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IAU 24H World Championship – behind the scenes

The 2019 IAU 24H World Championship recently culminated with fantastic results and record breaking performance from athletes all over the world. The months of discipline and hard work paid off as many athletes returned home with national records and some with world best performance. What a remarkable event indeed!!! 

Our athletes are the protagonists and the main contributors to the success of an event such as this one, but there are many others who put in a lot of hard-word to make this event happen. Team management, crew-management and other supporters, it is all a part of the overall success of the competition.  And they are the ones who play a role in helping the athletes on ground achieve their optimum. Also, considering this was the largest gathering of ultra-endurance athletes from around the world, there were a lot of activities conducted by IAU alongside that play an important role in the development of ultra-running across the globe.

It is my pleasure to share with you some activities that took place during the Championship weekend

·         Athlete commission meeting
·         Press Conference
·         Nordic Challenge meeting
·         Live stream
·         Executive Council meetings
·         Podcast on future development of ultra-running in countries and regions
·         Discussions on several other topics and also a couple of technical meetings

Each one of you who takes part in the event, either on site or even at home plays key role in building strong foundation for our community. We are one ultra-running family and we are thankful for having you all.

Athlete Commission was established in the end of 2018 and we have very experienced Athletes taking part in this initiative. It is led by Wayne Botha from New Zealand who is the Chair of the Commission with support of Virginia Oliveri from Italy who is the Vice-Chair. There are representations from different fields and regions and they make great contribution to our sport. The Championship was great opportunity to have face to face meeting with the members of the commission.

Pictures taken by Aneta Mikulska

One of our key event during the Championship weekend is the press conference. It is important to acknowledge the support from local organization, city, and other stakeholders. We try to promote our sport by having some of our finest athletes on the panel and have them speak about their own achievements. This year we had pleasure to have 6 officials and 7 athletes onboard.

Pictures taken by John O’Regan




Last year we had the opportunity to introduce the Nordic Challenge. This was a great success and we are moving forward with second edition. It is also a great way of promoting the 6H race that is most often considered as a stepping stone to move towards 100 km races which is one of our marquee Championship races.

Pictures taken by Jacek Bedkowski

Following recent trends, we are slowly becoming digital forward. We are putting in a lot of energy and effort to deliver the best coverage of our Championships to all of our supporters. This is why we introduced live stream from different events that take place during Championship weekend. Anyone could follow live stream from press conference, opening ceremony, hours before the race, start, during the race, last hour of the race, award ceremony and many others. We thought this was the best way to bring the event close to those that cannot be on the site and hence make it truly a global event for everyone. There is still room for improvement but we are getting better with each Championship we cover. Live streaming by Jacek Bedkowski

The Executive Council has several duties during the Championship but we take the opportunity and discuss several topics to make sure we address not only event specific aspects but talk about further development and betterment of the ultra-running community.

Pictures taken by Jacek Bedkowski

Starting from IAU 50 km in Brasov, Romania last September we introduced podcast as new platform to share information. It is growing trend and we are putting more effort to use this tool to have discussion and feedback from the Federations. In Albi, we discussed the further development of ultra-running in different countries and regions. We asked Pablo Barnes (Argentina), Sunil Chainani (India), Josè Daniel Vaz Cabral (Cape Verde) and Mirsad Abdakovic (Bosnia and Herzegovina) to share their experiences, vision for next years. Soon we will release the podcasts but we also want to share the effort taken behind it. Podcast done by John O’Regan and Jacek Bedkowski

Sunil Chainani (India)

Josè Daniel Vaz Cabral (Cape Verde)

John O´Regan (Republic of Ireland), Pablo Barnes (Argentina), Nadeem Khan (IAU President)

Few hours after the race I am still on my feet and full of energy. Thank you for taking part of this championship and all support from your end.

Pictures taken by Edit Berces


                        Jacek Bedkowski                                                                  Shibani Gharet

               IAU Director of Communication                                      IAU Communication Committee

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