500 people participate in RAK trail run event

Budding athletes from 45 nationalities traversed the dirt tracks and winding trails for the 5, 10 and 15-kilometre distances under the guidance of professional runners.

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DUBAI // Five-hundred runners took part in a trail running event at Wadi Al Shawka near Ras Al Khaimah on Friday night.

Budding athletes from 45 nationalities traversed the dirt tracks and winding trails for the 5, 10 and 15-kilometre distances under the guidance of professional runners.

The 15km run was dominated by James Buchanan, who finished in a time of 64 minutes, followed by Gerald Routier and Xavier Monbaillard. Bart O’Doherty, Leonardo Pace and Si Pepper took first, second and third place respectively in the 10km distance, while Augustin Applegate, Ed Brown and Roisin Thomas recorded the top times for the 5km.

“Trail running has seen huge growth in popularity and demand with the UAE’s desert landscape providing the ideal terrain,” said Miquel Pancorbo, chief operating officer of Sports Division, Gulf Marketing Group, which organised the The North Face Night Rock Run.

“It is overwhelming to see tenfold growth in the number of participants since hosting 50 runners at the first UAE trail running event a year ago.

“We were delighted to see ages ranging from 6 to 70, as well as an equal number of men and women taking part in a sport that is typically male-dominated.”

Professional trail runner Clare Mullenger said: “Trail running provides an opportunity to explore and experience so much more of the UAE’s beautiful and diverse landscape, from mountains and wadis, to farms and villages.”

arizvi2@thenational.ae