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Running at the ‘End of the World’: new USHUAIA by UTMB in Argentina

UTMB International, the international division of the world-renowned Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc (UTMB), has announced a new spring 2019 UTMB International ultramarathon trail race in Ushuaia, Argentina. USHUAIA by UTMB will be held on April 5-7, 2019, and will offer four distances covering 35-130 km over an inspiring and formidable landscape that has come to be known as the ‘End of the World’.

USHUAIA by UTMB will take runners into remote corners of the southernmost reaches of the South American continent. The UTMB organising team note that the city of Ushuaia in Argentina literally exists at the ‘end of the road’ and borders the world-renowned Tierra del Fuego National Park.

Trails will traverse technical terrain, diverse landscapes and a range of climates. Runners should expect to be prepared to encounter 4-seasons of weather in a single day (as temps ranging from 60-30 Fahrenheit are typical), as well as long and exposed climbs, and ‘semi-autonomous’ trail running.

Over the past 15 years, UTMB Mont-Blanc has become a bucket list international running event known to attract a spectrum of athletes and exhibiting beautiful landscapes and challenging trails.

UTMB International was created to expand the UTMB brand across the globe and offer UTMB-quality race opportunities to a greater number of athletes.

Ushuaia by UTMB race distances:

  • Fin del Mundo Ultra (FMU): 130 km / 8200m of vertical gain
  • Five Brothers Trail (FBT): 70 km / 5400m of vertical gain
  • La Cloche Trail (LCT): 50 km / 3000m of vertical gain
  • Esmeralda Lagoon Trail (ELT): 35 km / 2400m of vertical gain

Services for runners and support teams
To improve the race experience for runners and support teams and to maximize participant safety, Ushuaia by UTMB organizers will make the following services available:

LiveTrail: A tool for following the runners, to estimate course times, to provide a list of favourites, interactive race profiles, comparisons between runners, live coverage of race leaders and live results.

LiveInfo: A reference app for accompanying supporters on the ground. Here supporters can look for a runner, follow the race leader, estimate the time of passage through the next checkpoint, list the favourites, and receive notifications of times of passage in real time.

UTMB qualifying points
ITRA points obtained on all Ushuaia by UTMB courses will be valid for three years (instead of two) for the UTMB MONT-BLANC lottery. Additionally, finishers of the longer course (130km) will gain a year in the registration process if they are interested to participate in the 2020 UTMB Mont-Blanc. Every UTMB event finisher will double their chances in the lottery if registering for the first time, or will be guaranteed a spot if they were unsuccessful when trying to register for the prior year’s edition.

Ushuaia Argentina + Tierra del Fuego National Park
Ushuaia has a variety of hotel facilities, from the hostel to a ‘five-star palace’, to local bed and breakfast accommodation. With an international airport located in the centre of Ushuaia, Buenos Aires is a 3-hour direct flight away. The city of Ushuaia will host the start and finish for every race, as well as all event festivities.

From Ushuaia, UTMB International adds that it’s easy to visit Argentina’s world-famous Tierra del Fuego National Park. Sailboats and ships make it possible to tour the Beagle Channel to view cormorants, Magellanic penguins, sea lions on the surrounding islands, to discover the glaciers of the Darwin mountain range, or sail around Cape Horn.

Daniel Catania, Race Director of USHUAIA by UTMB said “USHUAIA by UTMB will be a truly special trail running event which takes runners into the remote and wild areas of the ‘End of the World’. As the other events of the UTMB calendar, this event is based on the runners’ semi autonomy.”

He continued, “Climbs are long and at times exposed, requiring runners to be confident in altitude. The climate in the southern mountains of the Andes (1000 to 1500m high) is similar to the one that can be found in the Alps at 2500-3000m high. April temperatures during daytime may reach 10-15°C in the valleys. In the mountains, where most of the trail is located, it is much lower, and runners might find themselves experiencing the four seasons of the year in just one day. Temperatures below freezing may be expected at night, so runners will need to equip accordingly.

“In short, it will be a technical trail, with big ‘ups and downs’, diverse geographies, changing landscapes and an oscillating climate.”

UTMB International was created to help spread the influence of the world-renowned ultra-trail running race, UTMB (Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc), worldwide. Over the next 10 years the organization plans to work with international partners to establish major events on every continent. The goal is to organize summits embracing local traditions while maintaining the professional standards of the original UTMB.

Each event will take place in a mountainous region and will feature multiple formats to attract athletes of all abilities.

UTMB race schedule:

  • OMAN by UTMB: November 29 – December 1, 2018
  • USHUAIA by UTMB: April 5-7, 2019
  • UTMB Mont-Blanc: August 26 to September 1, 2019
  • OMAN by UTMB: autumn/fall 2019
  • GAOLIGONG by UTMB: March 21-23, 2020




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