New registration requirements for the UTMB®
The UTMB® is one of the most awaited trail-running events in the whole world and it is preparing for the 17h annual edition.
The famous Chamonix competition reached a new registration record in January when over 25,000 people registered for the UTMB® 2019.
However, when the registration results were announced, over 15,000 people got bad news, as there were only 10,000 race bibs available for the UTMB® 2019.
The oversubscription problem cannot be fixed by adding "more competitors to the races", explains organizer Catherine Poletti, because "we must take care of the narrow trails that we run on and there are also administrative reasons".
Thus, the organizers have implemented changes to the registration requirements, to ensure that every candidate gets a real chance in the long run.
Reduced number of ITRA points
The Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc registration process is based on ITRA points. Precisely, candidates need to collect enough "points" to be allowed to enter the lottery.
ITRA stands for International Trail Running Association and it is a system to point accredited races, based on distance, elevation gain, difficulty and other criteria.
As of 2020, the number of ITRA points required for each race will lower as follows - 10 points for the UTMB (down from 15), eight points for the 145km TDS (same as before), six points for the 100km CCC (down from eight), four points for the OCC (down from six) and none for the PTL and MCC.
“The probability of being selected is proportional to the number of times a runner has failed to gain entry in the previous years,” the UTMB® said.
The 18th edition of the Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc will bring another change in the registration requirements.
Starting from 2020, the candidates who are unsuccessful in the lottery will gain "tickets" and those tickets will improve their chances of being selected the following year.
Basically, the chances of being selected double the second year you participate in the lottery and then triple the year after.
The tickets can be accumulated and the candidate will not lose their lottery advantage if they take one year break from applying to the lottery of the UTMB®, thus fixing the issue of "female participants pregnancy", said Michel Poletti.
Now, a female candidate can come back after the pregnancy, without losing her place in the registration.
The tickets have a lifetime availability and they expire only when the candidate is finally a winner at the registration lottery.
UTMB® introduces "running stones".
In addition to the ITRA points and the tickets, the UTMB® will implement a new system from 2020, called "running stones".
The running stones are handed out to those who finish the "By UTMB" events such as Oman by UTMB, but also selected Ultra-Trail World Tour (UTWT) Events.
The running stones can bypass the lottery as follows - 18 running stones will guarantee entry into the UTMB®, 15 into TDS and CCC and 12 for OCC.
Note! In addition to the running stones, the runner must also have the ITRA points required to participate in the lottery.
Only by meeting these two conditions the athlete will be guaranteed a place in the desired race.
Read more about the new registration requirements for the UTMB®.