Mountain Running World Cup Moves To The Czech Republic

Announcement from the World Mountain Running Association (WMRA). The American Trail Running Association is a WMRA media partner and will be providing coverage of all sixteen events in the 2021 Mountain Running World Cup. ATRA founder Nancy Hobbs is a member of the WMRA Council. Photos: WMRA.

The 22nd annual Mountain Running World Cup for the first time includes the challenging Krkonossky Half Marathon. Taking place in Janské Lázně in the Czech Republic on Sunday August 15th, this 13 mile mountain running race features 3300 feet of elevation gain and is stage six in the 2021 World Cup. No stranger to high profile events, Janské Lázně hosted the 2013 World Masters Mountain Running Championships which used many of the same trails as this weekend’s race.

Janské Lázně is a world-renowned spa town, which is also one of the best ski resorts in the Czech Republic. It’s a quiet town with a rich history, located at the foot of Černá Hora (The Black Mountain, 4261 feet above sea level). The town is connected to the top of the mountain by a cable railway and because of this and the ski-lifts and cross-country skiing tracks the town has become a top-level sports and recreation centre and a perfect base for trips into the highest Czech mountains, both for skiers in winter and for cyclists and hikers in summer.


This race bills itself as a half marathon which might make it seem like a pretty standard race, but it’s anything but. At 13.1 miles, with a total elevation gain and loss of 3300 feet, this event really packs a punch. The race starts in the centre of town (Colonnade Square), then proceeds to climb the mountain path across the top of Černá Hora Mountain to the small ski resort town of Pec Pod Sněžkou and then back down in a loop, finishing back at the square.

After five fantastic races in this year’s Mountain Running World Cup already, Krkonossky looks set to be another great race with a top flight elite field. Filimon Abraham (GER) has to be among the favorites in the men’s race, with a recent second place at Grossglockner Berglauf and a long string of World Cup podiums dating back several years. Charlotte Morgan (GBR) has already won at Tatra Race Run, came third at Tatra SkyMarathon and 10th at Grossglockner Berglauf, and could add to her great run of World Cup results here. Like Morgan, Mocja Koligar (SLO) is flying high in the WMRA’s World Mountain Running Ranking and has finished third at Piz Tri Vertikal and sixth at Grossglockner in the last few weeks.


Koligar’s compatriot Timotej Bečan (SLO) could also do very well in the men’s race. With a recent fourth place at Piz Tri Vertikal, seventh at Fletta Trail and sixth at Grossglockner. Other strong Slovenian athletes include Matic Plaznik and Gasper Bregar.

There will also be a strong group of runners from Kenya, including Joyce Muthoni Njeru, winner of Grossglockner and Fletta Trail, Geoffrey Gikuni Ndungu, who was fourth at Grossglockner and second at Fletta Trail, and Timothy Kimutai Kirui, third at Fletta Trail.

Raul Criado (ESP) had a good run at Tatra Race Run, but then a great run at Tatra SkyMarathon to finish in third place. He could be one to watch in the Czech Mountains. Lucie Maršánová (CZE) has had two top ten finishes in the World Cup so far, and as a ‘local’ she should get great support.

Sarah McCormack (IRL), the reigning World Cup champion from 2019, is on the start list and fans hope to see her in action. She finished fourth in Fletta Trail, so is in form and will be one to watch here. Tímea Merenyi (HUN) has had three strong results in the World Cup so far this year, and is also expected to do well.

There may be changes to the start list due to COVID-19 travel restrictions. Sunday’s race start takes place at 9:00 AM CET. More information about the event can be found on the race website.


About the WMRA Mountain Running World Cup:
Races take place between June 2021 and October 2021 in 8 countries. There are 12 event locations and 16 races in 3 categories: short uphill; classic mountain race; long mountain race. Runners can take part in as many races as they want, and they get points for their finishing positions. Their best 7 results in the World Cup races count towards their final ranking. The points scoring format is cumulative. Finishing positions in a WMRA World Cup race range from 100 points for first to 1 point for 30th. There are separate competitions for men and women and athletes must compete in at least two races in order to be considered in the final rankings. See full calendar for World Cup races at:

The current, reigning World Cup champions are Sarah McCormack and Andrew Douglas.

About the World Mountain Running Association (WMRA):
Formed in 1984, we are the global governing body for mountain running and we have the goal of promoting mountain running for all ages and abilities. As well as the World Cup we organize Masters, U18 and regional championships and this year we will work in partnership with the World Athletics, International Trail Running Association (ITRA) and the International Association of Ultrarunners IAU to deliver the first World Mountain and Trail Running Championships in Thailand. More information at:

Tags: ,