2017 Trail World Championships Results

2017 Trail World ChampionshipsIn the steep, forested mountains of northern Tuscany, Italy, outside the little village of Badia Prataglia, the 2017 Trail World Championships took place on the Trail Sacred Forests race course. With 50 kilometers and nearly 3,000 meters of climbing on a relatively non-technical course, it was Team France who dominated the women’s team race, taking the team gold medal, with Adeline Roche (post-race interview) emerging as the women’s individual trail world champion. In the men’s race, Team Spain dominated the team race and took home team gold, with Luis Alberto Hernando (pre-race and post-race interviews) successfully defending his title and winning the individual race for the second time in a row.

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2017 Trail World Championships Women’s Race

What a women’s race! It was the USA’s Ladia Albertson-Junkans and France’s Adeline Roche  (post-race interview) who took out the women’s race, sharing the lead at 9 kilometers, weaving in and out of the men’s field. They were not alone, however, as a big pack of women was strung out behind them in short order, most immediately France’s Amandine Ferrato (post-race interview) and the Netherlands’s Ragna Debats. Italy’s Silvia Rampazzo rounded out the women’s top five there. Among this group of early leaders, the only familiar face from previous Trail World Championships was Ragna Debats, who was returning following her third place last year.

2017 Trail World Championships - Adeline Roche - Ladia Albertson Junkans

Adeline Roche and Ladia Albertson-Junkans lead at 9 kilometers. Photo: iRunFar/Bryon Powell

The next time we saw the women at 19 kilometers, at the top of the major climb of the race’s first half, the women’s field had stretched out some, with Adeline looking comfortable and comfortably in front of the rest of the field by about one minute. She climbed with ease, jogging the steeps. Behind her was Amandine, moving just as well, but looking like she was working harder. Ladia had shifted back to third place, but literally just steps out of second, and with fourth-place Ragna just a few steps behind her. Thus, the big story at this point was leader Adeline gapping the rest of the field.

2017 Trail World Championships - Amandine Ferrato - 19km

Amandine Ferrato at 19km. Photo: iRunFar/Meghan Hicks

At 29k, just after they finished the first of two big climbs in the race’s second half, Adeline was now two minutes off the front and looking strong. We began to think that this road runner who had recently taken up trail running and who sports a 2:38 marathon best was putting away the race. Amandine ran in second place, now two minutes off the front, still looking like she was putting a lot of effort into her run, but also still moving really well. This pair had two totally different run styles, but both looked just great. Italy’s Silvia Rampazzo had now moved up to third place. Ladia had dropped back a spot to fourth place, but looked well on the flat dirt road here. Ragna now was in the fifth-place position.

2017 Trail World Championships - Ladia Albertson Junkans - 29km

Ladia Albertson-Junkans at 29km. Photo: iRunFar/Meghan Hicks

Outside of the top-five women, there was a gap to the rest of the women’s field, but a heated race was happening, and, to be clear, Team France was coming on really strong. At 29k, members of Team France occupied positions 1, 2, 6, 7, and 10. With only three members scoring for the team, there was tons of room for things to go wrong for someone–or two women. Foreshadowing? Nope, Team France would close the race’s final 21k just as well as they were running here, and absolutely kill the rest of the women’s team race. A gold medal for Team France again.

2017 Trail World Championships - Nathalie Maucliar - 9km

Nathalie Mauclair under control at 9km. Photo: iRunFar/Bryon Powell

Adeline struggled some with stomach issues in the race, and as part of this, she gave back all of her lead over the race’s final third. Near the end of the race, Amandine caught her. Across the line the women would go one-two and three seconds apart from each other, Adeline in first and taking the title of individual trail world champion. They grinned and celebrated together, clearly happy for each other. After the race, Amandine said that she wanted her friend to win, and that she was happy to finish second and help guarantee a Team France victory.

