As the inaugural UTMB World Series gets into full swing this year with 25 events scheduled in 2022 and thousands of runners across the world signed up, the series is already looking ahead to 2023.
Continuing the expansion of the global trail running circuit, the series organising team at UTMB and IRONMAN have confirmed… ‘The first of many new events to be announced for next year, Amazean Jungle Thailand by UTMB will offer runners an adventure through the unchartered jungle of Betong, southern Thailand.’
The new event will join the UTMB World Series in 2023. It will become the second event in the country alongside Doi Inthanon Thailand by UTMB, giving Asia-Pacific runners more opportunities to live the UTMB experience and collect Running Stones to access UTMB Mont-Blanc and the UTMB World Series Finals.
The event will be held in Betong – seen as a unique destination for a trail running race, deep in the jungle in southern Thailand near the Malaysian border. There are three race distances – 100km, 50km and 25km.
Runners in the 100km race will experience a course that takes them below the lush forest and through the hidden Piyamit Tunnel system, built by the now-defunct Malaya Communist Party in 1979 to hide from airstrikes and store supplies. Hot springs and the Intasorn Waterfall will also be highlights on the longest race distance.
Following a test event in early May, UTMB Group Chairwoman Catherine Poletti said that Amazean Jungle Thailand by UTMB met all the criteria to become a UTMB World Series event. “At UTMB World Series, our global events are the best trail running events on the planet – but more than this, they must be able to showcase the local culture and environment and take place in an iconic destination to appeal to runners and allow them to share the adventure with their families and friends.”
Poletti continued, “The test event earlier this month proved exceptional. After that, we have no doubt that Amazean Jungle Thailand by UTMB offers something truly unique in trail running and tourism, and importantly has the best organizational standards, great courses that showcase the local culture and environment, and is safe, fair, and sustainably organised.
“I’d like to thank the Sports Authority of Thailand and the Southern Borders Provinces Administration Center (SBPAC) for their commitment to making Betong a destination for trail running athletes from around the world. We are very proud to support their vision of using sport to drive inbound tourism to the area and to promote it on the global stage as a tourist destination.”
Amazean Jungle Thailand by UTMB will be organized by the same team behind Doi Inthanon Thailand by UTMB, an event based around the highest mountain in the country that… ‘takes runners to the rooftop of Thailand.’
In three editions, the event earned its place as the Asia-Pacific UTMB World Series Major in 2022.
Positioned to offer added appeal for international runners, UTMB World Series Majors give all participants additional qualification chances for the UTMB World Series Finals at UTMB Mont-Blanc.
The top 10 male and female runners gain automatic access to the UTMB World Series Finals, and all race finishers are granted double the number of ‘Running Stones’ compared to other World Series Events, which are used as entries in the Finals lottery.
Entries for Doi Inthanon Thailand by UTMB will officially open on the June 8th.
Amazean Jungle Trail by UTMB is the first new event to be announced for 2023, with further new events in the Middle East, Africa, Europe, and South America also anticipated.