The North Face 100 Thailand 2020 attracted a record 4,200 runners from more than 20 countries.
Held in Nakhon Ratchasima province, to the east of
Bangkok, athletes competed across four distances – 15km, 25km,
50km and 100km.
The North Face 100 Thailand
is a qualifying event for the Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc (UTMB) –
the Everest of the trail running world – and welcomed elite
runners from Thailand and around the world as well as first-time
trail runners and outdoor enthusiasts to what has become a
celebration of trail running in Thailand.
The iconic 100km
distance saw a record field of 613, including a number of past
winners and top talent from China.
Yun Yanqiao (CHN), former
winner of the Hong Kong 100 Ultra Trail Race, took an early lead
and did much of the running while Sanya Khanchai (past 100km
winner)and Kristian Morgan (2019 runner up) kept him in their
sites. As the kilometres passed, Yun Yanqiao got stronger and
stretched out a lead to cross the finish line in a time of
08:44:12 and claim his first 100km crown at The North Face 100
Thailand. Sanya Khanchai (THA) won the battle for second ahead of
Kristian Morgan (GBR) in third.
In the women’s field, 2017
100km winner Phitchanan Mahachot from Thailand (pictured), was looking to regain her
crown and did just that, comfortably crossing the finish line in
first place in a time of 13:38:56. Second place went to Fiona
Russo (GBR) with Kanokkorn Vitesakan (THA) finishing in third.
Last year’s 100km male winner, Thai elite Jantaraboon “Jay”
Kiangchaipaiphana, opted to race the 50km this year and showed his
speed, leading from start to finish and taking out the title
against a quality field. Second place was won by Karan Popaichayon
(THA) with Jirawat Chobdee (THA) in third. In the women’s
division, Hannah Ngaihte (USA) took an early lead and never looked
back to claim the title. Nuntaporn Tengamnuay (THA) finished in
second with Fuhui Fang (CHN), third.
The largest field this
year was the 25km distance. Changes to the course saw an increase
in elevation but that didn’t stop the front runners with Tsz Kin
Tsui (HKG) sprinting away from the male field to claim the title,
hotly chased by Komkrit Sukkhaphan (THA) and Pathom Sritampawa
(THA) in second and third respectively. In the Women’s field,
Anna-Lena Hallkvist (SWE) beat out tough competition from French
and British runners, Claire Schoumann and Lynda Sharp
The last to start were the 15km runners which
this year saw female participants outnumber the male. Angelo
Karagiannis (GBR) finished strong to edge out Wasan Ratana-Aporn
(THA) and take the 15km win, while in the Women’s race it was
Chalita Tantisirinapadej (THA) that held onto a solid lead ahead
of a fast finishing pack.