Hiroki Ishikawa took 2nd place in Spain’s 80km Ultimafrontera 160. Recently, Spain is becoming known for its strong trail runners. Hiroki also commented that this race was merely research and will adjust his conditioning for the next race, the Red Rock 50 mile in Santa Barbara in late November. He wore Montrail Bajadas during the race.
A little about the Ultimafrontera 160:
The popularity of the international multi-day stage race Al Andalus Ultimate Trail, which draws some of the world’s best Ultra stage-racers to the southern Poniente de Granada, helped inspire the development of a race in the northern part of the region. The Poniente de Granada is known as the Last Frontier of Moorish Iberia, historically referred to as Al Andalus. The Christian conquest of these lands in the 1480’s saw the fall of the Nazarine Kingdom of Granada, and consequent fall of Muslim domination in the Iberian Peninsular. The Ultima Frontera 160 route takes you through a number of the fortified towns which made up this final line of defense.
Montefrio, in the Parapanda Mountains, was a natural frontier of the Nazarine Kingdom. In June 1486, it became the final conquest in the whole territory, leading to the definitive victory of the Catholic Kings over Islam. Some of the castle and its battlements remain, as well as the cistern and some stretches of wall. This is the furthest north the race goes. CP3 (48km/128km), at Hotel La Enrea, will have hot food and drink available. Drop-bags will be available at CP3 (48km/128km).
This time, rather than a staged race in hot, desert-like conditions, it was a weekend of ultra events, for those who enjoy single stage ultras. Races included a 50km, for those looking to make the step from marathon to ultra, an 80km, and 160km (80km loop two times), which equals 100 miles, a distance very popular in the USA. Upon completion, the 80km distance earns 2 points, and the 160km earns 4 points, towards Europe’s famous Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc, which requires that competitors have previous experience with extreme running.
Congratulations Hiroki for the amazing second place finish!