The competitive calendar of the Spartan Trail World Championship (STWC), in its fifth stop, is moving to Åre, in the central region of Sweden. The charming mountain village with just over 12,000 inhabitants is the home of Kia Fjällmaraton, which vibrates with its natural beauty, its traditional architecture and its vast history being the land where the Vikings lived, owners of these latitudes for almost 400 years.
Therefore, between July 29th and August 5th, the most important race in that area of Europe begins the countdown to celebrate its eight distances (half marathon, Vertical Kilometer, 8k, 2x 12k, 27k, 45k and 100k) that make up this classic trail festival in the Northern Scandinavian fjords.
As part of the ULTRA championship of the Spartan Trail World Championship, the 100k (it will also award 4 ITRA points) will start next Thursday, August 3rd, where more than 130 trail runners will run 6,200 meters of elevation gain on rugged trails, surrounded by lush forests.
Åre has become one of the most popular places for nature lovers and outdoor sports. The rich geography that turns into white gold during winter with its ski slopes (for example, the 2019 Alpine Skiing World Championships were held there), the 100k were created in 2020 and, since then, they have become more challenging and popular in each edition.
The Kia Fjällmaraton, which this year will have its 19th anniversary, hopes to celebrate a real trail-party with the maximum distance that starts at dawn on Thursday, August 3rd.
To create an even more pleasant atmosphere in the finish area with a lot of public cheering at the runners, the Ottsjö 8K festival was moved to the afternoon of the same day seeking to unite the two distances in a festival that lasts all day long with live music and traditional food..
In 2022, American runner Noah Brautigam claimed victory (9h31m24s), followed by Viktor Stenqvist (10h16m35s) and John Lagerskog (10h18m21s). Among the women, Malin Barrulf (11h23m33s), Åsa Wiklund (12h38m49s), and Isabella Hedberg (14h48m11s) took the top spots.
Thus, surrounded by majestic mountains and lush forests, Åre will once again dress up for trail running in a week that will be etched in all participants’ hearts (with over 2000 runners in all distances).
The Fjällmaraton 100k will have over 130 runners, among whom stand out:
-Viktor Stenqvist: Winner of Ultravasan 90k in 2022, second at the 2022 Fjällmaraton 100k, and third at EcoTrail Stockholm this year.
-William Englund: Coming off a DNF at the EcoTrail Stockholm this season, but last year he finished fourth at the Fjällmaraton 100k and 16th at Mozart 100.
-Daniel Bränholm: In 2022, he won several races from 40 to 100k in Sweden; in 2021, he was a top 10 finisher at the 100k in Fjällmaraton.
-Erik Anfält: Finished fourth in the 2022 Ultravasan 90k.
-Dennis Källerteg: This year, he won the 44k Bocksten Trailrun, finished sixth at the 2022 Fjällmaraton 100k, and fourth at the 100 miles of Kullamannen.
-John Lagerskog: In 2022, he finished third in the Fjällmaraton 100k and fifth in 2021. This year, his goal is to make it to the podium.
-Lina El Kott Helander: Even though she hasn’t raced this season, Lina is an avid trail running, Skyrunning, and adventure racing competitor. She represented Sweden in the Short Trail and Uphill World Championships in Thailand 2022, came into the top 10 at the 2022 OCC, and won the vertical kilometer at the 2022 Fjällmaraton.
-Johanna Bygdell: This year, she won the 130k High Coast Ultra in Sweden, finished second at the 100 miles of Kullamannen in 2022, and was part of the Swedish UltraTrail team at the 2018 World Championships in Penyagolosa (16th) and Portugal 2019 (21st).
-Matilda Gend: Finished fifth at the EcoTrail Stockholm 2023 and second at the 2022 Kullamannen in 50k.
Each and every distance, with special emphasis on the 45k and 100k races, can be followed through Fjällmaraton’s social media channels: Fjällmaraton: Instagram, Facebook and the official race tracker.
The Spartan Trail World Championship (STWC)is a global championship with multiple stops around the world. Each race in the World Championship has multiple distances, with two selected to score in the final STWC Ranking in their respective categories.
The STWC features two simultaneous championships, each with a corresponding distance and events; an ULTRA championship (distances of 50 kilometers or more) and a TRAIL championship (distances up to 49 kilometers).
The 2023 season started in February with the successful Transgrancanaria, followed by the highly popular Patagonia Run in the Southern Cone, and continued with Maxi-Race Annecy in the heart of the Alps. It also recently took place in the lush tropical rainforest of Brisbane Trail Ultra.
Now, in the heart of European summer, the Spartan Trail World Championship moves to Sweden, a land with a rich history closely tied to nature. Kia Fjällmaraton Årefjällen, Sweden’s most prestigious mountain race, offers the chance to be part of STWC 2023 with the Kia Fjällmaraton 45Kfor the TRAIL category and the 100k for the ULTRA category.
The 2023 season will have 9 events worldwide, offering points for the final ranking of the Championship. Each event will have a valid distance for the ULTRA championship and another for the TRAIL championship. The events included are Transgrancanaria, Patagonia Run, Maxi-Race Annecy, Brisbane Trail Ultra, Fjällmaraton, Salomon Ultra Pirineu, Borneo Trail Classic, Shinshiro Trail Classic and Golden Gate Trail Classic.
The STWC will have cash prizes for the overall rankings in both the male and female categories.