May 27 – World Championships 2017 -  Guangzhou - June 17

The highlight of the year is only three weeks away. Find some condensed information at
This page will be updated continuously - stay tuned !

The athletes reaching the top of Canton Tower first in the Final Heat will top the next edition of our Table of Honor too. 
More info about the participating challengers next time.

Just one hint regarding the race day timetable, which is still in preparation. Final challenge after three very hard heats and the victory ceremony will be a beer party ...

Towerrunning Trivia: Nearly all of our indoor race venues have elevators. In 1870 the first building with passenger elevators was the 7 story  Equitable Life Building in New York.

May 13 – Race Report - Subida Vertical Gran Hotel Bali - Benidorm       Gallery coming

One month before the Guangzhou World Championships many elite athletes travelled to the Spanish Costa Blanca to participate in the 14th Subida Vertical Gran Hotel Bali. This well organized traditional race is special in some ways. The technical raw data are 924 stairs with 52 stories and the venue is the tallest building at the European Mediterranean coast. Like in some other hotel races start is in the lobby and the finish line out in the open at 186m, but the track at Gran Hotel Bali is not the standard hidden stairwell.   

The first race floors from the lobby and the last up to the roof (even leading through a hotel suite) are "irregular", but the rest has the following constant stairography: 3 -12 - 3 - flat with 90° left turns. Now imagine a 780 room hotel with a capacity of 2000 guests, then naturally there always is lots of action before the main elevators. And the flat part of a race story exactly passes this space, where guests are waiting for the elevators. Subida Vertical Gran Hotel Bali is a race amidst hotel life with potential people cheering (or doing other unexpected things) all along the track !

After a few houndred participants and firefighters finally the elite athletes climbed with an interval of 30 seconds. In the female race we saw a clear win by Czech top favorite Lenka Svabikova repeating her victory of 2015 with a time of 5:56. 20 seconds behind two Spanish home athletes battled for runner up with 2014 champion Rosi Llorens Zafra having the better end over Maria Beltran Toledo. 4th place went to Spain too with Sofia Garcia Bardoll. Only divided by a few seconds Maria Elisa Lopez from Mexico placed 5th followed by Dominika Wisniewska-Ulfik from Poland, who is successfully resuming her career after giving birth just a few month ago. Another prominent racer came 2nd, the Italian 2011 Towerrunning Champion Cristina Bonacina in her 98th stair race within the last ten years.
The tension was great before the male race. All the top 9 athletes from the current ranking were registered, just 4th Tomas Celko, the 2015 champion from Slovakia had to resign before due to injury. Everybody was expecting another duel between the German defending champion and course record holder  Christian Riedl and ranking leader Piotr Lobodzinski from Poland. This time the reigning World Champion from Poland in 4:26 had the better end over the reigning European Champion, who needed 4:34. And between these two Frank Nicolas Carreno (COL) raced to the runner up place in 4:29. Stefan Stefina (SVK - 4:38) came in 4th beating narrowly the fastest home  athlete Antonio Martinez Perez. With 4:45 Gustavo Isaac Mendoza from Mexico and Görge Heimann from Germany folowed on 6 and 7.

Thanks to the hotel owners as well as Miquel Tortosa and his team for making this great event possible ! Next stop of the Towerrunning Tour is Frankfurt on June 11 just one week before the season highlight at Guangzhou ...

May 13 - Subida Vertical Gran Hotel Bali  - Benidorm  Tot 7      

1 Lenka Svabikova (CZE) 5:56
2 Rosi Llorens Zafra (ESP) 6:16
3 Maria Beltran Toledo (ESP) 6:16
4 Sofia Garcia Bardoll (ESP) 6:20
5 Maria Elisa Lopez (MEX) 6:30
6 Dominika Wisniewska-Ulfik (POL) 6:33
7 Cristina Bonacina (ITA) 6:34

1 Piotr Lobodzinski (POL) 4:26
2 Frank Nicolas Carreno (COL) 4:29
3 Christian Riedl (GER) 4:34
4 Stefan Stefina (SVK) 4:38
5 Antonio Martinez Perez (ESP) 4:38
6 Gustavo Isaac Mendoza (MEX) 4:45
7 Görge Heimann (GER) 4:45

May 7 – Race Report Asian & Oceanian Championships 2017 -  Taipei 101 Run Up

The second Towerrunning Asian and Oceanian Championships were held last Sunday as part of the annual Taipei 101 Run Up.  The 13th edition of the famous race, still regarded by most as the toughest on the Tour, attracted around 5,000 participants from 36 countries, who climbed 91 floors, 2,046 steps and 391m in vertical height to reach the observation deck.  The top regional athletes attended: including the strong Australian contingent and the leading Chinese athletes.  The Australian duo of Mark Bourne and Suzy Walsham lived up to pre-race expectations with both winning by more than one minute, although neither came close to the course records (set in the inaugural race in 2005) and the €6,000 incentive bonus.

