There were two hundred athletes in the field representing thirty eight countries which was a record for the number of countries being represented at IAU world championships. There was also a Masters 100km Championships and the Inaugural 100km GCC Championships being run concurrently.
In the Men’s race, Max King (USA) won the world championships with a time of 6:27:43. Jonas Buud (SWE) finished in 2nd place running 6:32:04 and Jose Antonio Requejo (ESP) finished in 3rd place in a time of 6:37:01.
The starting men’s field was quite deep with three runners, Vasily Larkin (RUS), Steve Way (GBR) and defending champion Giorgio Calcaterra (ITA) all having run within minutes of each other. The pre-race favorites were all in the running with Larking taking an early lead with Nojo Hideo (JPN). The chasing group contained Way, Calcaterra, Buud, King, Alberico Di Cecco (ITA) and ten other runners.
The race conditions were not too warm, with temperatures in mid to low 20 Celsius and it was brave move for Larkin to take the lead. As the race wore on, Larkin lost his lead to the chase group with King taking the lead around the 60km mark. Buud running his trademark race of chasing from the back started coming strong in the third quarter of the race to take command of the silver place. Requejo running most of the race with Asier Cuevas (ESP) faded for a couple of laps after the half way point but then picked up the pace to take the bronze medal.
In the team competition, United States of America won the men’s title with a combined time of 20:08:06. Japan won 2nd place with 20:55:09 and Great Britain took third place with 20:57:01.
Ellie Greenwood (GBR) took the women’s race and became world champion with a time of 7:30:48. Chiyuki Mochizuki (JPN) finished 2nd running 7:38:23. Joasia Zakrzewski (GBR) finished in the 3rd place with 7:42:02.
The women’s field was as deep as the men’s field. Defending Champions Amy Sproston (USA), Monica Carlin (ITA) and Irina Antrapova (RUS) all were having times within a couple of minutes of each other in the last three years. It was Rita Nordsveen (NOR) who took the early lead being familiar with the race course having run it three weeks back at the 50km World Trophy Final. The chase group behind her included all the pre-race favourites and Croatian trio of Marija Vrajic, Nikolina Sustic and Veronika Jurisic.
The lead was relinquished a few laps later when Sproston feeling strong took first place. She ran well until 100km specialist Vrajic running in the pack behind Sproston took over the lead. Greenwood feeling strong took over the chase group and placed herself firmly as the leader around the 55km mark. She kept this lead until the very end. Mochizuki paced herself very well and took over the field in the later stages to claim second place. Zakrzewski with a second place finish recently at the Trophy Final ran the course well and finished in a strong third place.
In the team competition, Great Britain took the top honours with a combined time of 22:56:27. Japan took the silver medal with 23:22:32 and the United States of America took third place with 24:05:25.
A new record was also created with thirteen men finishing under 7 hours and ten women finishing under 8 hours. An outstanding performance by the athletes in a very deep field. The top 5 male and female athletes shared a total purse of $10,000.
Aspire hosted an outstanding championships. They will be the site of the IAU 50km World Championships from 2015-2017. Next year the 100km World Championships will take place in Winschoten, the Netherlands.
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1) Max King USA 6:27:43
2) Joans Buud NED 6:32:04
3) Jose Antonio Requejo ESP 6:37:01
4) Hideo Nojo JPN 6:39:21
5) Yoshiki Takada JPN 6:46:47
1) Ellie Greenwood GBR 7:30:48
2) Chuyuki Mochizuki JPN 7:38:23
3) Joasia Zakrzewski GBR 7:42:02
4) Jo Meek GBR 7:43:37
5) Irina Antropova RUS 7:44:26
1) United States of America 20:08:06
2) Japan 20:55:09
3) Great Britain 20:57:51
1) Great Britain 22:56:24
2) Japan 23:22:32
3) United States of America 24:05:25