Alejandro Valverde – Born to cycle

Alejandro Valverde – Born to cycle

If you are familiar with cycling, or at least if you follow events such as Le Tour de France or La Vuelta de España, it’s very likely that you have heard the name Alejandro Valverde at least a few times. Alejandro Valverde, from “The Unbeaten” to “The Bullet” Valverde took the cycling world by surprise a few years ago. However, the only ones that were not surprised by his successsare his parents. When he was 9 years old, he received his first bicycle from his father, and during his first outing he cycled 100 km (62 miles). It didn’t take long for him to receive his first nickname. When Valverde was 9 years old he won the second race he participated in. From that moment on, his colleagues started referring to him as “The unbeaten” and the parents of his competitors begged him to participate in less races, so that other kids could win sometimes. He debuted as professional cyclist on 2002 with the team Kelme-Costa Blanca after briefly cycling with the team Banesto. From that moment on, it became very frequent to see Valverde in the highest positions of the podium in most of the competitions he participates in. Naming all his achievements (which gave him the nickname of “The Bullet”) can take a long time, and although a lot of people think that he wins easily, Valverde claims that he is under a lot of pressure, both from the fans and also the press. Valverde, however, is still being humble and says that winning is not easy as it not only depends on him, but also on many...
Marco Olmo – A Trail Runnig Legend

Marco Olmo – A Trail Runnig Legend

“In my life I am a looser, I run for vengeance – Io corro per Vendetta” Marco Olmo is a living legend of extreme running. He started late, when the others started to stop. In his “previous lives”, as he says, he has been a farmer, a truck driver and a worker in his village’s cement plant. He is now 66 years old and keeps on running international races Marco is from Robilante, a little municipality of the Piemont Region in north-western Italy. Born into a peasant family, when he was twenty he left the countryside to work in the town’s cement plant . His fate and life have been marked by this choice: still nowadays, notwithstanding his sport successes, he defines himself as a “loser”. Marco Olmo is well known in Europe, and particularly in his native Italy, but stunned many outsiders when he won Europe’s top trail ultra at Mont Blanc (UTMB) twice in 2006 and 2007 aged 58 then 59, ahead of top trail runners. UTMB is one of the hardest and most important endurance races in the world, over twenty hours of uninterrupted running, 167 km (over 100 miles) around the tallest mountain in Europe. An almost unimaginable race, where mental and physical training and personal motivations are fundamental. These are just a few examples of Marco Olmo´s achievements since the 90´s 1996: Marathon des Sables (Marocco) 3rd 1997: Marathon des Sables (Marocco) 3rd 1998: Desert Marathon (Libia) 1st Marathon des Sables (Marocco) 4th 1999: Desert Marathon (Libya) 1st Marathon des Sables (Marocco) 3rd Verdon trail (France) 1st 2000: Desert Marathon (Libia) 1st Marathon des...
Who is Emelie Forsberg?

Who is Emelie Forsberg?

“Running is all about being in nature, in the mountains and forests. There’s so much freedom to be had and the best time is being in the mountains, where the clock and the world outside don’t count. Mountains are simplicity, freedom and responsibility — everything that I love!” Emelie Tina Forsberg (1986) is a Swedish athlete that has burst onto trail running scene like a breath of fresh air. She is a European and world Skyrunning champion and describes herself as a ‘lover of the mountains’. “I grew up on the east coast of Sweden,” she says. “There are just small hills there so I’m more of a forest girl really. But nature has been my playground since I was a kid.” She is mainly based in the city of Tromso (Norway) but if you are around Chamonix (France) maybe you can meet her coming back from her daily training around the Mont Blanc. Although Emelie has always loved running, she only started to take it more seriously from the age of 20. “Running doesn’t have to be hard,” she adds. “Just go out and explore and have a good time.”  Forsberg has since been crowned the 2012 Skyrunning world champion and won a string of races including Transvulcania, Ice Trail, Pikes Peak, Zegama… At the 2013 skyrunning championships in Italy she left with three individual medals — two gold and one silver. She took gold again at Matterhorn Ultraks and the future surely promises more. Running and the mountains aren’t Forsberg’s only loves. She also lists baking among her hobbies and her website is full of recipes for...
Javier Gómez Noya – a brief review of his achievements as a professional triathlete

Javier Gómez Noya – a brief review of his achievements as a professional triathlete

Javier Gómez Noya (1983) is the winner of four ITU Triathlon World Championships, holds three ITU Triathlon World Cup titles, and won the Silver medal for Spain at the 2012 Summer Olympics in men’s triathlon. He has also won world titles for Ironman 70.3 and XTERRA Triathlon. Gómez took up triathlon at the age of 15 after previously playing football and competing in swimming. However his career suffered a setback in 2000 when a routine medical test by the Consejo Superior de Deportes (CSD) revealed an “abnormal heart valve“, leading to a six-year battle between Gómez and the Spanish sporting authorities regarding his right to compete internationally. He initially won this right in November 2003, but he was not selected for the 2004 Summer Olympics and in 2005 the CSD banned him from international and domestic competition until February 2006. In the nine years from 2002 to 2010, Gómez took part in 57 ITU competitions and achieved 54 top ten positions, among which are 23 first place finishes. In 2003 and in 2008, Gómez was ITU Triathlon World Champion (both under-23 and Elite categories respectively in 2003). In 2007 and 2009 he was the Elite European Champion. He finished second in the World Championships in 2007 and was the runner up in 2011 ITU Sprint Distance Triathlon World Championships. At the 2008 Summer Olympics in men’s triathlon Gómez was among the pre-race favourites to win. With 300 meters to go in that race, Jan Frodeno was the leader of a group made up of Gómez, Athens 2004 Silver medallist Bevan Docherty of New Zealand, and Sydney 2000 Gold medallist...
Who is Karl Egloff, the Aconcagua Summit record holder?

Who is Karl Egloff, the Aconcagua Summit record holder?

On February 19, Karl Egloff  set a new record on the Western Hemisphere’s Highest peak, logging the entire 50-mile endeavor in 11 hours, 52 minutes, nearly an hour faster than the previous record which was set only two months earlier by the most famous mountain runner ever, Mr. Kilian Jornet. Who is this guy that is snagging Kilian Jornet’s speed records? Egloff, 33, is a professional mountain guide from Quito, Ecuador. His father, Charly Egloff, was a Swiss mountain guide. After meeting his Ecuadorian mother in Switzerland the pair returned to her home country to explore the Andes. Charly started taking his son with him on expeditions at a very early age. By the time he was 15 years old, the young Egloff had already ascended mountains higher than 5,000 meters and 6,000m hundreds of times. Egloff, as a teenager, was drawn to soccer. At age 17 he moved to Switzerland to finish school. Between serving in the Swiss Army and attending university he trained to become a pro soccer player. After graduating with a Business Administration degree, Egloff returned to Ecuador and opened his guiding business, Cumbre Tours. Injury and age eventually dashed Egloff’s dream of playing professional soccer. He started mountain biking as a hobby, that led to racing, and after a year of racing he was named to Ecuador’s National Team and ended up racing in World Cup events. However his late entry into cycling prevented him from attaining the technical skills necessary to excel in international competitions. Three years ago, at age 30, Egloff shifted his focus towards guiding and altitude training. Once the porters...
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