Interview : Trail des Crêtes du Chablais in the French Alps

19 Feb 2015 18:05
Jean-Loup Fenaux
Focus on a race Interview
Credit : Jean Clerc

Hello, on the 14th of June 2015, you are organizing the Trail des Crêtes du Chablais (TCC). Could you tell us where it will be located?

The TCC is held at the heart of Chablais, a mountain range overlooking the French shores of Lake Geneva, with a start and finish in the village of Vacheresse, in Haute-Savoie.

For how many years has the race been around and why was it created in the first place?

Following a great success in 2014, we will organize the TCC for the second time in 2015. The race was imagined for trail runners by enthusiastic trail runners. The idea is to uncover the trails of the Chablais region, our training ground since childhood, by bringing this race into being. It had been a dream of ours for years!

What kind of course will the runners take? Could you describe it?

TCC is exclusively run on tracks and trails alternating between forests, pastures and screes – with only few asphalt sections, which is uncommon for a trail nowadays.

The 23km race is a rapid ascend on the ridge overlooking the Abondance valley. Then, it consists of a series of aerial single-tracks and trails offering sights on neighboring Switzerland and Geneva Lake.

The 65km race offers the same incredible panoramas over the lake. It allows for a run between sky and water on the Mémises’ ridges and around to iconic mountains of Chablais, the teeth of Oche and Mount Cornettes. From the first edition, the three bumps of 800d+ that follow the passage of Abondance became notorious for the difficulties they entail in order to complete this challenging trail.

Credit : Jean Clerc

How many runners are you expecting on Sunday morning? Which type of runner do you think you will draw?

We are approximately expecting a thousand runners this year, distributed between the two trails.
The 23km race, because of its length and absence of time limitation, is open and accessible to all, novice and more experienced.

The 65km race is more challenging with its technical trails and long ascends. Being a TCC finisher is a great sporting challenge for 2015, in sharing and conviviality. We expect to draw a large range of runners who will all leave this adventure satisfied: from the competitive runner who will be able to express his talent and skills on the demanding Chablais mountain trails, to the more amateur runner who simply challenges himself to complete the course and spend a nice day running in the Alps.

What are the distances on the agenda?

We are organizing a 23km and a 65km trail.

At this time of year, what are the expected meteorological conditions?

We expect good weather conditions, similar to last year, which were very warm! Nevertheless, there are no certainties and weather conditions may vary, that is the magic of this outdoor sport.

In any case, runners will be informed. We already planned on fallback courses and will insure everyone’s safety, regardless of the conditions.

Credit : Jean Clerc

Are there any festivities planned around the race?

Animations will be organized at the start/finish location in Vacheresse village, but we also want to create animations at Abondance, which will be crossed by the long race at km 41.

Supporters will be able to encourage runners at various points along the course and we guarantee a good atmosphere all along the course, thanks to our numerous volunteers who will go out of their way to make sure you are having a wonderful time on our trails.

Once the race is over, what would you recommend doing for a runner that never visited Chablais before? A good restaurant, a nice visit?

A dive in the lake and an evening by the water!

In one sentence, what would you say to ahotu Marathons’ readers to make them want to sign in for the Crêtes du Chablais trek?

Come, you will not be disappointed!

Interview with Baptiste Cosson. Baptiste is a coach at Annecy Semnoz ski club and a passionate trail runner. He grew up in the Chablais and knows its trails by heart. After having run a few long races in the Alps, it is quite naturally that he imagined and designed this race on his land. He then federated a small circle of friends and relatives to organize the first edition in 2014!