Courtesy of Red Bull Media Service Team
Swiss racer bidding to maintain 100% record in marathon hike and fly.
Christian ‘Chrigel’ Maurer started where he left off in the 2017 edition of Red Bull X-Alps with a share of the early lead in a weather-reduced prologue at the 2019 race start.
Maurer, who has yet to taste defeat in the marathon event travelling from Salzburg to Monaco, reached the day’s Austrian summit above Wagrain-Kleinarl in a time of 55m 31s along with French duo Benoît Outters and Maxime Pinot.
Here is all you need to know:
– The day’s action was shortened because of the high winds on the 23-kilometre hike – meaning there was no competition flying, although athletes were permitted to paraglide home at their own pace.
– In all, 32 athletes tackled the course with fans able to track all the participants with an all-new Live Tracking, which offers a first-person view and virtual reality.
– Austrian home favourite Paul Guschlbauer just missed out on a podium finish with fourth place, a little over a minute behind the leaders.
– Maurer, who missed the 2017 prologue with illness, said: “It was a hard race and good to see I could follow the strongest athletes. I’m very happy. It was also good to see so many spectators.”
– Read a full interview with Maurer HERE.
– Pinot is expected to be one of the main rivals to the Swiss competitor, and Pinot said: “We were pushing as much as possible. It will be nice to have a French win after all the Swiss guys but we’ll see. A big part of the route is in France. I’m looking forward to that.”
– Meanwhile, 2017 runner-up Outters added: “I’m very happy. It was difficult to hike with Maxime and Chrigel. I had to push a lot.”
– Race director Christoph Weber had made the decision to cut the prologue short because of strong southerly winds gusting at up to 60kmh, which received the backing of the competitors on the course.
– The winners received a second night pass as a result of their shared victory for the race proper, allowing them to hike through the night for a second time and thereby gain an advantage over their rivals.
– The race begins for real on Sunday in Salzburg.
To find out more and follow the action live, click HERE.