This Week In Running: September 4, 2023

This Week in Running’s trail and ultra recap for September 4, 2023.

By on September 4, 2023 | Comments

This Week in Running Justin Mock TWIRIt’s a long one, let’s get going right away!

First, for more on the UTMB Mont Blanc festival of races, see iRunFar’s earlier reporting that covers the greater race dynamics.

TDS – Chamonix, France

A big field of 1,649 started the race just after midnight and going into brutal conditions. Snow forced a course change, but that certainly didn’t lessen the challenge. The new course added 5 kilometers of distance, pushing the total up to 150k (93 miles,) and frequently on snowy and muddy trails. The race had a 39% drop rate, certainly in part due to the weather.

French runners swept the women’s podium, and only the race winner came in under 24 hours. Maryline Nakache finished in 23:37, outpacing countrywomen Fiona Porte and Flavie Bruyneel. Porte and Bruyneel finished in 24:08 and 24:26.

Maryline Nakache - 2023 TDS champion

Maryline Nakache would go on to win the 2023 TDS. Photo: UTMB

Professional cyclist-turned-ultrarunner Christian Meier (Canada) gained the men’s lead near 90k and pushed ahead toward a 19:36 winning time. Simen Wästlund (Sweden) chased to second in 19:57, and Yannick Noël (France) was third in 20:18.

Full results.

Christian Meier - 2023 TDS champion

Christian Meier on his way to winning the 2023 TDS. Photo: UTMB

OCC – Chamonix, France

Weather was better here than for the day prior TDS, but a rock slide still forced a slight reroute on the roughly 55k mountain track from Switzerland to France.

Fifth a year ago, Toni McCann (South Africa) ruled the women’s race with a 5:18 finish. She was eight minutes better than everyone else. The 2022 UTMB winner Katie Schide (U.S.) stepped down in distance and held off Miao Yao (China) for runner-up honors. The two finished in 5:26 and 5:27, and only 42 seconds apart.

2023 OCC womens podium - Toni McCann - Katie Schide - Miao Yao

The 2023 OCC women’s podium (l-to-r): 2. Katie Schide, 1. Toni McCann, and 3. Miao Yao. Photo: UTMB

For the men, already a two-time world champion, Stian Angermund (Norway) again delivered on the big stage. It was close, but Angermund finished in 4:42. Second-place Francesco Puppi (Italy) edged out Antonio Martínez (Spain) late, and the two finished in 4:44 and 4:45.

Full results.

Stian Angermund - 2023 OCC champion

Stian Angermund with his son after winning the 2023 OCC. Photo: UTMB

CCC – Chamonix, France

Over 2,200 runners started the race and went for 101k (63 miles) with 6,100 meters (20,000 feet) of elevation gain.

Yngvild Kaspersen (Norway) dominated the women’s race in 11:51. She was remarkably 37 minutes better than the second-place woman. Kaspersen was seventh at the Black Canyon 100k in the U.S. earlier this year. Emily Hawgood (Zimbabwe) was second in 12:28, and rising star Helen Mino Faukner (U.S.) was third in 12:38.

Yngvild Kaspersen - 2023 CCC champion

Yngvild Kaspersen on the way to winning the 2023 CCC, part of the UTMB Mont Blanc festival. Photo: UTMB

The 2022 CCC runner-up Jon Albon (U.K., lives in Norway) gained the men’s win in 10:14. That’s two minutes faster than his time from last year. Jia-Sheng Shen (China), doubling back from a fourth-place run at the Western States 100 in June, was second in 10:22, and Dakota Jones (U.S.) was third in 10:41.

Full results.

Jonathan Albon - 2023 CCC champion

Jonathan Albon, 2023 CCC champion. Photo: UTMB

UTMB – Chamonix, France


Fans around the world are still gasping at Courtney Dauwalter’s achievement. Dauwalter completed a once-in-a-lifetime triple. In June 2023, she won the Western States 100 in course record time. In July 2023 she won and broke the Hardrock 100 course record too. And she now earned her third UTMB win in 23:29 to cap an absolutely incredible summer. The tally shows three 100 milers, three wins, and two course records. Dauwalter’s UTMB course record stands at 22:30 from 2021.

Courtney Dauwalter - 2023 UTMB champion

Courtney Dauwalter, 2023 UTMB champion. Photo: iRunFar/Meghan Hicks

Behind the winner, it was close for the two remaining podium spots. Katharina Hartmuth (Germany) edged out Blandine L’Hirondel (France) for second. The pair finished in 24:10 and 24:22, respectively. Hartmuth was second in the Trail World Championships 80k in June.

