MIGUEL HERAS WINS THE EVEREST TRAIL RACE BY THE ELEMENTS
Miguel Heras (The Elements) wins the competition after the duel with SummanKulung and is the second western runner to win the Everest Trail Race by The Elements. Catalan runner Jordi Gamito finished third overall. The Nepalese runner Phurwa Sherpa wins the women's category.
The strategy of Miguel Heras (The Elements) for the last stage was clear: to follow SummanKulung, the Nepalese runner second in the general classification, more than 13 minutes behind the runner from Bejar. He was the only one who could snatch the final victory in a sixth and last stage of 29 km between Tyangboche and Lukla with more than 4,500 metres of accumulated altitude gain and 2,800m of altitude gain on the downhills, Kulung's speciality. The Nepalese runner had already won two editions of the Everest Trail Race by The Elements. The stage brought with it nerves and intensity for Heras who managed to keep up with Kulung's pace and in the places where transport animals (yaks, mules, cows) were found and where they had to wait, they were not decisive. The two stopped machines and chatted with each other. On the descents, Kulung launched himself to leave Heras behind, but the rider from Bejarano stuck to his wake so as not to lose ground at any moment. With 5 km to go, the Nepalese rider had already given up the fight and slowed down the pace. The signalling reinforcement to avoid getting lost in the always complex Namche Bazar, the Sherpa capital, was perfect and Miguel Heras achieved the so desired victory in the general classification that he has led during the 6 days of competition. The two arrived together at the finish line in Lukla. Kulung won the stage and Miguel Heras the tenth edition of the Everest Trail Race by The Elements. "We are mountaineers and we have come to run in the Himalayas, it is the best of the best. It's the ultimate for people who like to run. I've made 35-40 friends in the camp", said Heras, happy with his triumph. The runner from Béjar takes over from Jordi Gamito who in 2018 was the first westerner able to win in Nepal over a local runner.
In the women's category, Phurwa Sherpa was very limited due to an ankle injury. She was advised not to compete, but the young athlete wanted to finish the race for the first time. She won the stage and also the general classification in an extraordinary way. Second place went to the Argentinian runner María Silvina Pérez, almost an hour behind Sherpa. "One of the most difficult races of my life and also one of the most amazing. The landscapes, the camp, the companions and the staff are the most beautiful things that have happened to me in my life", explained Pérez at the finish line. Third was the Portuguese athlete Ester Alves (SWE) who after participating for the second time in the Everest Trail Race by The Elements said: "It is the hardest race I have ever done in my life". Maigualida Ojeda, the only Spanish representative in the women's category, finished eighth. Tears of emotion were shed among the participants who embraced each other at the finish line in Lukla after 6 stages, 170km and 26,000 metres of accumulated altitude gain. Namaste to all of them.