Muscat, High demand for a place in the first

ever OMAN by Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc (UTMB�) event has seen

hundreds of runners sign up, including many of the best-known

members of the international ultra-trail community.

With places filling up and the number of runners now exceeding

300, registration for a sought-after place in the 29 November event will

stay open until the final entry cut-off on 30 September.

Among the elite runners registered for the newest addition to the

UTMB� calendar are the USA’s Jim Walmsley, the 2017 Ultra Runner

of the Year and currently the world number one in the ITRA rankings.

Joining him on the non-stop 137km event will be the

Lithuanian-born 2016 Ultra Trail World Tour champion Gediminas

Grinius, and the Swiss 2017 Ultra Trail World Tour champion Andrea


Also among the athletes representing no fewer than 49

countries are: Jason Schlarb, the top US finisher in the 2014 UTMB�

Mont Blanc; former Swedish track athlete Ida Nilsson; Swiss runner

Diego ‘Zpeedy’ Pazos, aka the ‘bow tie trail runner’; and Wyoming-

based Meredith Edwards, one of the leading female runners on the

circuit. In addition, other familiar faces are expected to include Chinese

national and Hong Kong resident Tsang Siu Keung Stone, one of the

most successful trail runners in Asia, plus others from the growing trail

running community in China.

Ultra-trail runners enjoy the challenge of mountain courses and the

beauty of the natural environment, and judging by the rush to enter,

OMAN by UTMB� appears to have captured that enthusiasm in full,

said Salma al-Hashmi, Oman Sail Chief Marketing Officer.

The authentic and unique landscapes of the Sultanate, particularly the

route that takes in the heights of Jebel Akhdar or the Green Mountain

in the Wilayat of Nizwa, will provide an exciting and competitive event

for hundreds who have seized the opportunity to take part in this first


OMAN by UTMB�, hosted by event organiser Oman Sail and

supported by UTMB� International and the organisers of UTMB�

Mont-Blanc, will take the growing field on a remote and rugged course,

with long and technical climbs and a total vertical gain of more than


UTMB� founder Michel Poletti was a member of the team that

designed the course: The Sultanate is like no other place I’ve run

before, the spectacular scenery, incredible mountains and warm

people make this a must-do event, he said.

Having had the opportunity to revisit Oman I can now add that the

country has a fantastic amount to offer visitors, it is very safe, with

much to see and do that the whole family can enjoy, added the UTMB

Mont-Blanc Race Director.

The special benefits of participation in OMAN by UTMB�for

those hoping to run in the heavily-oversubscribed UTMB� Mont-Blanc

will apply to all registrations up to the cut-off.

Finishers will earn the maximum number of six qualifying points,

valid for three years instead of the usual two, and will save one year in

the UTMB� Mont-Blanc registration process. This will double the

chance for first-time applicants in the entry lottery for 2019, and

guarantee entry for those reapplying a second time after being

unsuccessful in 2018.

OMAN by UTMB� is a Tanfeedh initiative and is supported by

the Ministry of Tourism.

Source: Oman News Agency