Vajin Armstrong gives us a little insight into his might set ahead of the Ultra Trail Mt Blanc (UTMB).
UTMB – La Grande Finale…
A dear friend of mine, Sri Chinmoy, once said “Greatness is a matter of a moment. Goodness is the work of a lifetime”. In my time away I have seen again and again the truth of this statement. Our society today is quick to praise the great, the rich and the powerful but does little to celebrate the good, the generous, the self giving and the kind. Being here in Chamonix, seeing the thousands of runners here ready to give their all, reminds me that although running is an individual sport, preparing for an ultra is a true team effort. Each person is here prepared to race, thanks not only to their own efforts in training, but also due to the sacrifices and love of their friends, family and loved ones.
For me the opportunity I have had to race here in Europe was the result of the generosity and kindness of my friends, family and sponsors. I would like to take this opportunity to offer my gratitude to all those that have helped to make this dream of mine a reality. One person in particular has gone above and beyond the call of duty and has really been the heart and soul of this tour. Prasasta, my wife deserves as much praise and credit for any results that I have achieved. It has only been thanks to her love, generosity and oneness that I have been able to race as well as I have.
Tomorrow I will be setting out on an epic trip around the big hill and I frankly couldn’t be more excited. UTMB has so much hype around it, I can’t wait to actually get underway and out onto the trails. Today was the race pack pick up and I was drug tested for the first time. I must have really made it to the big time now. Tomorrow we will be kicking it off at 4.30pm which is a couple of hours earlier than the usual start time. This is great as it gives us a good four hours of daylight to get into the race before we start the epic night. The weather forecast is good with highs in the low 20′s during the day dropping to 7 or 8 degrees overnight. So we should be all good to run the full course for the first time since 2009.
I hope to race smart and I realise that the race won’t really start until the sun rises on Saturday. I aim to go out at a solid but relaxed pace and aim to take really good care of myself throughout the night so I am ready to run hard when it matters. I am confident in my climbing and will be bringing my wizard sticks to help me save something for the final three climbs. I know there are a whole lot of big names here but I am focusing on just running to my potential. I also know if I run strong the whole way and put in a performance that I can be proud of, I am sure I will be in the mix. This race always goes out way to fast so expect me to start back in the field and move my way through.
Follow the race via BCR, UTMB website and all other reputable trail sources.
My bib number is 2211
Thank you to my sponsors Ultimate Direction, Macpac, Saucony, Buff, Injinji, Zensah.
UTMB Live Tracking, including live TV stream- HERE
iRunFar live UTMB updates HERE