Sky Race - Chemin du Roy: 3 July 2005
Warm and sunny
After Davos (K30) last year, when Marie-Aline mentioned "there's this race a bit like Davos that starts in the village where my parents have a holiday chalet (in
France)", we both decided we might give it a go this year if the timing was ok. It was a bit hard finding details but eventually we found it - the 7th Fila Sky Race -
25km of alpine running with 900m of uphill (and downhill) from Serre Chevalier - a ski resort in the French Alps.
Well, the timing worked since Sal & I were on holiday in France anyway, and so was M-A, so we entered.
At 05:30 this morning when the alarm went off I was questioning my sanity; having now done the race I know I'm mad (some of you probably knew that anyway!) "A 25km race - what's the problem" I can hear you say. Well those who've run Davos (e.g. K42) will understand - altitude and vertical height gained in the race make things quite a bit tougher than a UK road race. This race had +450m in the 1st 10km - that's harder than "Drovers Arms" in Welsh Castles! 200m of this was so steep (up a stream gully) that everyone was walking! Then we had another +450m (and some downhill) in the next 12km and the sting in the tail: 600m of downhill in the last 3km. Plus, it's all off road.
I now feel like I've done a marathon: my stiffness not helped by the fact that I tripped over twice on the rough ground and fell head over heels so I've got some fine grazes and bruises as well! I guess a fell race in the French Alps was never going to be easy!
Marie-Aline was 8th woman in about 2h29 (1st woman was around 2h00 and 1st man took about 1h50). The leaders' times should give you an idea of the difficulty.
The were only around 275 taking part so this is a much smaller race than Davos and an excellent, hard alternative for anyone who fancies a change. There's also a 50km
version (Trail des Cerces) with over 2000m vertical if this race sounds too easy :-)
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