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UTMB World Series: Symonds and Escobar-Carron take Wildstrubel titles

Patrick Ryan
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Andy Symonds and Sara Escobar-Carron secured their spots at the UTMB World Series Finals next year by winning the Wild110 at Wildstrubel by UTMB 2023.

The Wild110 was the flagship race of last weekend’s event in Switzerland, with the 113km course taking runners across 6,600m of elevation gain around the Wildstrubel massif in the Swiss Alps.

British runner Symonds complete the course in a time of 12:51:27 to win by just ten minutes, with Swiss competitor Escobar-Carron winning the women’s race by almost an hour and a half, as she completed the course in 15:33:8.

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Symonds secures UTMB spot

With his victory in Switzerland, Andy Symonds secured his spot for the UTMB Mont-Blanc at the UTMB World Series Finals next year.

One of the pre-race favourites, he was one of the leading runners from the get-go, and as runners departed the town of Crans-Montana he moved to establish himself in the race early.

Andy Symonds after winning Wildstrubel by UTMB 2023
Andy Symonds after winning Wildstrubel by UTMB 2023. Photo Courtesy of UTMB.

From the descent to Kandersteg (43km) from the peak of Gemmipass he burst into the lead, but had to dig deep when he fell behind on the descent from Bunderchrinde to Adelboden (59km), where he came into the checkpoint third.

Yet thanks to another powerful climb, the Brit came into Sillerebühl (69km) in first place- and this time he did not lose the lead.

French runner Baptiste Coatantiec secured an impressive second place and finished just ten minuted behind Symonds. A steady and solid rise through the rankings saw him take the silver in a time of 13:01:38, while third-place Italian Gilles Roux not far behind, finishing in 13:09:24.

“I had a blast all day,” Coatantiec said after the race.

“The landscapes are exceptional, there are 35-meter waterfalls everywhere, it’s amazing, truly an incredible day!”

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Escobar-Carron picks up home win

The Wildstrubel area spans both the Berne and Valais cantons of Switzerland- and it is the latter which women’s champion Sara Escobar-Carron calls home.

She dominated the women’s field from start to finish in the Wildstrubel by UTMB Wild110, eventually coming back into Crans-Montana as champion after a 15:33:09 effort- which secured her 18th overall.

Sara Escobar-Carron winning the Wildstrubel by UTMB 2023
Sara Escobar-Carron won the Wildstrubel by UTMB 2023 women’s race. Photo courtesy of UTMB.

“Efficient refuellings, energetic encouragement, laughs to relax, this is the formula,” Escobar-Carron later shared on Instagram after her win.

“A first for me, a first for my loved ones who wondered what state they were going to pick me up in in Crans-Montana!”

It was a Swiss one-two in the women’s field too, with Kathrin Goetz cruising to the silver medal position with a 16:00:59 run. Charlotte Charlotte D’Alencon took third.

Wild70, Wild50 and Wild20 all offer up excitement

There was plenty of other action taking place at Wildstrubel by UTMB as well, with the Wild70k, 50k and 20k races all taking in parts of the beautiful Swiss Alps.

Frenchman Aurélien Dunand-Pallaz took a narrow win in the 70km race, which has 4600m of elevation gain, by just over a minute and a half from Swiss athlete Ramon Manetsch, with another French athlete in Anne-Lise Rousset taking the women’s crown (and a top ten finish) by just under an hour.

Just as France won both Wild70 titles, Germany took two wins in the shorter Wild50 with Benedikt Hoffman and Daniela Oemus recording victories and securing their spots at the UTMB World Series finals for the OCC.

A German also took victory in the women’s Wild20, with Franziska Althaus picking up the win. Swiss runner Cesar Costa won the men’s race.

Wildstrubel by UTMB results

Wild110 men’s results

1. Andy Symonds (GBR) – 12:51:27
2. Baptiste Coatantiec (FRA) – 13:01:38
3. Gilles Roux (ITA) – 13:09:24

Wildstrubel110 women’s results

1. Sara Escobar-Carron (SWI) – 15:33:09
2. Kathrin Goetz (SWI) – 16:00:59
3. Charlotte D’Alencon (FRA) – 03:30:39

Patrick Ryan
Written by
Patrick Ryan
Patrick is a major contributor to TRI247 and RUN247. A keen hiker with wide experience in sports journalism, he has covered the Olympics and Commonwealth Games.

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