World Trail Running Majors Announces Events | Sports Destination Management

World Trail Running Majors Announces Events

Dec 27, 2023

The World Trail Majors calendar and scoring system has been confirmed, ahead of the international series getting under way in 2024.

The series spans Asia, Europe, Africa and North America, and includes the following events:

  • Anta Hong Kong 100 Ultramarathon: 102 km, +5314 m
  • Black Canyon Ultras: 100 km, +1250 m
  • The North Face Transgrancanaria: 126 km, +6804 m
  • Mt FUJI 100: 165 km, +7574 m
  • MIUT – Madeira Island Ultra-Trail: 115 km, +7100 m
  • Swiss Canyon Trail: 111 km, +5350 m
  • South Downs Way: 161 km, +3800 m
  • Quebec Mega Trail: 160 km, +6500 m
  • RMB Ultra-Trail Cape Town: 166 km, +7516 m

According to the team behind the series… ‘For amateur runners, the World Trail Majors can be seen as a once in a lifetime list of races, suggestions for your ‘bucket list’ of events; but also all the races will be part of an annual ranking for those who have that competitive drive.’

As an addition to the annual ranking system, the series will also keep records for runners to create an ongoing leaderboard. More information on how this system will be managed will be released in due course.

World Trail Majors will be using a hybrid scoring system. For most athletes, the series will use the already established ITRA system, as a ‘reference body for trail running’.

A release from the World Trail Majors added… ‘Following conversations with the PTRA (Professional Trail Runners Association) we wanted a more predictable points system to make it fairer for comparison and ranking amongst elite runners and races.

‘This allows runners to easily calculate what position they must finish in a race for their final overall ranking. Therefore, the top 20 in each race will be scored as per the table below and 21st onwards will be ITRA points.’

The World Trail Majors team argues that using this hybrid scoring gives a ‘best of both’ system because:

  • The ITRA score is a simple, well known, tested and established system.
  • The ITRA Performance Index is the official trail running world ranking recognized by World Athletics.
  • Points for each race are based on performance at that race.
  • The ITRA algorithm is continuously re-assessed so it improves race by race.
  • Elites can easily calculate where they need to finish to achieve a specific final score.
  • It is almost impossible to have a tie.
  • The scoring is not in the control of World Trail Majors who cannot modify it at their convenience or according to their own interests.

If there is a tie at the end of the season, something possible for elite runners, but less likely for amateurs, the runner with the best combined ITRA race score will be placed ahead.

If runners are still tied, the prize fund for their positions will be added up and divided equally, i.e. if first prize is €5000 and second is €3000, each runner will receive (5000 + 3000) / 2 = €4000.

To obtain an objective ranking of elite runners, the ITRA Performance Index will be used as it is an independent scoring system, widely used and accepted, so it is seen to be most suitable.

Given the high physical demand that long distance running races require, the sum of the two best results count for scoring in the World Trail Majors. A runner can do as many races as they wish during the year, but a lower number of races has been adopted for accumulating points, to consider the health and wellbeing of runners. To be eligible for the series, participation in one race is sufficient.

Runners will also be ranked in age groups based on their age at the end of the year (December 31, 2024 in the case of the first edition of the World Trail Majors). Age groups will be:

  • Under 25 M/F (under 25)
  • Seniors M/F (25-39)
  • Master 40 M/F (40-49)
  • Master 50 M/F (50-59)
  • Master 60 M/F (60+)

With a final note on the prize pool, the series organisers added… ‘The reason we have not announced a prize table for the podium athletes yet is because there is a possibility that additional sponsors may add to the pot. We are working to reward podium performances as well as possible. Regardless of additional sponsors, World Trail Majors has allocated a budget for the prize fund for the top runners. This will be confirmed in due course.’

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