713 runners started the ZUT under slightly cloudy skies at 0715 on 21 June. Temperatures were cool, but bearable considering the alpine environment. As the day progressed we were treated to ideal running conditions under mild sunny conditions.
As the old adage goes… Pictures tell a thousand words. I’ll let some of the impressions frame a bit of this report from here…
501 runners finished the ZUT within the allotted twenty-six hours. Although, cut off times at each check point and the overall time limit are generous, the demands of this alpine ultra take their toll on the uninitiated. I don’t recommend this race as a first 100KM or alpine event. Plan B offers four races under the capstone of the ZUT. These include the 100KM Ultratrail, 79KM Supertrail XL, 60KM Supertrail and 35.6KM Basetrail. Each demands a certain level of ultra running and alpine experience. None are for the uninitiated.
The top finishers put on an amazing show in 2014. Twenty-eight year old Stephan Hugenschmidt of Radolfzell was the overall winner with a teeth gnashing finish in 10:35:50. Among the women, forty year old Anne-Marie Flammersfeld dominated the finish in 13:53:21. I walked away feeling way too good with a 22:15:03 finish. Unique in corporately hosted and sponsored events the ZUT and Plan B have developed an “every racer is an important part of this event” attitude. The final finishers were greeted and celebrated with as much hullabaloo as those at the top. Celebration of all continued well after everyone had left Grainau on the Zugspitze Ultra Facebook and Web sites.
As each day passes since my 2014 ZUT finish I yearn to get back out on the trail and run this amazing race again. Plan B – Count me in for 2015!