Announcement from the 2022 World Mountain & Trail Running Championships, 3-6 November 2022 in Chiang Mai, Thailand.
- 43 teams from all over the world signed up, 900 athletes expected (+ mass races)
- $4,000 for the winners of each race. Prize money paid 5-deep, equal for men/women and mountain/trail
- Two successful site visits held – each team to receive up to $5,000 in travel subsidies
- Media briefing held in El Paso, Spain, on the occasion of the European Off-Road Running Championships
More details about the inaugural World Mountain & Trail Running Championships (Chiang Mai, Thailand, 3-6 November 2022) have been disclosed today in a media briefing held in El Paso, Spain, on the occasion of the European Off-Road Running Championships.
Against the backdrop of a global pandemic which still presents a degree of challenge, 43 teams have submitted preliminary entries for the event.
The total number of entries submitted so far nears 900. While some may be related to athletes competing in more than one race, this represents an extremely positive uptake, especially for an event taking place far away from the traditional cradle-countries of the sport. In a bid to provide flexibility to national athletics associations which may still be unsure of their ability to travel, the deadline for entries has been extended until at least the end of August.
The championships was originally planned to be held last year in Chiang Mai, but postponed to 2022 due to the pandemic.
“In my June site visit, I’ve seen a local organizing committee which is not just committed and passionate, but also very competent” – declared Enrico Pollini, General Secretary of ITRA – International Trail Running Association. “Everything moves forward according to the plan, and by the end of July we will have sorted out the final details of the medical & rescue plan, which is the current area of focus of the local team.”
The event is organized by the Tourism Authority of Thailand in cooperation with ITRA, WMRA (World Mountain Running Association) and IAU (International Association of Ultrarunners), under the general coordination of World Athletics.
“Besides the symbolic value of a world championships, there are considerable financial incentives for athletes and teams. Individual prize money is paid 5-deep, with USD 4,000 for the winners of each race, junior events excluded” – said Dr Hilary Walker, IAU General Secretary. “Also, there are travel subsidies made available by the Tourism Authority of Thailand – a national federation entering full teams in all events will receive USD 5,000 to help offset cost of travel.”
Mountain racer Andrew Douglas from Team Great Britain also intervened in the media briefing. “Racing in new places is always exciting and I am particularly looking forward to this one” – he said. “It’s a landscape-based sport so we’re always curious to discover new places, terrains and challenges. The 2019 Worlds in Argentina were fabulous, and I am sure this one too will hit every runner’s imagination.”
“It’s special. You’ve got a distinct feeling. The vegetation, the terrain and the villages the race crosses – everything reminds you that you’re racing in an unusual place, and that’s the richness of our sport” – said Tomo Šarf, WMRA President and designer of some of the competition courses. “It’s not high-altitude, it’s not alpine, but challenging all the same.”
The event will be held on 3-6 November 2022. More information at wmtrc2021thailand.com.
Information for U.S. athletes about qualifying for this world championship can be found on the USATF MUT webpage.