Rai, Sherpa win Everest Trail Race

KATHMANDU: Suman Kulung Rai and Chhechee Sherpa won the seventh Everest Trail Race which concluded in Lukla yesterday.

In the men’s category, Rai completed six stages from Jiri to Bhandar (22km), Jase Bhanjyang (24km), Kharikhola (37km), Phakding (28km), Tyangboche (20km) and Lukla (30km) in 18 hours, 35 minutes and 54 seconds to win the race, Kami Sherpa, managing director at Annapurna Treks Expedition Pvt Ltd informed.

Luis Alberto from Spain bagged second position with the timing of 19 hours, 12 minutes and 49 seconds, while Norwegian Sondre Asmdahal came third in 20 hours, 47 minutes and 31 seconds.

In the women’s category, Chhechee clocked 27 hours, 29 minutes and 50 seconds to finish first, while Portuguese Ester Alves (27:55:59 hours) and Elisabet Barnes of Sweden completed the trail in 29 hours, 32 minutes and 10 seconds to become second and third in the women’s category respectively.

A total of 41 athletes from 13 countries, including 9 women, took part in the race which started from Jiri of Dolakha district on November 9. The top three finishers in both the categories have been given a cash prize worth Rs 150,000, Rs 100,000 and Rs 50,000 respectively, according to organisers.

Annapurna Treks Expedition Pvt Ltd and The Elements Pure Coconut Water had organised the competition, Sherpa added.

According to him, the race is being organised since 2011 with an aim of preserving the route used by legendary mountaineers Tenzing Norgay Sherpa and Edmund Hillary while climbing the Mt Everest five decades ago.

The race was conducted at the altitude of 1,600m and went through Ramechhap district’s Bamti Bhandar, Solukhumbu district’s Pikey, Namche, Tengboche before culminating in Lukla at an altitude of 4,070 metres on November 15.