On May 14th 2013, Matheo Jacquemoud, a french ski mountaineer, broke the Mont-Blanc Summit speed record with an ascent and descent time of 5 hours 5 minutes.
Jacquemond beats the previous ski record by 10 minutes, a record set almost 10 years earlier, on 30 May 2003, by Stéphane Brosse and Pierre Gignoux.
Their Chamonix Church to Church return time was 5 hours 15 minutes.
Also, Jacquemond beats the incredible running record set by the Swiss, Pierre-André Gobet. On 21st July 1990 Gobet ran from the Eglise to the Summit of Mont-Blanc and back to the church in a staggering 5 hours 10 minutes and 14 seconds.
Jacquemoud's record attempt was planned with his friend Kilian Jornet, but given the weather forecast and the opportunity window, Matheo decided to attempt the record without Journet (Kilian was engaged in the Transvulcania, a trail running race on the Canary Islands, Spain).
The attempt commenced from the Église Saint-Michel at 05:45hrs in the company of one other, an italian skier Filippo Beccari. Jacquemoud & Beccari had no support team.
The route began with a run, (skis strapped to their backs) from Chamonix to the entrance of the Mont-Blanc Tunnel, continuing on up to the Grands Mulets where Jacquemoud upped the pace and pulled away from Beccari. Jacquemoud continued on alone by way of the Petit & Grand Plateaux, the Vallot Hut and the Summit. The descent was by way of the the Jonction and the entrance to the Mont-Blanc Tunnel.
Close to the summit, conditions were tough:
- the snow had a hard crust with a very irregular surface, slowing the progress of the athlete
- weather conditions were not exceptional, with a cold wind and temperatures down to -20°C
Despite this, Jacquemoud prevailed, to claim a new Chamonix => Mont-Blanc Summit => Chamonix, speed record of 05 hrs : 05 mins.