2017 Trail World Championships - Adeline Roche - Amandine Ferrato

Adeline Roche finishing ahead of teammate Amandine Ferrato to win the 2017 Trail World Championships. Photo: iRunFar/Bryon Powell

It was quite a while until we would see third-place Silvia Rampazzo at the finish–some 11 minutes–but she was welcomed with a lot of support in being the top finisher of the home team. As someone we haven’t seen race until recently, we’ve now watched her run an impressive double: second at the Zegama Marathon two weeks ago and, now, third here. She passed on doing an interview with us both times, so we’re not able to provide much other information about Silvia and her performances.

2017 Trail World Championships - Silvia Rampazzo - finish

Silvia Rampazzo making the host country proud with a third-place finish at the 2017 Trail World Championships. Photo: iRunFar/Bryon Powell

Ragna ultimately finished in fourth position and France’s Nathalie Mauclair (pre-race interview), who started out comfortably and consistently moved up to finish fifth position, stamping Team France’s victory in serious style.

2017 Trail World Championships - Ragna Debats - 29km

Ragna Debats cruising along at 29km. Photo: iRunFar/Meghan Hicks

France’s Celia Lafaye, who’d run inside the top 10 for the whole race, finished a very strong sixth place. Spain’s Laia Cañes took seventh and the top spot for Team Spain, who was clearly having a challenging team race compared to their very strong second-place team medal last year. Another Frenchwoman, Lucie Jamsin, took eighth. Ninth and 10th positions were filled out by Austria’s Sandra Koblmüller and Germany’s Elizabeth Fladerer.

2017 Trail World Championships - Laia Cañes - 19km

Laia Cañes leading the Spaniards at 19km. Photo: iRunFar/Meghan Hicks

Team Italy, the home team, would end up with the silver medal, with Italy filling positions 12 and 15 with Gloria Giudici and Barbara Bani. Team Spain, last year’s silver medalist, squeaked in to bronze position this year via Anna Comet’s (pre-race interview) 14th-place finish and Gemma Arena’s (pre-race interview) 25th place. (Teams are scored by time, but the times work out.)

2017 Trail World Championships - Gemma Arenas - Nathalie Maucliar - 9km

Gemma Arenas with Nathalie Mauclair at 9km. Photo: iRunFar/Bryon Powell

Ladia, who worked the front of the race for such a long time, would ultimately finish as first American in 13th place.

2017 Trail World Championships - Ladia Albertson Junkans - finish

Ladia Albertson-Junkans after her 13th-place finish. Photo: iRunFar/Bryon Powell

2017 Trail World Championships Women’s Results

  1. Adeline Roche (France) — 5:00:44 (post-race interview)
  2. Amandine Ferrato (France) — 5:00:47 (post-race interview)
  3. Silvia Rampazzo (Italy) — 5:11:07
  4. Ragna Debats (Netherlands) — 5:14:16
  5. Nathalie Mauclair (France) — 5:16:10 (pre-race interview)
  6. Celine Lafaye (France) — 5:19:17
  7. Laia Cañes (Spain) — 5:19:36
  8. Lucie Jasmin (France) — 5:21:08
  9. Sandra Koblmüller (Austria) — 5:22:27
  10. Elizabeth Flanderer (Germany) — 5:25:18
  11. Maija Oravamäki (Finland) — 5:25:22
  12. Gloria Rita Giudici (Italy) — 5:25:36
  13. Ladia Albertson-Junkans (USA) — 5:27:51
  14. Anna Comet (Spain) — 5:27:59 (pre-race interview)
  15. Barbara Bani (Italy) — 5:28:25
  16. Sandra Martin (France) — 5:29:44
  17. Jo Meek (Great Britain) —  5:31:34
  18. Franziska Etter (Switzerland) — 5:34:15
  19. Michaela Mertova (Czech) — 5:34:32
  20. Dominika Stalmach (Poland) — 5:36:12

Full results.

2017 Trail World Championships - women's team podium

The 2017 Trail World Championships women’s team podium (l-to-r): 2. Italy, 1. France, 3. Spain. Photo: iRunFar/Bryon Powell

2017 Trail World Championships Men’s Race

Everyone I heard talking about the race at the finish line said that Team USA took the men’s race out hot and that the early part of the race was influenced by their efforts. Among Team USA it was Andy Wacker (pre-race interview) leading the race full-on at 9 kilometers in. Inside the top 10 there were loads of U.S. men still: Cody Reed in fourth, Hayden Hawks in seventh, and David Roche in 10th. Holy smokes! Defending champion Luis Alberto Hernando (pre-race and post-race interviews) shared second place with France’s Cédric Fleureton (post-race interview), a former international-level triathlete trying international trail running for the first time.

