Nepal with another top-notch female ultra runner, finishing first=Woman’s and 3rd Overall in Asia’s biggest 2021 trail running
event, Thailand by UTMB
This past weekend over 2,000 runners took to the trails around Thailand’s highest peak for the.second edition of Thailand by UTMB, Asia’s biggest trail running event for 2021. The event also served as part of the reponening strategy of Thailand to international tourism.
Thailand by UTMB hosted both 168 km and 110 km races as the two major ultra race competitions, attracting world-class elites from various countries. The performance of the winners exceeded expectations with several world-class performances but Sunmay Budha from epal stole the show.
It was Sunmaya’s first race in more than a year and also the first with her new team, The North Face Adventure Team, a professional trail running and adventure racing team managed by Asia Pacific Adventure based in Hong Kong. It was Sunmaya’s first solo race at the 100km or longer distance with added competition from Nepalese Mira Rai, who also flew in for the event.
Sunmaya, however, seemed unfazed by it all and ran the perfect race not only beating second place Mira Rai by over 2 hours, but nearly catching the 2nd place male, Cedric GOLEA from France. Cedric, who was 28th overall at UTMB, the de facto World Championships of Ultra Trail running, was caught the last 1 km from the finish and able to hold off Sunmaya by just 4
Sunmaya revealed after the race, “I’m so happy today. I gave my best and had such good assistance from my support team and teammates both before and during the race. I really want to thank my new sponsors The North Face and Coros and the many people who have helped me since I started trail running in Nepal.”
Ryan S. Blair, Director of The North Face Adventure Team commented, “We have enjoyed working with Sunmaya closely these past 8 months on our team and are super proud of her.Today was a masterclass performance and she showed her intelligence also by quickly learning all the nutrition, hydration and pacing strategies required for success at this longer distance.”
Final 110k Women’s results:
1. Sunmaya BUDHA (Nepal) 14:54:01
2. Mira RAI (Nepal) 17:12:48
3. Phichamon RAKSAKUL (Thailand) 23:54:48