Working hard and having a passion for running are not enough to become a world-class ultrarunner. You must possess a talent from birth. An ultramarathon is defined by the official definition as any run that is longer than the standard 42-kilometer marathon, or 195 meters. However, races are typically held over distances of 50 and 100 kilometers.
The Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc, 4 Deserts, and Western States 100 races are examples of marquee occasions. But the athletes described in this article are among the top ten runners.
1. Ryan Sands
Long distance travel is something Ryan Sands enjoys. He became the first driver to win each of the four Deserts Series 4 events ten years ago. These expeditions each involved a 250 km solo journey over the course of six or seven days through the Atacama Desert in Chile, the Gobi Desert in China, and the Sahara Desert in Egypt. In Antarctica, the last and most challenging distance, was traveled.
The South African athlete and Rino Grisel broke a record in 2018 by traversing the Great Himalayan Trail. In 25 days, 4 hours, and 24 minutes, Ryan and Reno hiked 1,504 kilometers of trail and climbed 65,000 meters. The previous world record, held by Andrew Porter, a fellow South African, stood at 28 days, 13 hours, and 56 minutes.
2. Kilian Burgada
For this extraordinary athlete, the ultramarathon is really a warm-up. Of course, he also excelled at exceptionally long-distance competitions. But it in no way mentions his greatest achievement. Fast ascents and descents from the Matterhorn, Mont Blanc, Denali, and Everest have made Kilian Burgada famous.
The Spaniard was raised in a hut at 2,000 meters above sea level and was born into a family of mountain guides. Kilian did, however, take first place in the 2006 World Climbing Championships before traveling such great distances. Burghada achieved 23,864 meters of climbs in 24 hours on February 8, 2019, breaking the previous record.
3. Pau Chapel
Pau Capell, the reigning UTMB 2019 champion, has led the Ultra Trail World Tour for the past two years. Surprisingly, Pau didn’t begin running until he needed to heal from a bad injury in 2013. But a year later, he triumphed in the Ultra Trail Mallorca and the Ultra Sierra Nevada. Since that time, Capell has won illustrious ultramarathon competitions as the Ultra Trail Australia, Eiger Ultra, Patagonia Run, Mozart 100, and three instances at TransGranCanaria. The Spanish athlete also completed the 170 km Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc in the mountains of Italy, France, and Switzerland in just 20 hours, 19 minutes, and 7 seconds in August 2019.
4. Jim Walmsley
Jim Walmsley, an American distance runner, has four times been named the finest ultramarathon runner in the world and holds the 50 km world record. He beat Bruce Fordyce’s 36-year-old record by 14 seconds when he completed the distance on May 5, 2019, as part of the Hoka One 100K Challenge. Jim also owns a number of other records, such as a 100-kilometer endurance run in the Western States.
5. Xavier Thevnar
Xavier Thevnard, a Frenchman, is the only runner in the world to have won the Grand Slam Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc by taking first place in each of the four categories: the 55 km Orcières – Champex – Chamonix, the 99 km Courmayeur – Champex – Chamonix ultramarathon, the 119 km in the Dukes of Savoy’s footsteps, and the 170 km race on the “Trek around Mont Additionally, there are roughly 9,600 meters of elevation above the course overall.
This cross-country race is regarded as one of the hardest and most challenging in all of Europe. But Xavier triumphed three times. Amazingly, Tevnar finished first overall in the 99-kilometer Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc in 2010.
6. Francois d’Haene
François d’Haene is called the king of ultra-trail – running on natural terrain for very long distances. He won the UTMB three times in 2012, 2014 and 2017, and also won the Diagonal des Fous three times. The French also holds a GR20 record in Corsica and the John Muir Trail in California.
7. Tom Evans
Prior to 2017, the former British Army captain had little recognition in the ultrarunning community. The Sahara Marathon, commonly known as the Marathon des Sables, was then won by Tom Evans. It is a six-day ultramarathon that covers roughly 250 kilometers, or the equivalent of around six classic races. On the Courmayeur – Champex – Chamonix route, Evans won the Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc a year later. Tom ran his first 100k in the Western States last year and set a record for 100 courses.
8. Damien Hall
Damian Hall, who started out as a “black horse,” swiftly broke records. The setting for the film Underdog was his performances at the Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc, where he placed fifth. 2011 saw Hall complete her first half marathon, and the following year she completed an ultramarathon. Since then, he has broken records on UK tracks at the Cape Wrath Trail, South West Coast Path, and Paddy Buckley Round. In 2018, Damian won the Ice Ultra and came in second at the Mozart 100. He won the Ultra Tour Monte Rosa, RAT, and Ultimate Trails 55K the following year.
9. Rui Ueda
One of the best skyrunners in the world is Rui Ueda. The competition is held in mountains at an altitude of at least 2,000 meters with an average minimum slope of 6 percent and required crossings with a slope of 30 percent, which is particular to the running discipline in which the Japanese excel. Ueda placed fifth in his first Tokyo Shibamata 100km ultramarathon. And in 2016, Ruy won the 100,000 Gorge Falls race in the US and placed second in the Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc on the Courmayeur – Champex – Chamonix circuit, both of which helped him earn attention internationally. In 2019, Rui Ueda had his biggest achievement when he won the Red Bull 400 and the Skyrunner World Series in Sapporo.
10. Dylan Bowman
Dylan Bowman discovered his talent for running towards the end of his college lacrosse career and quickly became the best ultramarathon runner in the world. It took him a year to prepare for his first major Leadville Trail 100 race in 2010. And Dylan surprised everyone with a third place. A year later, Bowman San Diego 100, Australia 100, Istria 100, Mount Fuji Ultra and two Tarawera Ultras.