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Running Phenom Kilian Jornet Will Not Compete in 2017 Mt. Marathon Race, Breaks More World Records

By Brian Wright for Seward City News-
Kilian Jornet Mount Marathon Race
Kilian Jornet waves to the crowd as he approaches the finish line in 2015. Photo by Steve Fink

When world-renowned mountain runner Kilian Jornet finished the 2015 Mount Marathon Race with a time of 41 minutes and 48 seconds, he shattered the coveted course record by more than a minute.

Jornet’s mountain running prowess continued to impress the world following his Mount Marathon Race record.  He has since shattered the Mount Everest summit record, ascending 11,429 feet in a mere 17 hours.  He broke the record for Alaska’s Denali by nearly five hours, clocking a time of 11 hours and 46 minute, up and back.  He has also set speed records on Mont Blanc, the Matterhorn, Aconcagua, and Kilimanjaro as part of his “Summits of My Life” project.

During the 2015 race Jornet and his girlfriend Emelie Forsberg, both first time Mt. Marathon competitors and European citizens, broke the men’s and women’s records respectively. Last year’s race, however, saw Anchorage runner David Norris reclaim the race’s highest honor for American (and Alaskan) athletes, shaving 22 seconds off Jornet’s time and setting the stage for what many hoped would be a rematch between the two runners.


Kilian Jornet and Ricky Gates vie for the Mt. Marathon summit
Kilian Jornet (left) and Ricky Gates battle for the summit in the 2015 race. Photo: John Kingsland.

Some may be disappointed to learn that Jornet will not be competing in this year’s event.

“Kilian really loved the race and would come back at some point,” Jornet’s press team member, Laura Font, informed the Seward City News in an email interview. “This year he’ll be preparing for other races such as the Hardrock (100) in Colorado.” The Hardrock 100 Ultramarathon, which Jornet holds the records for in both the clockwise and counterclockwise iterations, will be held this year on July 14th in Silverton, Colorado.

Jornet’s absence at this year’s race may remove one storyline from the event, but it opens up the competition for other racers, which will include a bevy of premier athletes from all over Alaska, the United States and abroad.