2017 Trail World Championships - Andy Wacker - 9km

Andy Wacker in the lead at 9km. Photo: iRunFar/Bryon Powell

We spotted the men next atop the big climb to 19k, and Andy remained in the lead. To be honest, though, he didn’t look that good in comparison to the men behind him. Nevertheless, he maintained a gap of 45 seconds over second-place Cédric, who looked everything like a mountain goat scampering up the steep hill. What impressed me the most, though, was the breathing of Luis in third place and just under two minutes back. Let’s just say that he was working incredibly hard. Another minute back at this point was Finland’s Henri Ansio and France’s Nico Martin, who was returning to the Trail World Championships to defend his second place here last year. At this point, USA still had two more men inside the top 10, sixth-place Cody and seventh-place David.

2017 Trail World Championships - Luis Alberto Hernando - 19km

Luis Alberto Hernando at 19km. Photo: iRunFar/Meghan Hicks

At 29k, after the runners reached the top of the race’s third big climb and along the dirt road there, Cédric was now leading the men’s race with Luis running two minutes back in second. Both of this pair looked quite strong and Andy, who had led the race for its first half, had dropped back to seventh place while bonking.

2017 Trail World Championships - Cedric Fleureton - 29km

Cédric Fleureton at 29km. Photo: iRunFar/Meghan Hicks

In the back half of the men’s top 10, we saw two members of Team France–Nico and Ludovic Pommeret–and two members of Team Spain–Cristofer Clemente (post-race interview) and Daní Garcia–both working together as pairs. What this meant was that, with 21k to go, the team race between Teams France and Spain was really tight. Gone from the top 10 was Team USA aside from Andy, but Mario Mendoza, who was looking like he was just getting started, ran in 11th and Cody and David ran in 13th and 14th, both looking neither stellar nor terrible. Team USA was holding in bronze-medal position.

2017 Trail World Championships - Dani Garcia y Cristofer Clemente - 29km

Daní Garcia and Cristofer Clemente working together at 29km. Photo: iRunFar/Meghan Hicks

When we spotted Cédric Fleureton and Luis Alberto Hernando at 39k, Cédric still held his gap of two minutes over Luis, but Luis looked like the stronger man and that it was only a matter of real estate until he took over the lead. Sure enough, on the tough terrain of the ridgeline between 38k and 44k, Luis put the hammer down and took over the lead, and the rest was history. Finland’s Henri Ansio continued to run in third, but was more worried about those behind him than in front of him.

2017 Trail World Championships - Henri Ansio - 39km

Henri Ansio running in third at 39km. Photo: iRunFar.

We have to seriously tip our hats to Cristofer Clemente. Check this out: 31st place at 9k, 18th at 25k, ninth place at 29k (and eight minutes back!), eighth place at 35k, fourth place at 39k, and second place at the finish line–just a minute back from winner Luis. For anyone who says that you have to stay in contact with the leaders early if you want to podium in a trail ultramarathon–even a ‘short’ one–there’s an incredible lesson in Cristofer’s performance. More often than not, the way to run your own best race is to run your own race.

2017 Trail World Championships - Cristofer Clemente - 38km

Cristofer Clemente charging hard at 39km. Photo: iRunFar/Bryon Powell

Cédric Fleureton ultimately finished in third place, succumbing to leg cramps in the final 12 kilometers, but still finishing strong as the first finisher of Team France. Finland’s Ansio finished in fourth place, ending an all-day strong performance. Rolling over the finish in fifth was Daní Garcia, meaning that Team Spain would take the team gold medal. Spain wasn’t done though, and much like the total domination of Team France in the women’s race, Miguel Caballero took seventh and Pablo Villa 10th.

