ATRA Member Salomon Announces Format Change For 2020 Golden Trail World Series

Announcement from American Trail Running Association (ATRA) corporate member Salomon Running.

The Golden Trail World Series (GTWS), now in its third year of existence, announced tentative plans for an altered 2020 race format. Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, sports competitions and leagues around the world have been forced to adapt and that has also been the case with the top trail running races that make up the GTWS. Many have been cancelled for 2020 or moved to a date later in the year.

For this reason, an altered GTWS format has been created with the hope that we can end the season on a positive note for the trail running community. The organizers are fully aware that these plans are tentative and that health concerns may force the cancellation of these new plans, but are excited to share a new format that adjusts to these challenging times.

Because it is not currently possible to organize a series with a mandatory number of races or gather elite international runners at each race, the new plan calls for a meeting of the top trail runners in the world at one single four-day competition late this year to crown the male and female Golden Trail World Champions of 2020.

A unique event for an unprecedented year: The Golden Trail World Championship

The Golden Trail World Championship will be organized by Azores Trail Run®️ and will take place on Faial and Pico islands in the Azores from the 29 October 2020 – 1 November 2020. It is a 4-day stage race:

  • STAGE 1 – 26KM with 1,069 meters of vertical gain and 1,098 meters of descent
  • STAGE 2 – 32KM with 1,343 meters of vertical gain and 1,310 meters of descent
  • STAGE 3 – 32KM with 2,363 meters of vertical gain and 1,137 meters of descent
  • STAGE 4 – 36KM with 1,453 meters of vertical gain and 1,518 meters of descent

At the end of the four days competition, an overall ranking will be established and the Golden Trail World Champions will be the male and female with the lowest cumulated time across all of the stages.


A total amount of €100,000 will be claimed over 4 days, with prize money for the final overall rankings and also per stage and per specialty.


Overall Rankings:

  • Golden Trail World Champions: €6,500
  • 2nd to 5th: €5,000
  • 6th to 10th: €2,500
  • GT Climber Champions: €1,000
  • GT Downhiller Champions: €1,000
  • GT Sprinter Champions: €1,000

Daily Rankings (per stage)

  • Stage winners: €500
  • Stage Best climbers: €500
  • Stage Best downhillers: €500
  • Stage Best sprinters: €500

Runners will be able to win golden tickets in more than 20 different countries. The number of golden tickets, as well as the terms and conditions for obtaining them, will be announced later in June. The golden tickets will give the runners a full invitation with flights/accommodation/meals. However, anyone can participate in the final and compete for the GTWC title if they would like to attend on their own.

The TOP 10 GTWS 2019, and the runners who won their tickets for the GTWS 2020 on one of the GTNS 2019, get a golden ticket for the GTWC 2020 without having to win one on any of the golden races

*All of these plans are based on the condition that the COVID-19 pandemic stopped its expansion and that governments authorize trail running races from September and travel abroad from October.

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Editor’s Note: Be safe as we continue to navigate the uncertainty around the COVID-19 pandemic. Please continue to follow the recommendations and updates from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), including proper hygiene practices. Also consider reading iRunFar’s COVID-19: A Trail Running and Ultrarunning Community Guide.