As with prior years, we like to round up everyone from the pre-race preview articles and share how they did. The full group then is as follows:

1 – Courtney Dauwalter (U.S.) – 23:29
2 – Katharina Hartmuth (Germany) – 24:10
3 – Blandine L’Hirondel (France) – 24:22
4 – Fu-Zhao Xiang (China) – 24:50
5 – Maite Maiora (Spain) – 25:02
6 – Katarzyna Solińska (Poland) – 25:20
7 – Ailsa MacDonald (Canada) – 25:48
8 – Leah Yingling (U.S.) – 26:21
9 – Sabrina Stanley (U.S.) – 26:58
10 – Lucy Bartholomew (Australia) – 27:39
12 – Martina Klancnik Potrč (Slovenia) – 28:21
13 – Emily Vaudan (Switzerland) – 28:34
15 – Kimino Miyazaki (Japan) – 28:53
16 – Claire Bannwarth (France) – 29:12
19 – Amanda Basham (U.S.) – 29:29
22 – Elisabeth Borgersen (Norway) – 30:48
23 – Elisabeth Rios (Bolivia) – 31:32
40 – Veronica Ramirez (Argentina) – 33:56

Drops included Luzia Buehler (Switzerland),  Manon Bohard Callier (France), Eszter Csillag (Hungary), Elise Delannoy (France), Melanie Delasoie (Switzerland), Emily Gilmour-Walsh (Australia), Ida-Sophie Hegemann (Germany), Sarah Ludowici (Australia), Anna McKenna (Australia), Jo Meek (U.K.), Mariya Nikolova (Bulgaria), Taylor Nowlin (U.S.), Emma Pooley (Switzerland), Aroa Sio (Spain), Claudia Tremps (Spain), Martina Valmassoi (Italy), and Ildikó Wermescher (Hungary).

Cat Bradley (U.S.), Anna Carlsson (Sweden), Ruth Croft (New Zealand), Basilia Förster (Italy), Clare Gallagher (U.S.), and Kerry-Ann Marshall (South Africa) did not start.

The biggest overachiever — that is, the first finisher not named in the preview, was 11th-place Claire Heslop (Canada) in 28:05.

Women's podium - 2023 UTMB - Hartmuth, Dauwalter, L'Hirondel

The women’s podium (l-to-r): 2. Katharina Hartmuth, 1. Courtney Dauwalter, and 3. Blandine L’Hirondel. Photo: iRunFar/Meghan Hicks


The wait is over. Jim Walmsley (U.S.) became the first American man to win UTMB, and he did it with a 19:37 course record finish. Zach Miller (U.S.) improved on his previous UTMB best too while pushing Walmsley late. Miller finished second in 19:58, and Germain Grangier (France) was third in 20:10.

Jim Walmsley - 2023 UTMB champion

Jim Walmsley, 2023 UTMB champion. Photo: iRunFar/Meghan Hicks

As with the women’s race, the full group from the pre-race preview article is as follows:

1 – Jim Walmsley (U.S.) – 19:37
2 – Zach Miller (U.S.) – 19:58
3 – Germain Grangier (France) – 20:10
4 – Mathieu Blanchard (France) – 20:54
5 – Ludovic Pommeret (France) – 21:00
6 – Thibaut Garrivier (France) – 21:10
7 – Tyler Green (U.S.) – 21:19
8 – Hannes Namberger (Germany) – 21:20
9 – Arthur Joyeux-Bouillon (France) – 21:31
10 – Baptiste Chassagne (France) – 21:38
11 – Joaquin Lopez (Ecuador) – 21:47
12 – Daniel Jones (New Zealand) – 21:55
14 – Ji Duo (China) – 22:07
15 – Scotty Hawker (New Zealand) – 22:13
16 – Thomas Joly (U.K.) – 22:25
17 – Rod Farvard (U.S.) – 22:32
18 – Raul Octaviu Butaci (Romania) – 22:38
19 – Yan-Qiao Yun (China) – 22:41
20 – Sergio Pereyra (Argentina) – 23:01
24 – Diego Pazos (Switzerland) – 23:17
25 – Gediminas Grinius (Lithuania) – 23:31
33 – Adrian Macdonald (U.S.) – 24:53
37 – Ryan Sandes (South Africa) – 25:17
53 – Jeff Colt (U.S.) – 26:15
61 – Tim Tollefson (U.S.) – 26:49
132 – Matt Daniels (U.S.) – 29:29

Drops included Gautier Airiau (France), Philipp Ausserhofer (Italy), Pau Capell (Spain), Abel Carretero (Spain), Francesco Cucco (Italy), Hugo Deck (France), Guo-Min Deng (China), Ben Dhiman (U.S.), Tom Evans (U.K.), Petter Engdahl (Sweden, lives in Norway), Tobias Dahl Fenre (Norway), José Fernández (Spain), Jordi Gamito (Spain), Robert Hajnal (Romania), David Hedges (U.S.), Miguel Heras (Spain), Didrik Hermansen (Norway), Moisés Jimenez (Venezuela), Anders Kjaerevik (Norway), Sebastian Krogvig (Norway), Beñat Marmissolle (France), Ionel Cristian Manole (Romania), Jeff Mogavero (U.S.), Tom Owens (U.K.), Jonas Russi (Switzerland), Jean-Philippe Tschumi (Switzerland), Josh Wade (U.K.), and Jia-Ju Zhao (China.)