2017 Trail World Championships - Miguel Caballero - 9km

Miguel Caballero at 9km. Photo: iRunFar/Bryon Powell

Team France didn’t have the day they wanted–and weren’t able to defend their team gold medal from last year–but ultimately finished with a silver medal courtesy of the additional efforts of Ludovic Pommeret in sixth and Benoît Cori in 14th positions.

2017 Trail World Championships - Ludovic Pommet - 39km

Ludovic Pommeret digging deep at 39km. Photo: iRunFar/Bryon Powell

Team USA hung in there for a bronze-medal finish, with Mario Mendoza working his way into the top 10 and finishing ninth, Cody Reed in 15th, and Andy Wacker in 20th. Other early American pace pushers Hayden Hawks and David Roche would finish, but both suffering energy and cramping issues.

2017 Trail World Championships - USA team - finish

The top-three U.S. men from the 2017 Trail World Championships (l-to-r): Cody Reed, Mario Mendoza, and Andy Wacker. Photo: iRunFar/Bryon Powell

2017 Trail World Championships Men’s Results

  1. Luis Alberto Hernando (Spain) — 4:23:31 (pre-race and post-race interviews)
  2. Cristofer Clemente (Spain) — 4:24:31 (post-race interview)
  3. Cédric Fleureton (France) — 4:28:03 (post-race interview)
  4. Henri Ansio (Finland) — 4:29:24
  5. Daní Garcia (Spain) — 4:29:30
  6. Ludovic Pommeret (France) — 4:30:47
  7. Miguel Caballero (Spain) — 4:37:20
  8. Jiří Čípa (Czech) — 4:38:49
  9. Mario Mendoza (USA) — 4:41:32
  10. Pablo Villa (Spain) — 4:42:19
  11. Janosch Kowalczyk (Germany) — 4:42:30
  12. Christian Pizzati (Italy) — 4:42:56
  13. Hélio Fumo (Portugal) — 4:43:06
  14. Benoît Cori (France) — 4:44:15
  15. Cody Reed (USA) — 4:44:56
  16. Stefano Fantuz (Italy) — 4:45:21
  17. Yoshihito Kondo (Japan) — 4:48:31
  18. Tom Erik Halvorsen (Norway) — 4:49:43
  19. Nicolas Martin (France) — 4:50:09
  20. Andy Wacker (USA) — 4:50:24 (pre-race interview)

Full results.

2017 Trail World Championships - men's team podium

The 2017 Trail World Championships men’s team podium (l-to-r): 2. France, 1. Spain, 3. USA. Photo: iRunFar/Bryon Powell

2017 Trail World Championships Articles, Race Reports, and More

Updated June 17, 2017

Coverage Thanks

Thanks to Koichi Iwasa of DogsorCaravan for providing assistance on the course and Mauri Paggliacci of Trail Running Argentina for providing off-site assistance.

There are 15 comments

  1. Brian L

    Thanks for the nice coverage and interviews! I was wondering about the prevalence of co-winners in trail running. Is there a consensus about this? In what conditions should you fight through the finish? When would you be happy to share 1st place? Should you share 1st place?

    1. Bryon Powell

      Hey Brian,
      There was a good deal of discussion about this after Kilian Jornet and Jason Schlarb tied at last year’s Hardrock 100 and when Kaci Licktieg and Magda Boulet tied at the Lake Sonoma 50 Mile in April. In short, there’s no consensus. Some folks see ultramarathon races as a forum to test oneself to her or his limit. Others see ultras as places for enjoyment and camaraderie. Still others, could see both as being important and, perhaps, varying by the day and one’s own mutable goals.

  2. JKL

    The issue with our selection process is that we don’t seem to pay attention to terrain. The Roches, for example, have not seen a rock nor a root over the last year of training. They run on beautifully paved paths in California, free from any technicality. Sure, fast paces in training look good, but they can’t hold up on a true European course. We need to select Men and Women that perform stellar on some of the most difficult courses in America or abroad. I completely understand that Max King, Sage Canaday, and Joe Grey turned down their spots, but there are tons of low-key guys that should get a shot that are grinding on hard courses with the right mentality of not falling apart and crashing in these races like we continue to see. Kudos to the teams, but there is enough history now to make a change. IAU, Long Mountain, etc., are not about speed. They are about strength and nastiness. We need to change the American mentality, if possible.

