NewsThailand and Australia take 100km glory at The North Face 100® Thailand 2014
Nampetch Porntharukcharoen (THA) first in 100km female; Sanya Kanchai (THA) third overall in 100km male and first Thai finisher; Boonteung Srisang (THA) winner of 10km.
BANGKOK – More than 2,500 trail-runners descended on Pakchong district in Nakorn Ratchasima to compete in Thailand's largest trail-running challenge, The North Face 100® Thailand 2014. The biggest in the event's history, with runners competing from more than 40 countries the level of competition was exceptionally high over the 10km, 25km, 50km 100km duo and 100km solo distances.
Leading the challenge in the 100km male category was Sanya Khanchai, last year's winner. “I've trained hard this year. The course was excellent, very tough and more challenging than last year. I slipped at the 14km point, a very technical section and therefore couldn't run as fast as I wanted, but I still finished third overall against some top international competition,” he said.
First across the line and setting a new a record for The North Face 100® Thailand 100km distance was Australian Vlad Ilex in a time of 08:35:42, beating Khun Sanya's record from the year before by over one hour.
Finishing in second was Kamil Lesniak from Poland with Sanya Khanchai, last year's winner, in third.
In the female 100km race the glory was Thailand's with Nampetch Porntharukcharoen taking the lead at the 88km point and never looking back, crossing the line in a time of 13:48:12. Second place went to Austrian Eva Scheiwe with Yeung Mei Lun Melissa from Hong Kong in third.
Runners across all the distances commented on the toughness of the course with many confirming the route was even more difficult than last year, and determined to return next year to race Thailand's toughest trail run again.
Other winners included Ryan Scott Blair (USA) in the 50km male category, Leah Daugherty (USA) 50km female, Henrik Jannborg (SWE) 25km male and Lyndsey Fraser (GBR) 25km female.
With over 1,200 runners in the 10km category, athletes were started in four waves and after net times were calculated, Thai National team runner and former SEA Games multiple gold medallist Boonthueng Srisang, was crowned 10km overall (male) winner.
The female 10km honours went to Anna O`Hare (GBR) who beat Thai National team runner Natthaya Thanaronnawat (THA), by just 89 seconds into second.
The North Face 100® is the largest trail running series in Asia Pacific and includes events in Taiwan, Philippines, China, Australia, Singapore, Japan and Hong Kong. The 2014 The North Face 100® Thailand will include 10km, 25km, 50km, 100km duo (which is run in pairs, 50km each) and 100km solo distances.
The routes for all distances have been made even more challenging this year, adding more hills and exciting trail routes. The iconic 100km distance – the only one of its kind in Thailand – is the toughest yet, with a total elevation gain of 2,664 metres, highest point of 593 metres above sea-level, and with slopes over 21% gradient to conquer. In recognition of its challenging nature, the 100km solo distance has been selected as a Qualifying Race for The North Face® Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc® 2015 – the only event in Thailand to be chosen. Considered the toughest ultra-trail event in the world, The North Face® Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc® attracts the top trail runners from around the world to compete over the 168km mountainous course.
The North Face 100® Thailand is an annual trail-running event and the largest ultra trail-running challenge in Thailand, including 10km, 25km, 50km, 100km duo and 100km solo distances.
Chanut Nawnarong/ Nungruthai Julakul