Trail running is becoming more and more popular. At the adidas INFINITE TRAILS World Championships on Saturday, 29 June, three-person trail-running teams will compete in a relay competition in three different divisions (women's, men's, mixed). In an absolutely breathtaking natural setting, each runner must complete one of the three courses, each of which varies in terms of distance as well as elevation profile. The selection includes: 25 km/1900 vm – 60 km/3800 vm – 40 km/2100 vm. The last few kilometers will be run by all relay runners together, so that they can cross the finish line as a team.
Before the team members can prove themselves on the individual relay courses, they have to run a prologue together on Thursday, 27 June 2019, at 6 p.m. This will determine the starting order in the relay race on Saturday. The prologue for the World Championship team relay (15 km/891 vm) is a variety-filled loop leading to the top of the Schlossalm, whilst also serving as the adidas INFINITE TRAILS 15K RUN, an event also open to individual runners who are not members of any team. You will be going head-to-head with the best in the world, or simply enjoy the atmosphere as you treat this as a relaxing after-work trail run. The field is limited to 500 individual starters. For further information, please click here.
Whereas Friday this year has been planned as a kind of "relaxation day" for the relay teams - including an Athlete Brunch, spa visit and yoga - all avid fans of outdoor sports are invited to take advantage of this day to see what they are capable of: If you, too, would like to experience what it feels like to cross the finish line of the imposing adidas INFINITE TRAILS Arena, you will have an opportunity to do just that on Friday, 28 June. This is when WSV Bad Hofgastein will host their annual Market Run. It has been integrated into the big event for the first time and is open to all ages (5 and older).
The start takes place in early dawn at 4 a.m. on Saturday, 29 June. It is definitely worth getting up early, since the starting runners will begin the race in an exciting pursuit format By sunrise, the lead runners will already be reaching the summit ridge of the Gamskarkogel. The fastest competitors are expected to be back in Bad Hofgastein by around 6:25 a.m., where their team mates will be lined up to make the transition.
The second and, at 60 km, the longest loop leads the trail runners past Bad Gastein’s famous waterfall and through beautiful landscapes up towards the Graukogel. The ridge line eventually brings the athletes to the highest point, Graukogel summit at 2,492 m, where they are rewarded with incredible views. They now continue to Sportgastein and over the Zittrauertisch until, at around 11:30 a.m., the next exchange takes place in the Alpen Arena and the final runners make their way out onto the course.
The third loop takes runners towards the mouth of the valley and to Dorfgastein. The highlight of this stage is undoubtedly the ridge run from the Jedlkopf over the Seebachkatzenkopf to the weather cross. By around 3 in the afternoon, and after 127 kilometers and 7800 vertical meters, the first World Championship team will be enjoying its lap of honor back in Bad Hofgastein. As they cross the finish line in the Alpen Arena together, all of the athletes will be able to soak up the adulation of the crowd they so richly deserve.
With the finish now behind them, the runners might well decide to enjoy some time in the sauna and the thermal swimming lakes. In addition, they can take advantage of the massages and physiotherapy available to them in the Athletes Zone close to the finish area. And finally, all kinds of regional specialties will be available to help everyone top up their batteries.
Gastein invites travel companions and hotel guests to visit various hotspots at huts along the courses, including those on the Graukogel and the Stubnerkogel. Thanks to discounted tickets for the buses and lifts, it couldn't be easier to stay one step ahead of the runners and cheer them on as they pass. In addition, DJs and sports announcers will do their part to fire up spectators as well.
Diverse side events, such as yoga sessions and Friday's Market Run, invite everyone to get involved. There's no shortage of food and drink during the events either, thanks to regional farmers and their homemade products in Bad Hofgastein and the bein.hoat Weisswurst Party in Dorfgastein.