The fight for 3rd place heated up today as athletes tagged Turnpoint 5, Monte Baldo, before swinging north into the high mountains again. While Maurer (SUI1) and Petiot (FRA2) are still battling it out at the front.
Outters, a top ultrarunner and paraglider pilot, looks to be in strong contention now after clearing Turnpoint 5, Monte Baldo early this morning in 3rd place. Pal Takats (HUN), who had a great run yesterday from the mountains north of Merano to the shores of Lake Garda would also have been in the running, but he now has to serve a 48 hour time penalty for violating an airspace infringement. During this time he is not allowed to move more than 250m from his location. (Evgenii Griaznov (RUS) must also serve his 48 hour penalty from tomorrow.)
But after that, it’s wide open with Stanislav Mayer (CZE) and Manuel Nübel (GER2) in hot pursuit. The pair reached Turnpoint 5 shortly before 10am this morning. They were followed about an hour later by Sebastian Huber (GER2) who is now back in the game after a few difficult days. “To the Matterhorn,” he shouted, as he ran from the signboard to the take off. Paul Guschlbauer (AUT1) who yesterday fell from 3rd to 7th place was next to arrive. “I’m really pleased to finally reach this turnpoint,” he said.
Close behind was Simon Oberrauner (AUT4), Ferdinand van Schelven (NLD), and Pascal Purin (AUT3). The group had a spectacular start to the day with a dawn raid on the Brenta. Purin, Huber, van Schelven, and Oberrauner all launched from a spectacular location at 2,500m next to the Rifugio Pedrotti, in the Brenta Massif.
Another athlete enjoying an unstoppable run is Gavin McClurg (USA1). Although he is not where he’d like to be, he’s been slowly clawing his way back, making some good distances in the air and is now in 16th place behind Toma Coconea (ROU) and heading towards Italy.
None of the athletes have pulled their Ledlenser Night Passes tonight. That means all the athletes still in the race will rest for the mandatory period between 10.30pm and 5am.
Looking ahead, one athlete will be eliminated at 6am on Sunday. The last athlete is currently Duncan Kotze. He faces the axe unless he manages to pass Jose Arevalo Guede (ESP), who is currently 50km ahead, before 6am tomorrow.
Follow all the action on Live Tracking on www.redbullxalps.com.
Red Bull X-Alps, the world’s toughest adventure race is its eighth edition. Starting in Salzburg, 31 Athletes of 20 nationalities will race a straight-line distance of 1,138km across the Alps to Monaco via 7 Turnpoints in 7 different countries.
Travelling only by foot or paraglider, their every move is monitored by advanced Live Tracking technology and broadcasted to an audience of millions. With constantly changing weather conditions, tactical planning is as important as the extreme endurance required to participate. For this reason, each athlete has a supporter to help with strategy, nutrition and everything in between.
A full list of the 31 athletes including individual profiles and further details can be found on redbullxalps.com/athletes. All athletes are available for interviews with the media upon request.
Can’t make it to the Red Bull X-Alps, but still want to fly like one of the athletes? Head over to redbull.com for the Red Bull X-Alps VR Experience and get your first air miles! www.redbull.com/vr