/a
  • B Standard ** – Top man / woman at the 2022 USATF Vertical Mountain Running Championships / Loon Mountain Race on July 10 in Lincoln, New Hampshire. Top man / woman at the 2022 Broken Arrow Skyrace VK on June 17 in Olympic Valley, California.
  • C Standard *** – Remaining team members will be selected based on running resumes with consideration given to top results at USATF Championships. Top 10 finishers from the 2022 USATF Mountain Running Championships who do not qualify for the world championship CLASSIC MOUNTAIN race will automatically have their resumes submitted for consideration. The selection committee will consider athletes’ percentage back from the winning time in any races listed on resumes submitted.

40 km TRAIL Team

  • A Standard – 2019 World Long Distance Mountain Running Champion Jim Walmsley earns an automatic team spot.
  • B Standard – Top man / woman at the 2022 Breakneck Point Trail Marathon on April 30 in Beacon, NY. [Max King and Michelle Merlis]. Top man / woman at the 2022 Pikes Peak Marathon on September 18 in Manitou Springs, Colorado.
  • C Standard – Remaining team members will be selected based on running resumes with consideration given to top results at USATF Championships. The selection committee will consider athletes’ percentage back from the winning time in any races listed on resumes submitted.

80 km TRAIL Team

  • A Standard – n/a
  • B Standard – Top 2 men / women at the 2022 Broken Arrow Skyrace 52K on June 18 in Olympic Valley, California. The 2022 USATF 50K Trail Championships has been cancelled.
  • C Standard – Remaining team members will be selected based on running resumes with consideration given to top results at USATF Championships. The selection committee will consider athletes’ percentage back from the winning time in any races listed on resumes submitted.

CLASSIC MOUNTAIN Team

  • A Standard – 2019 World Mountain Running Champions Grayson Murphy and Joseph Gray earn automatic team spots.
  • B Standard – Top 3 at the 2022 USATF Mountain Running Championships / Whiteface Sky Race on July 2 at Whiteface Mountain, New York. Top 4 if Grayson Murphy or Joseph Gray finish in the top 3, or if they decline their spots.
  • C Standard – If any of the top 4 finishers decline their spots, additional team members will be selected by going down the finisher list in order.

U20 CLASSIC MOUNTAIN Team

  • A Standard – n/a
  • B Standard – n/a
  • C Standard – Athletes ages 16-19 (before December 31, 2022) are eligible to submit a resume (via this Google Form) and coaches letter of recommendation for consideration. U20 men should have a 16:45 or better 5 km road or XC time and U20 women should have a time of 19:30 or better. Equivalent times from alternate race distances will be considered. In addition U20 must supply a letter of recommendation from a parent/guardian or coach.

Selection Timeline

Qualifying Performance Window – Races between January 1, 2021 to September 18, 2022
Athlete Resumes Due – No later than September 19, 2022
Team Selected – No later than September 25, 2022
Team Announced – September 30, 2022.
No athlete substitutions after October 7, 2022.

Additional Information

This team is funded by USA Track & Field and the American Trail Running Association.

Team uniforms will be provided by USATF. If an athlete qualifies for the team but can’t make the trip due to injury or any other circumstance, the uniform must be returned to USATF.

All athletes must be current USATF members, U.S. citizens and have a passport valid through May 15, 2023.

Team members will receive funding from USA Track & Field and the American Trail Running Association with the reimbursement amount TBA. While the exact cost of sending a team to this championship is unknown at the time of this writing, it is the intention of the USATF MUT Council to make this a fully funded team for all athletes and staff (except juniors).

Questions or resumes should be sent to Richard Bolt, richardbolt@trailrunner.com and Meghan Canfield, coachmeghancanfield@gmail.com. Athletes who earn spots at the 2022 USATF Mountain Running Championships must confirm their acceptance of a team spot not later than September 19, 2022.

Questions about the U20 (formerly junior) MOUNTAIN team can be emailed to Paul Kirsch, pkirsch2@gmail.com. U20 athletes can fill out the online application form at: https://forms.gle/1eK7JVUSfQGh3QX19

USATF MUT selection committee members are Richard Bolt, Max King, Meghan Canfield, Nancy Hobbs and Jason Bryant. For the U20 MOUNTAIN team, Paul Kirsch, Anita Ortiz, Max King, Eric Blake and Jason Bryant.

* The A Standard is based on past world championship results.
** The B Standard is based on USATF championship and/or U.S. selection race results.
*** The C Standard is based on evaluation of athlete resumes by the USATF MUT selection committee.

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