    1. Matt L

      Betting against the Roches in a 50K is like betting against the Golden State Warriors in the NBA finals. Sure, a path to victory exists for the Cavaliers via their “strength and nastiness,” but I’m betting on the dubs every time.

    2. Mark

      Here are the published selection standards for the US team:
      http://trailrunner.com/trail-news/iau-trail-world-championships-2017-team-usa-qualification-standards/
      The selection process seems fair and pretty transparent. There could have been different selection races, but these were all events that had pretty deep fields. I appreciate the effort that is put in by the executive committee members to select the best team possible. As you say there were many athletes who met the B standard but didn’t choose or were unable to go. There was a call for running resumes that I saw this spring which indicated to me they didn’t have a large enough selection pool. It is silly to complain about any of the athletes who were selected (Megan Roche won a selection race outright) and who chose to spend a significant amount of their time training and preparing for this race and then traveling to it. I’m pretty sure they didn’t get paid. The reality is that race schedules are crowded and these championship races are not the most important (or lucrative) races of the year. I appreciate and applaud these athletes who put it all on the line thousands of miles away and tested themselves when the outcome was uncertain. Isn’t that what competition is about?

        1. Mark

          What I meant is the standards for getting on the team were clear (several qualifying races, preferences for athletes in those qualifying races, followed by head-to-head comparison and Ultrarunning magazine and ultrasignup rankings). We don’t know which athletes sent in their resumes, but the standards were clearly defined. If an athlete wanted on the team they knew what they had to do.

          1. Bryan T

            It would be great if USATF would release the list of applicants, their resumes, and a brief note about why that person was selected. Of course this would open them up to a certain level of scrutiny, but in my opinion would be better than leaving people wondering why person XXX was chosen (and who wasn’t chosen)

  3. Buzz

    Are there photos to show how technical the trail was ? The photos make it seem that they were really smooth, but the pace suggests otherwise.

  4. Meghan Hicks

    I ran most of the course before the race to plan our live race coverage, and then another 17 miles on race day during our race coverage (14 of which were on the course proper). Here are my thoughts:

    As European courses go, the trail and dirt-road surfaces weren’t technical. There were a couple brief rocky, rocky/narrow, or old-cobble sections on descents–when technicality counts the most–that would have added up to maybe two or three miles total where focused footfalls were necessary. Also, the course was entirely dry, so there was no mud or added technicality from slippery rocks.

    I found the ascents and descents to be quite steep, on par with the grades I see elsewhere in Europe, though as a whole the climbs and descents were more brief. A lot of the course I would call punchy–a couple hundred really steep feet up or down at a time. And the course had loads of truly runnable stuff, like nearly flat dirt roads, wide singletrack, and narrow but buff singletrack.

    Overall, there was a lot of climbing and descending–I believe a little over 10,000 feet total in about 31 miles–and I think it’s the climbing that led to ‘slow’ times rather than course technicality.

    I thought the weather conditions should have impacted overall paces some. There was overnight cloud cover the night before the race, which I think held in heat, as it was warmer at the race start than the several mornings prior and the air just heated up from there. It was decently humid during the race, too.

    I hope that helps!

  5. Sally Fawcett

    Thanks for your coverage this weekend guys, it’s fascinating to read how the race panned out at the front end of the fields. This was my favorite course from the three Three World Championships I have been to, not as technical as the previous 2 years but there were some technical sections, a lot of fast running sections on woodland trails, and then we were surprised by the steep, short climbs, with lots of false summits, that last climb was never ending!

  6. Bryan T

    Great coverage. But what a major disappointment from the US team. Although not a big surprise, as very few US runners have ever done well in Europe, but the list of excuses is getting pretty pathetic and would leave some to question whether these are actual “pros”. Racing too much in the weeks prior? Check. Not enough specificity in training? Check. Trying something new on race day? Check. Lack of self confidence? Check.

    1. JKL

      There is a push to have those with large social media following elevated, but I don’t feel that should be a criteria.

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