An Ultra trail in Luxembourg's "little Switzerland" : the Ultratrail Mëllerdall

24 Nov 2011 06:20
Jean-Loup Fenaux
Focus on a race Interview

Hello, on September 22 2012, you’ll be organizing the Ultratrail Mëllerdall . Can you tell us where it is located?

Hello, the Ultratrail Mëllerdall race will pass through the magnific “little Switzerland”, the Mullerthal, on three roads of “Mëllerdall Trail” (http://www.mullerthal-trail.lu).

We will run nature trails through meadows and forests, often right next to typical impressive rock formations. The start and finish are at the Echternach (L) hostel near the lake where the runners will have the opportunity to spend the night before and after the race and take a shower.

Credit : Entente SIT Mullerthal – Raymond Clement & Joëlle Mathias
This will be the first edition of the race. Why was it created in the first place?

The idea of the race is to bring together ultra runners in the greater region (Luxembourg, France, Germany, Belgium) and show them the beautiful landscape of Mullerthal. So far, there has been no other race of this kind in our region.

What kind of route have you set up for the runners? How would you describe it?

Over a length of about 108 km, the runners will pass the Mullerthal on a rather hard trail at over 4,600 meters altitude (D+ 2,300 m, D- 2,300 m). They will pass through forests, among rocks, through fields, panoramic view points and historical sites with many climbs and descents on small paths and stairs but only few paved roads. This race qualifies to earn UTMB points and it is, in particular, a self-sufficient race. We made provision only for five supplies where the runners will be supplied only with the minimum needed.

Credit : Entente SIT Mullerthal – Raymond Clement & Joëlle Mathias
How many runners do you expect on Saturday morning? What type of runners do you plan to attract?

For this first edition, we have set a limit of max. 200 runners that we hope to reach. Since this is a difficult trail, it would be good to have a little experience in this area of race. Otherwise, each runner will be welcome to enjoy the beautiful region of Mullerthal. In addition, the time limit will be set to 24 hours so that also good walkers can finish this race.

Do you organize other races during the Week-End? If so, on what distances?

This year, we provided no other races than the one of 108 km. But our club is now considering other races for the second edition in 2013.

Credit : Entente SIT Mullerthal – Raymond Clement & Joëlle Mathias
At that time of the year, what kind of weather can we expect?

In our region, there is no need to worry about frost or snow in late September, but the weather may vary from very good / hot and cold / stormy / rainy. So you have to think about wearing clothes that are suitable for the weather forecast.

Have you planned festivities around the marathon?

The day before the race, we have planned a Pasta Party at the Echternach hostel with a refreshment area and music to facilitate the meetings between the runners. In addition, there will be a small exhibition of a sports shop. During the race, on Saturday and Sunday, the families and friends supporting the runner can drink and eat in the finish area and can listen to music.
 
 In addition, after the race, each runner will have the opportunity to book a massage with a physiotherapist who will be present on Saturday and Sunday for a good price.

The race finished, what advice would you give a runner who has never been to Müllerthal before? A good restaurant, a fancy sightseeing?

Since the runner would probably not notice all the magnificent spots of this region because of their focus on the race, we recommend a short walk with the family or friends to Mullerthal. Then, they will have the opportunity to go to one of the many good restaurants or cafes in Echternach. To see the entire beauty of Mullerthal, we recommend to spend few days in this region.

All restaurants, coffee, trails, leisure activities in Mullerthal can be found here: www.mullerthal.lu

Credit : Entente SIT Mullerthal – Raymond Clement & Joëlle Mathias

In a single sentence, what would you tell the readers of ahotu Marathons to make them register for the Ultratrail Mëllerdall ?

If you feel strong enough to finish this race, take the opportunity to visit Luxembourg and enjoy the delightful Mullerthal with its rocks and its untouched nature.


Interview de Evelyne Küpper, representing the first ultra in Luxembourg ultratrail.lu (non-profit organization), where the president himself is a very passionate ultra runner. Having noticed that in the great region there where a lot of ultra runners, but there is no club to bring them together, the founders created the ultratrail.lu non-profit organization where each runner is welcome (www.ultratrail.lu).