Oregon’s Parke Chapin 4th at Youth Skyrunning World Championship VK Race

Announcement from the International Skyrunning Federation (ISF). Learn more about how the American Trail Running Association helps to support Skyrunning. Photo above: ISF.

Seven medals for Spain. Seven countries take medals. Seven Americans compete.

As predicted, Spain came out on top again and secured seven medals – four gold – of the 18 at stake in yesterday’s VERTICAL discipline at the fifth edition of the Youth Skyrunning World Championships in L’Aquila, Italy.

Seven countries took home medals – Spain, Norway, Czech Republic, Italy, Hungary, Andorra and Switzerland. The VERTICAL course was held for the fourth time at the Gran Sasso Vertical, a classical Vertical Kilometer® (VK) 2.3 miles long and a lung-busting 3,389 foot vertical climb, all the more challenging due to the high temperatures.

Bend, Oregon resident Parke Chapin (pictured above) just missed the podium by just 9 seconds, finishing 4th in 44’36” in the Youth B VERTICAL race. He was among seven American’s who competed in Friday’s short but steep VK race. About his race Chapin said, “At the start I just told myself I was going to hurt so bad I couldn’t walk, and that’s essentially what I did. Worked out in my favor!”

About the US team results in the VERTICAL races coaches Ryan and John Kerrigan said, “Given the COVID-19 situation we are happy enough to all be gathered here in Gran Sasso. These couple of strong results are icing on the cake!”

Spain’s Iu Net Puig and Jan Castillo, first and second in the Youth A race. Photo: ©Discover Abruzzo

Spain’s Daniel Osanz in the U23 category stole the show yet again, closing in 36’36”, but left his own course record of 34’52” intact. He’s the new star on the international stage too, after taking home his seventh medal at the Youth Championships, he clinched a silver medal for the VERTICAL at the recent 2020 Skyrunning World Championships in Spain.

“I’m very happy for this seventh medal at the Youth World Championships,” said Osanz. “Winning a gold on such a difficult day was hard. All eyes were on me and the heat didn’t help. The level was higher than ever but despite the tough competition, I did it!”

Norway is on the upward climb with a strong first presence in 2019 and today secured a gold, a silver, and a bronze. The U23 men’s race was very tight with newcomer Kasper Fosser from Norway second, just 13” short of the gold medal. Third was Switzerland’s Daniele Fontana, who beat fellow countryman Jonas Soldini by 12”.

Youth Skyrunning

Ida Waldal from Norway on her way to a gold medal. Photo: ©Discover Abruzzo

Czech runner Barbora Macurova dominated the women’s U23 race with more than 2’30” over the silver medallist Anna Guirado from Spain. The bronze went to Italian Martina Bilora.

Two of Spain’s four gold medals were earned in the Youth B category with Albert Perez, third overall, who beat Italian Lorenzo Rota Mayr and Norwegian Trym Dalset.

Spain’s Moana Kehres crushed the women’s race, winning with almost four minutes over Hungarian Luca Nementh, who clinched another silver medal in 2019. Luisa Valenti from Italy took the bronze medal.

The Youth A category now includes athletes aged 15-17, so a big applause to these young contenders. The biggest surprise came today from two rising stars: Iu Net Puig from Spain, fourth overall in a superb 39’17” (43” off the standing category record) and Ida Waldal from Norway who was the fastest woman overall in 47’07”, 3’35” off the women’s record.

“It was a really fun race, a nice course with a great atmosphere and many people cheering at the finish!” commented Waldal. “I did try my best but was a bit surprised how good the result was!”

Youth Skyrunning

Spain’s Moana Kehres looking towards a gold in the Youth B category. Photo: ©Discover Abruzzo

The VERTICAL discipline is valid for the Combined title together with the results of next Sunday’s SKY discipline. A total of 54 medals are at stake, distributed across three age group categories: Youth A (15-17), Youth B (18-20) and U23 (21-23). Individual medals will be awarded to the winners of each event.

After a day of rest and celebration of national colors at the opening ceremony, Saturday, Sunday will be the turn of the SKY discipline. While Youth A athletes will run on a reduced course, Youth B and U23 will test the tough full course of the Gran Sasso SkyRace®, 14 miles and 7,772 feet of vertical climbing. The records to beat on the full course belong to Spain’s Claudia Sabata in 3h04’28”and Switzerland’s Roberto Delorenzi, 2h23’16”.

The Youth Skyrunning World Championships, held annually since 2016, are aimed at developing and promoting the sport for the future and are supported in part by contributions from ISF members. The Championships are organized in collaboration with the Italian Skyrunning Federation (FISKY). World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) anti-doping tests will be carried out.

Youth Skyrunning

Andorran Max Palmitjavila on his way to a bronze in the Youth A category. Photo: ©Discover Abruzzo

Gran Sasso VERTICAL (VK) podium finishers + American results:

U23 Men
Daniel Osanz (ESP) 36’36”
Kasper Fosser (NOR) 36’49”
Daniele Fontana (SUI) 39’27”
26th Wendell Lorenzen (USA) 47’53”
31st Jakob Eggert (USA) 51’47”
37th William Haig (USA) 61’05”

U23 Women
Barbora Macurova (CZE) 47’21”
Anna Guirado (ESP) 50’00”
Martina Bilora (ITA) 52’10”

Youth B Men
Albert Perez (ESP) 38’35”
Lorenzo Rota Martir (ITA) 40’37”
Trym Dalset Lødøen (NOR) 42’06”

Youth B Women
Moana Kehres (ESP) 50’08”
Luca Nemeth (HUN) 53’57”
Luisa Valenti (ITA) 55’12”
8th – Nowelle Spencer (USA) 57’41”
15th – Naia Tower-Pierce (USA) 69’16”

Youth A Men
Iu Net Puig (ESP) 39’17”
Jan Castillo (ESP) 39’46”
Max Palmitjavila (AND) 44’27”
4th – Parke Chapin (USA) 44’36”
19th – Finn Tower-Pierce (USA) 58’58”

Youth A Women
Ida Waldal (NOR) 47’07”
Gabriela Lasalle (ESP) 53’55”
Lea Ancion (AND) 55’21”

Complete race results can be found here [PDF].

Tune in on Sunday for the Youth Skyrunning World Championships SKYRACE and follow the live tracking here.

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