Top 10 French Races

L’ultramarathon du Salève

Month May
Location Salève, in the French Alps, just south of Geneva
Distance 93K over three days
Why do it This is a tough, multi-stage mountain ultramarathon, but the scenery alone makes covering that kind of distance well worth it. The race offers three days of gazing over the grandeur of Mont Blanc, the lake at Annecy and the splendour of the high Alps, and is run up mountain trails and forest rides, and across high, open mountain pastures. If that all sounds too much for you, you can opt to participate in just a single day’s stage instead, which is hardly a soft option. You get a special atmosphere in this kind of multi-stage event, with plenty of bonding going on during the slog itself, but most of all over a beer and around the table during the evening meals, all of which are laid on in specially arranged accommodation (see below). This may not be a big race in terms of numbers, but it offers real individual treatment, including shuttles to and from the airport or station. And the best part is that, as the race takes place at the start of the summer holidays, you can stay on for plenty of rest and recuperation in this wonderful part of the world.
Field Up to 100
Fee around €110
Contact G Reix, Les terrasses de Genève, 52 allée des Launages, 74160 Collonges- sous-Salève, France; tel 00 33 450 43 67 33; web
Other information Each stage starts at 10am, the route is marked, and has feeding stations every 5km. Showers and massages provided. A swimming pool is also available in the campsite.
Getting there By road – 10km south of Geneva. By rail – the nearest station St Julien-en-Genevois from Geneva. By air – fly to Geneva. The organisers will pick you up at the airport or the station if necessary.
Where to stay Accommodation, in a three-star campsite, is ‘à la carte’. It ranges from the bare minimum of just meals after each race stage, which is included in the registration fee, to full accommodation for the three nights in a chalet, holiday bungalow or caravan with meals. These can be booked when registering. If you prefer, camping and caravan sites or chalets can also be arranged for your whole stay.

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