The final race of the 2022 World Mountain and Trail Running Championship, the Classic (uphill & downhill) Mountain race, closed out a weekend of phenomenal racing by athletes from across the globe. The lollipop course was flat for roughly a kilometer before sending the athletes straight uphill for 475 meters (1,558 feet) then launching them back downhill to the finish, for a total of 10.7-kilometers (6.6 miles). Missing a few favorites, notably Grayson Murphy (who did not make the trip due to injury) and Vertical/Uphill top-five finishers Joe Gray and Andrea Mayr from Friday’s event the podium had a few more steps open than usual. There’s a little more to the story – but let’s just start with, it was a day for Uganda.
Uganda was close to sweeping the women’s race with Rebecca Cheptegei and Annet Chelangat Chemengich going 1-2 in 46:25 and 46:52 respectively – if their teammate Rispa Cherop hadn’t collapsed less than a mile from the finish the podium would have been a sea of the yellow, red, and brown from the Ugandan kits. In third was Friday’s Uphill World Champion, Allie McLaughlin, in 48:31 helping to secure a bronze medal finish for Team USA in the process. Winning the women’s team competition was Switzerland led by a 6th place finish from Judith Wyder, the team from Great Britain took second. Complete results can be found here.
You might be thinking – where was Uganda on Friday? Well it turns out the men’s transport to the race took them to the wrong location on the mountain. A mistake that could and should have been avoidable, but for what they missed on Friday they made up for during Sunday’s race. Not only did they win the men’s team competition they took four of the top five positions with Samuel Kibet taking the win in 40:02, Timothy Toroitich in 3rd in 40:26, Leonard Chemonges 4th in 40:51, and Elide Cherop in 41:27. The only man to ruin Ugandas otherwise perfect day was Friday’s Uphill World Champion, Kenya’s Patrick Kipngeno in 2nd at 40:12. Behind Uganda in the team competition was Spain in Italy, the US men’s team finished 9th on the day. Complete results can be found here.
Want to relive action from the rest of the week?
Find the 40-kilometer and 80-kilometer action here.
Find the crowning of the uphill champions here.
Relive the opening ceremonies here.
Follow along as the women’s 40-kilometer team previews the course.
Welcome Team USA to Thailand with us as they take their first runnings steps in a new place – here.