Ryan Sandes will again be returning to the Ultra Trail Mont Blanc Festival later this month, but this time will be tackling the 145km TDS route as preparation for his 160km UTMB race in 2020. Over the years the event has become Sandes nemesis and he is hoping the TDS route will allow him to master the European Trail running conditions before coming back next year.
“I am really excited to be running TDS this year, I believe this will give me the experience I need on the European trails,” says Sandes. “I am feeling strong and positive about the race, and hope to get the best result possible and have a great day out in the mountain. I haven’t had the best races at UTMB in the past, so I am looking forward to getting out there and getting on the front foot!”
Top names joining Ryan at the 2019 start line include French runner Ludovic Pommeret, a previous UTMB winner; Spaniard, Tofol Castaner Bernat, previous CCC winner and 2nd place at UTMB and Russian, Dmitry Mityaev, who took 3rd place at TDS in 2018.
TDS, an acronym for Traces des Ducs de Savoie (the footprints of the Dukes of Savoie), follows his journey from Courmayeur to Charmonix, will take place on Wednesday, 28 August. The 2019 edition of the race has been lengthened by 23km to 145km with an astounding 9100m of elevation gain and will now take runners through the exquisite Beaufortain region. The new addition allows for easy adjustments in the case of extreme weather conditions with several options that will take runners as close to the original route as possible and not only increases the distance by 23km but also adds 1800m of elevation gain.
For more information on the race please visit www.ultratrailmb.com for live coverage on race day, and follow Ryan live on his Facebook Page @Ryan.Nicholas.Sandes, Twitter and Instagram account @RyanSandes.