Arlen Glick (U.S.), Cody Lind (U.S.), Min Qi (China), and Jason Schlarb (U.S.) did not start the race.

The first male finisher that was not in the preview article was 13th-place Santos Gabriel Rueda (Argentina) in 21:59.

Full results.

Men's podium Zach Miller Jim Walmsley Germain Grangier - 2023 UTMB

The 2023 UTMB men’s podium (l-to-r): 2. Zach Miller, 1. Jim Walmsley, 3. Germain Grangier. Photo: iRunFar/Meghan Hicks

Vertical Nasego and Trofeo Nasego – Casto, Italy

The two World Mountain Running Association World Cup races happened on back-to-back days.

Vertical Nasego

Saturday’s uphill race climbed 1,000 meters over 4.3k. Uphill all-timer Andrea Mayr (Austria) led the women and broke her own course record with a 38:06 finish. No other woman has ever run under 40 minutes on this course.

Frequent runner-up Philaries Kisang (Kenya) again held that spot, finishing in 40:27, and Scout Adkin (U.K.) was third in 40:35.

Andrea Mayr - 2023 Vertical Nasego champion

Andrea Mayr, 2023 Vertical Nasego champion. Photo: Marco Gulberti

Two-time World Mountain Running Uphill champion Patrick Kipngeno (Kenya) won the men’s event in 34:25. Christian Allen (U.S.) charged late to overtake Joe Steward (U.K.), flipping the finish order from last week’s Challenge Stellina race. Allen finished in 35:01 and Steward was third in 35:08.

Sierre-Zinal race winner Philemon Kiriago (Kenya) was fifth in 35:48.

Full results.

Patrick Kipngeno - 2023 Vertical Nasego champion

Patrick Kipngeno wins the 2023 Vertical Nasego. Photo: Marco Gulberti

Trofeo Nasego 

Andrea Mayr doubled back the next day for the up-and-down race and gained the ultimate lead only with 2k to go. She was victorious in 1:46:06. Longtime race leader Madalina Florea (Romania) was second in 1:46:52. The rest of the top five was Joyce Muthoni (Kenya), Philaries Kisang, and Susanna Saapunki (Finland) in 1:48:33, 1:49:44, and 1:50:06, respectively.

Andrea Mayr - 2023 Trofeo Nasego champion

Andrea Mayr en route to winning the 2023 Trofeo Nasego. Photo: Marco Gulberti

Many of the top men doubled back too and Kiriago found this up-and-down terrain more to his liking. In a repeat of their Sierre-Zinal finishes, Philemon Kiriago finished first in 1:31:00, just ahead of teammate Patrick Kipngeno in 1:31:45. Christian Allen impressed with a third-place 1:32:33, beating out Italian runners Cesare Maestri and Xavier Chevrier. Maestri and Chevrier finished in 1:34:43 and 1:36:17, respectively.

Full results.

Philemon Kiriago - 2023 Trofeo Nasego champion

Philemon Kiriago on his way to winning the 2023 Trofeo Nasego. Photo: Marco Gulberti

Additional Races and Runs

ETC Race – Courmayeur, Italy

Also part of the UTMB Mont Blanc festival and an acronym for Experience Trail Courmayeur, this was a 15k race on Tuesday, August 29. Sara Alonso (Spain) led the women in 1:37 and Roberto Delorenzi (Switzerland) won in 1:19. Full results.

Ben Nevis Race – Fort William, United Kingdom

Rose Mather (U.K.) and Finlay Wild (U.K.) won the race up and down Britain’s highest mountain in 1:59 and 1:35. Full results.

Three Corner Rock PCT 50k – Carson, Washington

Allie Ostrander set a new course record in 4:43 on the point-to-point run, and professional triathlete Ari Klau won the men’s race in 4:40.

(In 2023, Ostrander was suspended for four months after testing positive for canrenone, a metabolite of spironolactone, after it was determined that she mistakenly took the drug without first obtaining a World Anti-Doping Agency Therapeutic Use Exemption.)

Full results.

Grand Traverse – Aspen, Colorado

The race ran 40 miles from Crested Butte to Aspen and paid $1,000 to its winners. Brook Handler and Keegan Oldani got to Aspen first in 7:07 and 6:14. Full results.

Call for Comments

Whew, what a great week that was! What’s coming up next?

Justin Mock

Justin Mock is the This Week In Running columnist for iRunFar. He’s been writing about running for 10 years. Based in Europe, Justin has run as fast as 2:29 for a road marathon and finished as high as fourth in the Pikes Peak Marathon.