The World Mountain Running Association (WMRA) World Cup heads to Czech Republic for the first time this weekend for Krkonossky Half Marathon.
In what is the sixth round of this season’s competition, the athletes will tackle a demanding course in the historic, world-renowned spa town of Janske Lazne.
Last weekend’s iconic Sierre-Zinal race saw Kilian Jornet (ESP) and Maude Mathys (SUI) claim memorable victories ahead of a typically strong field, and the line-up for Krkonossky Half Marathon is set to be equally as formidable.
Which runners to look out for
Filimon Abraham (GER) is a strong contender for victory in the men’s race in Czech Republic, having picked up second at Grossglockner Berglauf to add to his long list of WMRA World Cup podium finishes.
Raul Criado (ESP) showed strong pace to grab third at Tatra SkyMarathon in round four and could certainly push for a podium once again on Sunday.
Another athlete who could threaten the podium places is Timotej Bečan (SLO), who put in a solid performance as he clinched sixth at Grossglockner Berglauf in round two.
In the women’s race, Charlotte Morgan (GBR) will be looking to continue her string of positive results. The 2018 World Long Distance Mountain Running Champion claimed victory at Tatra Race Run last month and grabbed third at Tatra SkyMarathon.
Mocja Koligar (SLO) meanwhile has made significant gains in the WMRA World Rankings and will be hoping to improve on her sixth placed finish at Grossglockner Berglauf. The winner of that race in Austria, Joyce Muthoni Njeru (KEN), is also set to be involved.
Another name to look out for is 2019 WMRA World Cup winner Sarah McCormack (IRL), who is expected to be on the start line in Czech Republic.
Though the 21km course is a full 10km shorter than last weekend’s event in the Swiss mountains, Krkonossky Half Marathon will be far from straightforward.
The challenging classic distance route features 1,050m of climbing, with the start line set in Colonnade Square in the centre of Janske Lazne.
Participants face a gruelling ascent along a trail which scales the summit of the Cerna Hora mountain, before making their way to the ski resort town of Pec Pod Sněžkou.
The course then loops round and back down the mountain to the finishing line in Colonnade Square.
How to follow the race
You can follow latest news and results via WMRA social media channels – Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Sunday’s action gets underway at 09:00 local time.