In the men’s race, despite some illness, Mark Bourne had a convincing victory in 11:24 to take his first Championship gold.  “I wasn’t quite in record shape today, but I am very happy to come away with a win in the Championships” Bourne said.  “I would love to come back next year and have another crack at the record.” Fellow Australian and orienteering specialist Leon Keely was a surprise second in 12:33 while Taipei athlete Chun-Gu Kuo came in third in 12:52. “It was awesome to compete here and now I am looking forward to the World Championships next month” said Keely.  A further five local athletes featured in the top 10, as well as the two Chinese athletes Kaiyue Fu and Jiajing Ou who came in 6th and 12th respectively.

In the women’s race, Walsham successfully defended her Championship gold from 2015, winning in 13:36. “I’ve had a busy couple of weeks with a lot of travel so I was a bit flat today, but still super happy to win and defend my Asian and Oceanian gold from two years ago” said Walsham.  Fellow Australian and last year’s race winner Alice McNamara was a gallant second in 14:58, “I’ve had a chest infection for over a week so today was tough, but really happy to get the silver” said McNamara.  Taipei runner Shih, Ching-Huei scored the final podium position with a time of 16:11. Chinese athlete Fengjuan Fan finished 4th, while Australia’s Cindy Reid 5th.

A highlight of the event was the awarding of a lifetime achievement award to Paul Crake (AUS).  Crake is a legend of the sport and still holds the course record at Taipei 101 of 10:29. (His 2006 race was only 2 seconds slower at 10:31). The athletes were thrilled with his attendance at the event and the chance to get some tips on the sport of Towerrunning. Being a regional championship, the race was a Towerrunning 200 event, with top placed athletes securing valuable Towerrunning Tour ranking points, as well as a share in the €10,000 prize pool.  In addition, the two bronze medallists from Chinese Taipei also received an official invitation to next month’s World Championships.

May 3 – Preview Asian & Oceanian Championships 2017 -  Taipei - May 7

The second Towerrunning Asian & Oceanian Championships will take place on May 7 at the iconic Taipei 101. The building is a landmark super tall skyscraper in the Xinyi district of Taipei and until 2010 was the world’s tallest building, reaching 508m to the top of the spire.  Construction started in 1999 and the height of 101 floors commemorates the renewal of time: the new century that arrives as the tower was built (100+1) and all the new years that follow (1 January = 1-01). Although the highest occupied floor is 438m above ground, the athletes will “only” have to climb the 2,046 steps to the outdoor observation deck on level 91, 391 metres above ground.

Looking back at the first AOC 2015 in Guangzhou both titles went to Australia with Chinese athletes taking all the other medals then. This year the odds are the same. We have clear Australian favourites with strong Chinese athletes challenging them and some local talent aiming for surprise with the home factor.  And  there is an extra bonus of 6000 € for any athlete breaking the still existing course records from the inaugural Run Up in 2005 of 10:29 (Paul Crake - AUS) and 12:38 (Andrea Mayr - AUT). The 101 is proud to be the venue of the Championships and looking forward a great race !

Info: Taipei 101 Run Up: Top 3 from 2005 to 2016

April 8 - Race Report: Valtellina Vertical Tube Race  - Sondrio       

The only outdoor stair race in the Towerrunning Tour 2017 - let's consider the Eiffel tower race not as an outdoor run because it has all typical characteristics of an indoor run - took place in lovely Valtellina near Sondrio. Because the race track goes straight along a water tube the event is called Vertical Tube race. Like in previous years the third edition was a battle between international well recognized Towerrunning specialists and the very strong Italian mountain runners. And again the first group led by Tomas Celko and Stefan Stefina did not really have a chance to fight for victory. After being runner-up last year Hannes Perkmann changed position with defending champion Francesco Puppi (both ITA). The winning time of 14:15 minutes for exactly 500 meters of climb and 2713 steps was just 13 seconds slower than the course record. The surprise of the day was maybe Jakob Mayer from Austria. Already well known for his stair running abilities (e.g. place 4 in the TWA World Championships 2015) he may have benefited from his mountain running experience (e.g. part of the Austrian national team).

In absence of the injured dominator of previous years, Emmie Collinge (GBR), again an Italian resident athlete with foreign nationality has been victorious in the female category. Katarzyna Kuzminska (POL) with a time of 17:48 minutes was just 5 seconds ahead of Valentina Belotti. Another 7 seconds behind Francesca Bellezza (both ITA) completed the podium.

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